Music - medicine for the heart, mind and soul

Thank you to my friend and colleague Sharon Omura for sharing this with me. This is the Welcome Address that Karl Paulnack, Director of Music Division at the Boston Conservatory delivered to students and their parents in 2004. It's a moving speech on why art matters and more specifically, why music matters. There are many quotes I like in his speech. This is just one of them:

"If we were a medical school, and you were here as a med student practicing appendectomies, you'd take your work very seriously because you would imagine that some night at two AM someone is going to waltz into your emergency room and you're going to have to save their life. Well, my friends, someday at 8 PM someone is going to walk into your concert hall and bring you a mind that is confused, a heart that is overwhelmed, a soul that is weary. Whether they go out whole again will depend partly on how well you do your craft. "

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He shared a touching story about the most important concert of his life, which took place in a nursing home in a small Midwestern town a few years ago. A war veteran came to him after hearing Aaron Copland's Sonata and said, "How does the music do that? How did it find those feelings and those memories in me?" The piece brought back one particular memory regarding a fellow pilot. Only afterwards did the war vet learn that the piece was dedicated to a fallen pilot who fought in WWII.

Click here to go to Karl Paulnak's speech.

Here's the videos of the piece that moved the war veteran:

The second movement especially makes the heart weep.

If you'd like to add Copland's Sonata for Violin and Piano to your music collection, click on the image below:

Now if you'd like to learn this piece, check it out here:

Sonata look inside Sonata (for Violin and Piano). By Aaron Copland (1900-1990). For Piano, Violin (Violin). Boosey & Hawkes Chamber Music. 36 pages. Boosey & Hawkes #M051350834. Published by Boosey & Hawkes (HL.48002997)...more info

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