"Music has the power to inspire; therefore, musicians have the opportunity to change lives."
I had the privilege of working with Mrs. McVeigh at a music education conference called NextDirection, which is held annually through the Wisconsin Choral Director's Association over three days for high students aspiring to be musicians, college chaperones, and a master conductor. I was rejuvenated at this conference for more than teaching and making music, but learning and living my life to the fullest, finding every moment I could to make a difference in the lives of others, and allow myself to be inspired by them. Despite the obstacles I was facing at that time, the music and the message of the experience, brought me back to everything I wanted to be and how I wanted to live my life. I often think back to this weekend just two years ago, and find myself so motivated for more.
The title of this blog is "Singing. Being. Living. Seeing" taken from Frank Ticheli's choral work Earthsong. He opens the song with the text "Sing. Be. Live. See." I was inspired by this work that was a part of an interesting moments of my lifetime. When I thought of the title, I wanted it to be more than just Sing. Be. Live. See; what I wanted is to convey the thought that we are continually singing, being, living, seeing. Yes, it is a choice whether or not to do anything with our lives, but it is just that - a choice. We have a choice to live on, with song, with all of our being, and seeing the world and music around us. We have the opportunity to make a difference and be inspirational for others, but also allow for inspiration by others. What a better purpose in live but to keep going and moving listening to "the music all around us."
No matter age or skill, WE have the power to change lives...each and every person. For we are all musicians in this world - using whatever we find as harmonious and moving, as music is for me and so many others - we have the obligation to show those precious movements of our own songs, to the world, for anyone and everyone to listen and see.
"Pain is power. It's all in how you endure it. Do what you love and love what you do with all your heart.
~Dr. Joe Miller of Westminster Choir College, 2009 NextDirection Master Conductor