Monday, August 23, 2010

"Let us go along together"


When I listen to Mozart, he seems to envelop me in his great love. Mozart’s love for mankind is not merely a pious kind of love that points to hope in the next world through religious ecstasy: “All right. Life is sad. But if there is love, see how beautiful life can be. The sad life that we all must live—let us go along together and comfort one another.”


This is what Mozart says to us, and I affirm it with all my heart.

Shinichi Suzuki, Nurtured by Love, p. 82

This quote wasn't new to me, but I came across it again last week while doing a session for parents of prospective violin students, and it really struck me.  It makes me think of another response to Mozart that I read more than twenty years ago but have never forgotten—I don’t think I’ve encountered a better description of his music, ever:


There was one special fellow’s music that made her heart shrink up every time she heard it. Sometimes this fellow’s music was like little colored pieces of crystal candy, and other times it was the softest, saddest thing she had ever imagined about.
Then, two pages later:
She was trying to think of the name of this fellow who had written this music she heard over the radio last winter. She had asked a girl at school who owned a piano and took music lessons about him, and the girl asked her teacher. It seemed this fellow was just a kid who had lived in some country in Europe a good while ago. But even if he was just a young kid he had made up all these beautiful pieces for the piano and for the violin and for a band or orchestra too. In her mind she could remember about six different tunes from the pieces of his she had heard. A few of them were kind of quick and tinkling, and another was like that smell in the springtime after a rain. But they all made her somehow sad and excited at the same time.


She hummed one of the tunes, and after a while in the hot, empty house by herself she felt the tears come in her eyes. Her throat got tight and rough and she couldn’t sing any more. Quickly she wrote the fellow’s name at the very top of the list—MOTSART.
(from The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, by Carson McCullers, p. 29 & 31)

Just wanted to share.

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