Meditation: Music is a means of enjoying the ephemeral

I sat on the balcony for a few minutes this morning as the rising sun began to illuminate passing grey clouds, turning them a peachy-orange from below and creamy yellow from above.

Views like this one have inspired visual artists for centuries. But their image is frozen in time, similar to yet completely different from what the eye saw a minute before and a minute after.

What makes the scene particularly compelling is how it is transformed even before our brain can register its approval. The moment is manifestly there, yet completely untouchable.

The best kind of live concert is exactly the same: a succession of beautiful moments, fondly caressed, yet lost the moment we become conscious of them.

A note is stuck, it blooms and it decays. It’s the full cycle of life replayed over and over and over again, yet never exactly the same.


Here’s a fascinating transcription by American flute and marimba duo Zara Lawler and Paul Fadoul of one of my desert island compositions, Dmitri Shostakovich’s Op. 87 Prelude and Fugue in A Major, followed by the original, as played by young Bulgarian-born pianist Christo Popov at the Euterpe Piano Competition a couple of years ago:

John Terauds


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