Live Listening

The summer season is upon us, and it comes with lots of opportunities for an exciting moment: the orchestra has tuned, the conductor has taken the podium, and you can hear a pin drop as audience members eagerly await that first note.  The baton comes down, and the ensemble breathes life into an empty, silent space.

     Live concerts are an important part of musical learning.  Here, a student has the chance to hear his or her chosen instrument played well.  Here, we discover what a good tone sounds like, what good technique can enable us to do, how an ensemble works together, and how improvisation is made successful.  It is here that we are inspired by those who have gone before us, that we wonder if we ourselves could do something so well.  Live performances are the product of long hours of work and thought: a fine example for any student.

    Going to live concerts doesn’t have to be expensive.  There are student rates offered for tickets, and especially in the summertime, it’s easy to find concerts that are free for the entire family.  The casual atmosphere of summer concerts is often more attractive to families with children and to those who may be less familiar with formal concerts, and they can lead to year-round interest in watching music made right in front of your eyes.  

    So, next time you’re looking for something fun and educational to do with the family, go to the symphony, to a family-friendly jazz club, or to a local concert in the park.  You’ll have an enjoyable outing that will offer learning experiences, conversation topics with your kids, and the sheer beauty of music.