My first blog post was about the benefits of classical music. I found a few organizations such as Project 440. They are one of the many organizations that empower students to turn their passion for playing music into a passion for giving back to their community. My second blog post discusses LiveConnections and their three different types of programs- Bridge Sessions, ClassicAlive and LiveStudio. They “... inspire learning and build communities through collaborative music-making.” Another organization is Astral Artists, who want “To discover the most promising classical musicians residing in the United States, assist their early professional career development, and present their world-class artistry to the community through concerts and engagement programs.”
I emailed Project 440, LiveConnections and a few of my instrumental teachers, looking for a presentation that could be shown to my class. After lots of correspondence, both organizations had to decline. It turned out the Mr. Conyers, of Project 440, was on a European Tour with The Philadelphia Orchestra (their calendar can be seen here). For LiveConnections, there just was not enough time for them to put something together.
So I did a presentation to my advisory! You can see the slideshow here. A video clip of my presentation can be seen here. Unfortunately, my phone did not have enough storage so only half of it can be seen in the video.
I had them listen to two pieces, one pop music and the other classical. The first was “Roar” by Katy Perry and the second, the Allegro of “Eine Kleine Nachtmusik” (A Little Night Music) composed by Mozart. These are two pretty different pieces! As they listened, I asked them to draw and/or write their reactions/thoughts/feelings. After listening to each song, a few shared their experiences and art. I was pleasantly surprised that a few of my classmates started snapping while listening to Mozart because I was all prepared for groaning and complaining.
The main purpose of this presentation was to open my advisory’s minds to new musical experiences. I told them, “If you enjoyed the classical music I played today, maybe try some more!” A few of my classmates said they felt relaxed listening to the classical piece. My advice to them was to listen to classical when you’re tense. And to those who felt that pop energized them- listen to pop music when you are tired.
According to Healthline, “Scientists at the University of Missouri have found that people can boost their mood simply by listening to upbeat music.” “Music therapy has been used for centuries as a way to restore energy, improve mood, and even help the body heal more naturally.” and is ‘the clinical and evidence-based use of music interventions to accomplish individualized goals.’ ” according to the American Music Therapy Association.
Here is a picture of my classmate’s drawing:
They said, “The classical music made me happy so that's why I drew so many happy faces. And for Roar it made me feel more agitated and aggressive. That's why there's ‘Grrr...’.”
And another classmate said, “I don't really like pop music, so when I first heard it I knew that I was not for a happy ride. I drew more jagged because the beat was all the over the place. However when listening to the classical piece I felt more in peace. I drew smoother waves and wrote the words relaxed and serene. Overall, I would say the classical piece is much better for focusing and using as background music. Compared to the edginess of the pop, you get hung on the words.”
Here’s their art:
Overall, I am proud of my Agent Of Change. I worked hard to connect with outside resources and even though in the end it didn’t work out, I stayed strong and created something on my own. I really enjoyed this emotional artwork, as I will call it. To take this to the next level, I wish I had more time to ask other people, not just my classmates or my advisory. I could’ve asked teachers or even musicians. I would’ve wanted to see others’ reactions to pop vs. classical and see their creativity shine.