Favorite Music

Music has always been important to me. I've been through (but not yet quite done with) my pop music and country music phases. Now I mostly listen to classical music, from baroque to modern, especially opera.

I know, it's an odd preference. Or is it, really? I discovered opera late in life, and it hit me like a ton of bricks. Do you like live theater? Opera is live theater, enhanced with music. Do you like orchestral music? Opera interprets the music with drama (or is it the other way around?). How about film? The sound track of a film amplifies the drama in a very operatic way--that is, it deepens the emotional content and illuminates aspects of the film that do not otherwise come through. (Try watching a film with the sound track turned off!)

Well, ok, opera is a bit more abstract than film. Maybe an appreciation of abstraction in art is an aquired taste. To me, if it takes the soprano five minutes to sing about how she feels about the betrayal of her lover, that is not a pause in the action. It is five minutes in which I learn to feel what she feels like in a detailed way that could not be conveyed in real time.

Some of my favorite opera resources, in no particular order:

Of course, it may well be that enjoying opera is a rather specialized idiosyncrasy. But if you enjoy live theatre, and if you think musical scores in movies add to the experience, you may want to give opera a try sometime. (See it as a live performance first!)