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I am posting this as a benchmark, not because I think I'm playing very well yet.  The idea would be post a video every month for a ye...

Saturday, March 14, 2020

A realization

I realized something today. I don't need to make the argument that studying music is a good way of studying "the poetry itself." Instead, I can make a much simpler and stronger argument: that "sung poetry" is itself a great thing, worthy of being studied in and of itself.  That moves the argument to higher ground, much easier to defend against sniping criticism. There are just all these great lieder that exist and happen to incorporate great poems. Hearing these poems sung is as great an experience (or better) than reading them on the page. Who cares if hearing the song makes you interpret the poem in a better way in conventional literary terms?  My argument doesn't take away anything from people who don't want to listen to lieder.  Just don't listen to it; it's your loss. 

I got goose-bumps on my arms and began to weep as this realization struck me.  I am a bit lonely holed up in an apartment in Granada where I know only two people. Needless to say my partner will not be joining me here.  I am not feeling unhappy, but the existence of all these songs made me weep at the thought of how much beauty was there, and largely unappreciated. 

Lieder is this little corner of the musical world that went unappreciated by me until I began this project.  I just knew a tiny fraction of it (I still do, in fact). The immediate occasion was listening to a singer who had done some George Crumb material, and then hearing her sing Aaron Copland's Emily Dickinson cycle. I didn't even like Copland until today!

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