I had five immensely talented musicians gather in my living room last night. We played through a program of Vivaldi, Handel, Glass and Grieg over dumplings, brownies and wine.
When I was in college (uni) I was in somewhere around six ensembles at any one given time. The sheer volume of music that I consumed during those years is staggering. From Bartok quartets to black gospel, opera, symphonies, chamber and solo works I was treated to an enviable canon of works. Six hours of daily playing was a pretty usual occurrence.
I still hold that I’ve never worked harder in my life than I did in college, and lately I really crave those days of jam-packed music, rehearsals and practice rooms.
So when, on a modest Wednesday night, I find myself encompassed by musos of an inspiring calibre, I am reminded of just how satisfying it is to be a cog in this wheel. As the rich resonance of the works bellows off the wooden floors and out onto the veranda, we haphazardly make our way through with varying degrees of accuracy. But the experience is far from compromised- chamber music seems to often be punctuated with unplanned detours and shrieks of laughter.
These works, this kind of experience, is edifying on another level- one that’s hard to explain but so very palpable when it’s reached.
This is the best kind of soul food.