It is a common misconception that the terms “musical” and “opera” are interchangeable. It’s an easy mistake to make since both art forms include elaborate dance numbers, flashy costumes, and a live orchestra, however there are also some major differences to consider.
Merriam-Webster defines indigenous as “living, or occurring naturally in a particular region or environment.” According to the United Nations, “there are an estimated 370 million indigenous people in the world.” In 2007, the United Nations declared that August 9th is the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples. In honor of the tenth celebration of this event, here is a small tribute to the music of Native Americans.
Independence Day in the United States celebrates the anniversary of the date over two hundred years ago when the Founding Fathers signed the Declaration of Independence (July 4, 1776). It is annually celebrated with fireworks, concerts, parades, and the singing of the national anthem, the “Star-Spangled Banner.”
John Rice from Eighteenth-Century Music makes an interesting point about the introduction of coffee to Europe in the late 1600’s and the “astonishing level of productivity achieved” by many composers in the seventeenth century. Several famous composers including Bach, Beethoven, and Mozart were known for indulging in the caffeine craze.
Pyotr Tchaikovsky (1840-1893) was one of the most prolific Russian composers of the Romantic Era. Despite the success, Tchaikovsky found himself regularly overcome with frustration and loneliness. He regularly took it as a personal affront when the general public celebrated one of his simpler works over a composition that he personally treasured.
Elizabeth Green is regarded as one of the most influential educators, conductors, and authors of the twentieth century. In her lifetime, she wrote eleven books, published six original compositions for strings, and earned several prestigious awards including the Golden Rose Award from the Women Band Directors National Association and the Medal of Honor from the Mid-West International Band and Orchestra Clinic.
Socrates is quoted as saying it is better to knowingly do the wrong thing (rather than unknowingly) since a person who is aware of themselves is capable of changing. The same logic can be applied to injury-prevention in most professions using a method designed by F.M. Alexander in the early 1900’s. The Alexander Technique is a combination of psychological and physical therapy that incorporates heightened self-awareness into the subject’s regular activity in order to prevent injury.