Music students are studying an art form and this makes it different to most other subjects they will study. Making music satisfies a basic human need to create, and making music is very important in every culture.
“Musicians can move people to tears. They can inspire the soul. Musicians can make people feel happy or sad. They can relax people who are stressed. They can soothe or stimulate us.
Musicians help to set the mood on many occasions. They play an important part at funerals and at weddings, at parties and at worship, at the ‘big game’ and at a candlelight dinner. Musicians and music permeate our whole lives.” ¹
Learning to make music should not be treated flippantly or lightly. It should be approached with a sense of wonder, and a feeling that it is very important.
Fun is important, but being serious is important too.
Every life needs some fun but children will soon tire of fun if that is all they do. Sometimes we all, children and adults alike, need to be serious about something. We need to stretch ourselves and challenge ourselves. That is when we grow and learn. Sometimes we need to feel the warm glow of satisfaction when we work hard at something and achieve a worthwhile result.
Sometimes we choose activities that are not fun.
Learning to play the piano can be compared to climbing a mountain or to an athlete striving for peak fitness. Mountaineers climb mountains because they want to. Sometimes it is really hard work, sometimes it is risky and many sacrifices are required. Training to run a marathon requires effort, discipline, and sacrifice.
Mountaineers and athletes often push their bodies and their minds to the limit and sometimes even beyond the limit. I don’t think they would describe what they do as fun. That would be rather incongruous. But there are obviously rewards that go deeper, and are far more satisfying, than merely having fun.
Sometimes we want to make a long term commitment to some activity that will challenge us on many levels. This kind of commitment can affect the way we live our lives, and eventually determine the kind of person we become.
¹From Now I Love Music Practice