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Shirley Tilghman, former President of Princeton University, on the arts ...
Making Music at Princeton: "Shakespeare tells us that 'the man that hath no music in himself ... is fit for treasons, stratagems, and spoils.' Whatever the merits of this claim, we do not have to worry that it applies to our students. From September until May, Princeton is awash in music, from formal recitals in Taplin Auditorium to freewheeling jam sessions in Cafe Vivian; from the works of classical composers to the music of laptop computers; from grand productions involving multiple art forms to a cappella beneath a moonlit arch... Today, together with the Lewis Center for the Arts, the Department of Music and its musical performance program are creating new opportunities for students to express themselves in virtually every conceivable musical form, while forging multidisciplinary connections that will enrich the musical experience of these talented young musicians and all who hear them." (The President's Page / Princeton Alumni Weekly, 109/13/ 2009).

Commencement 2009: In Pursuit of Purpose and Meaning: "Nowhere is this search more palpable than in the creative and performing arts. That is not to say, of course, that these disciplines do not engage us with the world. No one could have seen the great modern dancer Judith Jamison in Alvin Ailey's ballet Cry without coming away with a deeper understanding of the plight of African American women...just as Johann Sebastian Bach's Mass in B Minor, so ably performed by the Glee Club this spring, can be heard as a profoundly uplifting religious experience. As the poet Wallace Stevens said, 'Art helps us to live our lives.' Art reveals meaning -- through the process of creation and the process of observations." (The President's Page / Princeton Alumni Weekly, 109/16/ 2009).

Joseph Polisi, President of Juilliard, has made the following observations about what we do as artists (specifically in music) in today’s society...
The sheer joy of musical space (Princeton, NJ)
"We live in a society today which evidences little effort to make a distinction between art and entertainment, achievement and fame, liberal and vocational education, quality and quantity. The arts help us to better understand ourselves and to more clearly focus the experiences and ideas that give value to human life. It should be understood that all entertainment is not art and not all art can be expected to function as entertainment. As individuals who bring the art of music to our society, we must clearly understand the primary place which art has in preserving our culture and quality of life."

Samual Hope, Executive Director of the National Association of Schools of Music, added these words (to the NASM's members): "I know you join me in taking great courage from the fact that what we do has lasting value. A word I overuse is 'transcendent,' but it is the only word I know to carry the meaning, purpose, and result of the activities we engage on behalf of music and people and both together. I believe we understand that the power in this room represents far more than what could be described as an 'advocacy army.' The power here is the common dedication to power in music rather than power from it or over it. The power here is the power of ideas, the combined power of common trust and the synergy that it generates. The power here is the power of art."

C. Tayloe Harding, Jr., President of the College Music Society, speaks on every musician’s responsibility...
Composer, Ira Mowitz (Princeton, NJ)
"Why must education in music for all individuals be the responsibility of every musician? The reason is that maximizing education in music for all individuals is the best way to insure the establishment of a culture of living in and through music to improve the lives of all Americans. When we live through music -- that is, when we play an instrument, sing, or listen carefully -- many aspects of our lives are improved. Studies reveal how helpful the action of participating in music is to many of our daily mental and physical functions. The more we participate actively in music, the greater the benefit to us.

Living in music involves a deeper, more profound connection. It concerns a conscious awareness of that place within us where music's effect is personal and emotional. When we live in music we experience music's deep meanings, and this experience inspires new outlooks on life.

Thus, when we live through music and live in music -- as opposed to being passive listeners and simply having music around us -- we make ourselves and, by extension, our society, a richer, more thoughtful, and more sensitive place. (CMS Newsletter 2005)



   
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