Monday, January 5, 2015

Intimacy Always Frightening, Even with Music

I should not be surprised that most people are frightened of the intimacy of listening.  Perhaps that is why it seems to be easier for people simply to take in what they are hearing in a cabaret environment: the room is dark, people have a drink in hand, there is no distraction, and the sound is close up.

But it puzzles me that people seem to be so frightened of their intimate connection to their own playing.  Why is that so threatening?  From what some individuals have reported to me I gather that some of it has to do with the terror of growing up.  If you acknowledge that your own playing is worth paying attention to you are acknowledging something basically respectable about yourself, something adult, something authoritative.

Too often music study is dedicated to the proposition that thou shalt never feel mastery.  Only the master is authoritative.  Your experience will never measure up.

How is that measurement taken?  In fame, perhaps; in commercial success?