Instrumental Music Overview
The Australian aborigines believe that music is in the universe seeking to be heard. How might the intelligent and sensitive performer, composer and listener prepare to hear it? The study of music allows for exploration of the shared human perceptions and emotions which temper our lives; those common or singular experiences which by other means are imperfectly expressed, or cannot be expressed at all.
The art of music demands that the educated musician and music lover be able to recognize and articulate musical elements realized in diverse examples of music making. A vibrant musical education fosters curiosity in, and sensitivity to, the musical worlds which surround us. The alert mind trained in the disciplined study of music will appreciate the ways in which music integrates and manifests knowledge on multiple levels. With careful listening, the musician may become humbled by the power of music to change lives.
What does the study of music entail? We learn to hear pitch in sound and pattern in rhythm. We learn to hear the unfolding of sonic structures as parts repeat and transform themselves. We learn to listen and look for distinctions and beauty. We learn to be surprised, moved and inspired by the similarities and differences in music. We learn to hear the correlation between phrasing in music and phrasing in the living of our lives. We learn to accept the power of music over us. We learn to allow music to point to beauty beyond ourselves, in the presence of which we may feel exalted or consoled, uplifted or fortified.