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Thoughts from a Musician's Heart


Our orchestra recently performed a few pieces that inspired me to contemplate the emotion of

love and its context in music. I'm sure we all have our favorite works of music or particular

composers that we adore. Which of your favorite pieces stirs up deep emotion or transports your

mind and heart to a place of peace? Is there a specific instrument or ensemble to which you


A few of the selections we recently performed are the Korngold Violin Concerto, Bloch's Nigun

(violin and orchestra), and Mahler's First Symphony. The most unfamiliar piece to me was

Korngold's Violin Concerto I was so taken with the soaring

melodies and rich harmonies in the first and second movements. Mahler surprises us with an

intimate and passionate melody in the key of D flat in the middle of the last movement Bloch's Nigun (Improvisation) is from Baal Shem, Three

Pictures from Hassidic Life In this movement, the music

sounds like a tumultuous outcry of pleading in prayer. Perhaps you will listen to these pieces and

have a completely different opinion or reaction, but I was intrigued to know what inspired these

composers to write such emotional music. We may never know what inspired such

compositional mastery, but I believe each of these composers must have experienced deep love

in their lifetimes.

As I listened to each of the pieces above, I found myself focusing on God's unconditional love.

Whether or not a composer knows this love, I believe God can use a person's music to draw you

closer to Him.

From Isaiah 54:10

For the mountains may depart

and the hills be removed,

but my steadfast love shall not depart from you,

and my covenant of peace shall not be removed,"

says the Lord, who has compassion on you.

From Colossians 3:14

And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.

Here are few other noteworthy pieces I encourage you to check out:

Romance by Gerald Finzi

Serenade by Edward Elgar – Second movement

Romance for Violin and Orchestra by Antonin Dvorak

I encourage you to find a few of your favorite pieces, and while listening to them, meditate on

scripture and draw close to God


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