wouldn’t it be great if we all learned to really listen to each other, equally in all languages, and wouldn’t it be logical if that were brought about by having a really good and solid music education program built into the general education of all young people!? it seems like there are so many studies, so many obvious and clear statements, about how positive a musical education is in the development of a person’s emotional, psychological, intellectual and physical abilities — to pound the heck out of a not quite dead horse, here goes:
music trains micromuscular coordination. piano playing has obvious advantages when you are learning to type, meaning in the future you are faster and cleaner typing on a computer, for example, obviously and clearly useful today in every job imaginable.
chamber music training, classical or jazz, teaches an intricate and complex sense of teamwork - learning to play and listen at the same time, interact in creating a complete sound, work together to achieve the best possible collective result. This can translate directly to talking and listening at the same time. Working on expression and form together musically makes everyone realize that they are part of a whole, and the whole is greater than the sum of the parts. I can’t imagine a job where such skills are not extremely desirable.
The democratic process, if understood in the sense that communication and compromise are necessary parts of teamwork, is supported a priori in working together in a musical group. Even in orchestra, where it’s more like a democratic dictatorship (the conductor being the leader) still supports teamwork in playing in tune together, following the conductor while also giving 100% to make the sound of the orchestra or big band really fantastic.
Working with music early in life (the mozart effect, for example) stimulates creativity in a fantastic way, allowing for a much more creative attitude in problem solving later on. There is always a creative solution to every problem, I think, and it’s much nicer than the destructive one, although it takes one extra step of imaginative thinking. Training in music early on installs this creative, imaginative step from the outset, eliminating the need to learn this type of thinking later.
So why is it that music (I should include all the arts…) is the first thing that is cut from school programs when money gets short? It’s really backwards thinking, because even if music is the only thing that is taught early on in schools it still makes learning everything else much easier later. It’s the easiest and best guarantee for the future I can imagine. And would color the way people think in the next generation in such a way that we could solve many problems in a much more gentle and open, communicative way.
How many wars could have been avoided, oil spills, mistreatment of fellow humans, animals, nature, etc., it’s staggering to imagine.
Now is the time to think about it!