Sunday, August 7, 2011

Can't get that teen out of my head

I like to play music when I am working in the kitchen.  True, I habitually go to my iPod and play recordings from it but that is because the music I can stumble on is not as pleasing to me as our recordings.  The other day, I played again The Early Symphonies Vol. 2 of Mozart.  I was surprised at how my spirit soared while that music was playing.  I was surprised at how elated my mood continued to be.  An Austrian teen-ager, from age 13 to 15, composed the music that I was listening to and he did it more than 200 years ago.

Granted, he was not a typical teenager.  He is sometimes referred to as the greatest composer in history!  But still, it is surprising to me that in 1770, a young kid was making marks on paper that made the sounds I just heard.  But think of men and women being born somewhere around 1920 to 1940, getting old enough to study music, work hard at doing so, advancing in their skills, surpassing the competition, being hired as part of the orchestra of the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, gathering with their instruments in early 1972 to make a recording.  All those musicians made the recording of the teen's music more than 20 years ago, that I have listened to many times.  

That young hand, those young ears, that young brain put together sounds that haunt me today.  I find that listening is only one pleasure.  Working, biking, waiting for a phone connection, the basic form of symphony 47 in D major (K. 97) floats into my head.  I look like I am gazing at the rain or waiting for a green light but my head is being filled by a teen-aged boy I never met.

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