Music in Motion

Marcus High School Band – Flower Mound, Texas

I gained exposure to much of my favorite Classical music through my experience in public school performing arts. Like Disney’s Fantasia and Fantasia 2000, marching bands and drum & bugle corps animate music with formations, props, and various forms of choreography and dance. These marching ensembles combine art forms in the same way that the opera genre combines vocal and instrumental music, visual art, theater, and technical theater. I am most inspired by those ensembles who choose symphonic pieces such as the Marcus High School Marching Band, Phantom Regiment Drum & Bugle Corps, and Star of Indiana Drum & Bugle Corps.

While Star of Indiana no longer exists, they produced a show called “Blast!”. Instead of performing on a football field with over a hundred people, a couple dozen took the show to the stage. Blast! includes professional brass players, percussionists, and dancers who perform shows on Broadway in the style of drum & bugle corps, but more refined and varied than a typical marching show. Their repertoire includes various famous Classical works as well as jazz, rock, and even techno music. For many young people, just seeing this DVD is inspiration enough to start to play and instrument or take dance lessons.

Many consider Classical music to be boring. These marching and dance ensembles bring out the sheer excitement, electricity, and intense emotion intrinsic in this kind of music. When I write about Classical music, I want to draw from the excitement and show just how much of an incredible experience listening to and performing Classical music can be. I want to set music to videos and slide shows of related paintings, photography, even animated GIFs to convey the meaning and emotion of the music.

6 thoughts on “Music in Motion

  1. Thanks for writing this, Justin.

    I’ve recently been listening to the music of Amadeus on CD. I was particularly struck by how helpful one of the songs was in helping me work through a problem I was having a few days ago when I was feeling powerless to get what I wanted from a big and powerful institution. In the song, a strong and powerful lead vocal is nearly shouting while a second male voice is singing a more pleading theme that is overpowered by the stronger voice. The pleading voice eventually dies out completely and only the strong voice remains. It was helpful for me to use the music as a way to process my feelings in that moment. I love the way Mozart gives a melodic and full voice to almost every instrument and harmonic interplay in his compositions–I find I can listen over and over and keep discovering new aspects of his brilliance as I listen to his music.

    And thanks for the Blast! video — that is an amazing performance!

  2. Write on! I’m looking forward to what else you have to share. I love the idea of putting photography (or even silenced video) to Classical music. I listen to Classical music almost every day at home. It makes way for clear thought.

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