5 Classical Music Myths

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Welcome to LivingPianos.com. I’m Robert Estrin. Today I’m going to tell you about 5 classical music myths. I’m going to finally put these myths to rest! I hear these things all the time. But usually from people who don’t have much exposure to classical music. They just think these things are true, but they’re really not. Are they 100% categorically false? Not all of them. But generally, these things are not necessarily true:

Myth #1 – Classical music is relaxing.

People will say they like classical music because it’s relaxing. And it’s true that some classical music is relaxing. There’s some beautiful music on the piano as well as other instruments. But classical music isn’t just relaxing. It can elicit a wide variety of emotions. It can be angry. It can be scary. It can be exciting! It can be relaxing. It can be contemplative. It can be humorous. There’s a whole range of emotions. It’s not just relaxing. So if you want relaxing music, there are some pieces that are relaxing. For example, Mozart and Brahms offer relaxing music, however. a lot of their music is not relaxing at all! There’s a lot more to classical music than just being relaxing

Myth #2 – Classical music is serious.

I just mentioned that classical music can be humorous. There are many places where Beethoven and other composers have elements of humor in their music. It’s not all serious! Like I said before, classical music has a whole range of emotions.

Myth #3 You have to have training to appreciate classical music

If you have training, it may help you to appreciate classical music. But simply listening to classical music is all you need to appreciate it. If you listen enough you will develop an understanding and appreciation for the music. Listen to the same piece more than once, because you may capture more the second, third or fourth time listening to a piece as you become more familiar with it. So you do not need training to enjoy classical music.

Myth #4 – Classical music is boring.

Once again, if you take the time to become familiar with a piece of classical music, you may find that it’s incredibly enriching! There’s so much there that you might not capture in one listening. It might just go right over your head the first time you listen to it. So you think it’s boring because you didn’t get it. It’s like learning a concept that is a little bit hard to grasp. You might just decide it is too boring and give up. But if you just stay with it a little longer, you may come to understand the concept you didn’t get the first time you are exposed to it. But once you spend the time to become familiar with it, it can be really exciting and enriching once you understand it. The same thing is true with classical music. Once you become familiar with a piece of classical music, it’s not boring, far from it.

Myth #5 – Classical music is for snobs.

This one is tough. Unfortunately, since classical music is not supported by the government, at least in the United States, the only way that it can exist is by donors. So if you do go to the symphony or to the opera, there’s the exclusive section with the gold plaques honoring the donors. And then during intermission. they’re sipping champagne behind velvet ropes. You might say these people are snobs. But thank goodness for these snobs! If they didn’t support the symphony and the opera, as well as chamber music and concert halls, we wouldn’t even have classical music! So you might think of them as snobs. And when you’re on the other side of the velvet ropes, it might feel that way. But in reality, they have a passion for music and they have the means to bring music to people. That is a great service to the community. Are some of them snobs? Absolutely. Some people do it for the wrong reasons. They want to get dressed up and be looked up to. There’s some of that. But the classical music world is so underfunded. They’ll take any support they can get!

Generally speaking, classical music is not just for snobs. It’s for everyone! Once you become familiar with a few key pieces, you’ll fall in love with them. Maybe at first you’ll think those are the only pieces that are worth listening to. But when you open up your horizons and listen to other music, you’ll realize there’s a world of great music for you to enjoy!

Thanks so much for joining me, Robert Estrin here at LivingPianos.com, Your Online Piano Resource.

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6 thoughts on “5 Classical Music Myths”

  1. Regarding Myth #3, my husband had no training in classical music. His mother convinced him he had no musical ability. Couldn’t carry a tune in a bucket. I gave up trying to teach him piano after the first lesson. He was first exposed to classical music in high school, and listened to records from the library. His favorite composer was Beethoven. He can tell a composition is by Mozart. I never tested him to see if he could tell the difference between Mozart and Haydn. I can’t even always do that, in spite of being classically trained since the age of 3. Classical music is all we ever listened to in our home, and we have a collection of recordings.

  2. You are right, of course. It suffice to appreciate a few pieces of classical music to fall in love with it. Of course, not all classical music, but enough to learn a new piece month after month, after all we do not like every pop or blues song and the same is with classical music.

    1. There is a world of music out there. Classical music encompasses countless composers from around the world from different centuries. There is so much to explore!

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