How to Actually Enjoy Classical Music (For Book Lovers)

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Classical music can be pretty boring.  Why would you choose to listen to something that long and that abstract? Lots of people try to figure out how to “understand” the music, but understanding is definitely not always the same as enjoying.

Of all people, I was perfectly primed to love classical music. I grew up with a professional classical musician as a father, was taken to numerous concerts, took piano lessons constantly ever since I was seven years old, and participated in chorus and band in high school. I even became a classical music major in college and had extensive formal training. And while I didn’t hate it or anything, I certainly didn’t love it.  Like so many people, I just didn’t “get” it.

So forget understanding.

How can you actually ENJOY classical music?

Believe it or not, it is possible.  As a book lover, I found the secret…

Books take you on adventures that spice Continue reading

What If Werewolves Were In Jane Eyre?

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(SPOILERS for Jane Eyre)

What if instead of being mentally insane, Rochester’s secret wife was actually a werewolf?

Just imagine: Jane hears strange noises in the night that sound like a mix between human and beast (so far, so consistent with the actual novel).  But then it turns out the creature, Rochester’s wife, is a werewolf.  Would the story really change from the standpoint of plot??

It might change how we perceive Rochester’s character.  Hiding Continue reading

Classical Music Stories: Alice in Wonderland

Down the Rabbit Hole

You’re falling! Down, down, down you go. You keep expecting to collide with the ground and keep bracing yourself but you keep falling just the same.

You’re still falling.

You’re still falling.

You start to fall asleep (high notes). After all, you can only grit your teeth in expectation for so long.

Once you’re asleep, you have a nightmare (very low notes). What if you never ever stop falling but are stuck in a loop forever??

When you wake up you find yourself on the floor. Apparently landing woke you up, but you’re not hurt at all—phew.

(But of course you still have no idea what’s going on…)

 

Where do you think the music would go next if it continued?

Classical Music Stories: Wuthering Heights

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Divertimento for Strings No. 4 by Antonio Salieri

Quartetto Amati

Young Catherine Linton is wandering out on the moors, basking in the beauty of nature and birdsong. The music becomes mixed with some darkness as she catches sight of Heathcliff, though…but she doesn’t know the danger she’s in and keeps rejoicing and just being her bubbly self. Besides, Heathcliff is acting the perfect gentleman! Nelly, who is with her, tries to interject a few timid worries and warnings, but she is basically unaffected. After all, what’s the worst that could happen??

 

GPS Literary Characters

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What if your favorite literary characters could be the voice on your GPS?

George Wickham (Pride and Prejudice) would give directions that seemed to make perfect sense but would end up taking you to the wrong place.

Peter Pan would give you false directions and then change them at the last minute while laughing hysterically.

Jane Eyre would be the best because her directions would be to the point and practical.

Bilbo Baggins (The Hobbit) would be a close second. Although, come to think of it, he Continue reading

Judging the Book By Its Cover: Suffocating Expectations

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My Idea: Well, with a name like Presto, what was Frankie supposed to do? Ever since he can remember, people have told him he should be a musician.

When he banged on pots and pans as a toddler, the neighbor lady would yell through the window to his mother: “Hey, would ya look at that! I told ya Frankie would be a natural!”

In first grade when it was his turn to tell the class what he wanted to be when he grew up, the teacher interrupted him with, “Oh, Frankie, well obviously you’re going to be one of those music people!”

Now as a 5th grader, the day is rapidly approaching when all of the students will get the chance to learn a few notes on a string instrument of their choice to Continue reading