Friday, April 25, 2014

Please don't cut the music!

On April 15, at a Vancouver School Board meeting discussing proposed budget cuts, Roger Cole, principal oboist for the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, read a statement on behalf of Maestro Bramwell Tovey, music director for the VSO.
Today we are posting extracts from this statement and a from a 2010 speech by Tovey that we think says all the right things.
- If you want to read the 2014 statement in full please go HERE.
- If you want to read the 2010 speech please go HERE.
"We believe an education without a significant musical component is no education at all"
"Music is a form of language which reaches every human being. It needs little or no translation. In a school district like Vancouver, where dozens of languages are spoken by our widely diverse community, music is the only language common to everyone"
"Music is the expression of the inner narrative of every child, the common thread of communication to those who participate in a band or orchestra"
"The social benefits of music are extraordinary - If a student holds a musical instrument then he or she can’t hold a knife, or a joint, or a needle or a crack pipe – or a gun".
"If a student is in a choir or a band or an orchestra, they are communicating through the universal art of music at the heart of our community"
"What kind of message does this give to our children about the values of our society? Here’s an instrument. Now give it back" 
This is a comment penned by a young student who had spent his brief life in foster care due to a litany of misfortune that made Beethoven’s disability seem negligible by comparison. "It was the most beautiful building I have ever seen it was the most wonderful music I’ve ever heard it was the greatest day of my life" "That is the power of music – to heal, to inspire, to communicate, to transform and so much else besides" 
"Beethoven had no choice but to live in a world of silence. PLEASE, DO NOT LET YOUR CHOICE BRING SILENCE TO THE WORLD OF A SINGLE CHILD"

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