Philadelphia classical music events, discussion, and directory
For ten years during my childhood and adolescence I played the violin in my school orchestra. I was led to the instrument by my parents and stayed with it not because I was necessarily very good, but more so out of a sense of obligation to remain committed to the practice -- although, to be fair, I did very little practicing. Yet, I religiously attended every rehearsal and practice session, participated in concerts and competitions, and regardless of my inner desire to be a percussionist rather than a fixture in the string section, I also formed a sense of camaraderie with fellow members of the orchestra.
During the past couple of weeks I have been inspired, in large part by my attendance at two concerts featuring young musicians, to reflect not only on my own orchestral memories and maneuverings but also to consider the possibilities for educational growth, imagination, and collaboration that are seeded in generative spaces like youth orchestras. Despite having given up my violin practice, my work as a researcher and educator who is interested in the creative practices of youth continues to afford me opportunities to learn with and from young people. Especially affecting for me has been learning about the mission of youth orchestras that follow the ethos of El Sistema, the youth orchestra founded in Venezuela that is committed to bringing music of the ages into the lives of youth wherein music is viewed as an agent of social change and development.
Moved by these performances and performers, I have written down a few thoughts in the form of blog posts for my blog on adolescent literacies:
Being present as youth musicians come "into presence" - I saw the orange of his plaid shirt and the shine on his trombone before I saw the young man who wore both as extensions of his being, as he made his way to his awaiting family through the narrow passageway between the auditorium seating and the doors leading to the outdoor courtyard. ...more...
Moved to the point of trust: On Simon Rattle, Musical Magic, and Pl... - Simon Rattle astounds me. Pure serendipity first put me in his presence nearly fifteen years ago, brought me to a seat in the fourth row of the Academy of Music in Philadelphia where Rattle was conducting Mahler's Symphony No. 2. ...more...
Simon Rattle and Play On, Philly: