You’re not here to become an entertainer, and you don’t have to sell yourself. The truth is you don’t have anything to sell; being a musician isn’t about dispensing a product, like selling used Chevies. I’m not an entertainer; I’m a lot closer to a paramedic, a firefighter, a rescue worker. You’re here to become a sort of therapist for the human soul, a spiritual version of a chiropractor, physical therapist, someone who works with our insides to see if they get things to line up, to see if we can come into harmony with ourselves and be healthy and happy and well.
Frankly, ladies and gentlemen, I expect you not only to master music; I expect you to save the planet. If there is a future wave of wellness on this planet, of harmony, of peace, of an end to war, of mutual understanding, of equality, of fairness, I don’t expect it will come from a government, a military force or a corporation. I no longer even expect it to come from the religions of the world, which together seem to have brought us as much war as they have peace. If there is a future of peace for humankind, if there is to be an understanding of how these invisible, internal things should fit together, I expect it will come from the artists, because that’s what we do.
These are the final two paragraphs of a speech given by Karl Paulnack, pianist and director of the music division at Boston Conservatory, to welcome this year’s freshman class. Oh, I do like when a guy thinks big. I think he’s right, too. Music does align our insides – I think we have all experienced that. I have been keeping one CD in my car for the last six months, Yo-Yo Ma and the Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra. Most of the music on the CD is by J.S.Bach and does it ever align my insides in traffic!
What will it take to firmly establish music in every school? I think the subject Music is as important for a kid as English or Mathematics, but many parents do not agree.