Wooden boxes

I was privileged, again, to attend a concert given by the Minnesota Orchestra tonight. The concert was entitled, “Osmo Vanska Conducts Future Classics,” and was the final event of the week-long, tenth annual Minnesota Orchestra Composer Institute.
I am thrilled and again amazed by the tremendous talent shared by the orchestra members, the conductor, and the new composers. One composer was only 20 years old. Some favorite pieces were “Winter Bells” by Polina Nazaykinskaya, “The Body Electric,” by Clint Needham, and “Mutatis Mutandis,” by David Weaver. And “Namaskar,” by Narong Prangcharoen. And all the others.
As a dear friend of mine reminded readers in her blog, music is truly a component of our brain. Why else would someone, somewhere, so long ago, decide that he or she simply must build a box that would resonate in such a way as to create what we know as music? What would possess such a person to do something like that? Why is it that we are so strongly compelled to create music?
I don’t know, exactly. I’m sure I could find in my reading a solid physiological explanation for these questions (anything by Daniel Levitin, Oliver Sacks, or E. Thayer Gaston comes to mind). But I do know that I respond very viscerally to the sound of that orchestra, and to those people playing those boxes of wood with their surprising, athletic dexterity.
Thanks for reading.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *