Friday, February 5, 2010

Music To Soothe The Savage Beast

If you ride the bus to and from work during rush hour, you can't miss the profusion of riders listening to their iPods or mp3 players. Often, as I sit facing the row across from me and see 4 riders sitting side by side, listening to their ipods, I can't help but imagine what they must be listening to. Are they listening to metal first thing in the morning? Some electronica to go with their coffee buzz? Or some easy-going "dentist chair" music to stop themselves from going crazy on a jammed packed bus?

I, myself, recently added 40 of the world's best opera arias onto my iPod to go with to what I normally listen to. An experiment to see if it'd help bring the "aggro" down while being crammed like sardines on public transportation, with its jerky stop and go motions and heat blasting to unbearable temperatures.

You know what? It's working for me. Listening to the sounds an orchestra makes or a chorus singing in unison makes for a less frustrated me when I roll into work.

So whenever an opera aria comes on (my iPod is on shuffle), I'd imagine that everyone around me is plugged into the same operatic track. I also picture them dressed to the nines in ballgowns and tuxedos.

It's what helps me pass the time on the bus.

Inspired by my daily commute to and from work, today's lunchtime poll asks: What was the last opera aria / classic music piece you listened to?

From our Twitter friends:

@davidscoville - Ceasar in Egypt "La giustizia ha gia sull'arco" - Handel

@trishussey - looks like Suite for Solo Cello No. 1 by J.S. Bach played by Yo-Yo Ma

@kattlea - Le Cri de merlin - R. Murray Schafer - the last piece of classical music I listened to. It's brilliant!

@dannyweis - Swan Lake

From our Facebook friends:

Sean Veley - Bartok's String Quartet No. 1, played live by the Tokyo String Quartet (all on Stradivarious instruments) in Sechelt, BC this past Sunday. Awesome!

Chen Li - Lilium by Kumiko Noma.... incredible piece.

And for those curious, the last opera track I listened to this morning was Rusulka, Op.114 B. 203 Act 1: "Song to the Moon" by Dvorak

~ Ling Chan

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