Classical Condundrum

As a teen,
classical music was
my greatest love,
my strongest passion —

But the business of it
was catty, and shallow, and
competitively spiteful:
all I cared about
was the music

So, I elected
to find another line of work,
choosing to continue to play music,
but not be in the grind of competitions
for scholarships, recital time, and so on

And, these days, if anything,
it has gotten worse.

The most beautiful, thoughtful
performances can be found on youtube,
where commenters savage the performers
with the type of criticism that makes you wonder
if almost anybody that listens to classical music
actually likes it

But then, i take a deep breath, and remember:
youtube comment-leavers do not represent all people,
they typically represent the worst type of people:
cowardly, petty, bitter, and unaccomplished, themselves

The wisest choice anyone can make
is to never read comments on youtube

So i listen to classical music,
and continue to explore and
learn to play various pieces:
exploring unknown repertoire,
and enjoying performances when i hear them
rather than criticizing them

I know the critical mindset:
it is simultaneously self-righteous about criticism
and unable to accept any aimed at them

But these are just shadows of joylessness,
and i can pass them by in silence

For the music is the thing,
And always was.

We will always have reactions to what we hear,
we just don’t need to spend so much time
convincing others to have the same one

Because that is monumentally


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