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What you hear is what you hear

I often find myself in conversations about classical music with people who know relatively little about it. I love when this happens. I appreciate the opportunity to communicate about what I do to someone outside the classical music bubble, and to hear their perspective.

There is pattern I notice in a lot of these conversations. Usually, the other person is pretty quick to mention that they don’t know much about classical music. If they do have a personal experience to relate, sometimes it takes reassurance from me in order to make them feel comfortable talking about it.

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Improvising like Mozart

Musicians often express supreme reverence toward Mozart, and with good reason. But to think of Mozart simply as the embodiment of musical perfection is not always helpful to performers of his music. There are times when we need to be flexible and creative, and maybe just a bit less reverent.

imageedit_1_6013441801If the goal of a performer is to bring music to life in a way similar to what the composer envisioned, then playing a Mozart concerto exactly as written is not, in fact, a great way to achieve that goal. I’ll explain why.

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