Thursday, July 06, 2006

In seeing the new Superman movie, I have developed a little bit of a crush. It's not on Superman himself, although he is certainly worthy of a crush, but it's on a rather unlikely person. John Williams, to be exact. One of the most thrilling parts of the whole movie - the part where I decided I already loved it - was when the "Superman" theme began to play with the opening credits. The music is so amazing! And Mr. Talented Composer didn't just do this, no no no, he has done so many more: ET! Star Wars! Schindler's List! Raider's of the Lost Ark! Harry Potter! The list could go on and on.

I've noticed a trend lately (with myself) that inclines more and more to instrumental and/or classical music. It's really the background music to my childhood - if you dropped into my parents' house right this moment, they would have on the classical music station or a similar CD (assuming they're home, of course). And then there were 14 years of ballet lessons, all performed to classical music. This also has an interesting side-effect, in that I can hear Chopin or Grieg, and immediately my muscles want to launch into a barre routine. Frappes! Degages! Musical memory is a strange thing indeed.

Don't get me wrong: I still love my rock'n'roll and all the others, but there's something so soothing about music that is purely instrumental. You don't have pay attention to or be distracted by the words, because there aren't any.* It leads me to one of my favorite quotes, which I collect for moments such as this: "It is only that which cannot be expressed otherwise that is worth expressing in music." (Frederick Delius). Beautiful.

*I sort of lop opera music into this category as well, because there are words, but I can't understand them.

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