Friday, February 25, 2011

Weekly Music Nugget 5, Mothers

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     This is my plug for the value of mothers in the musical growth of a child.  I speak from my own experience.
     When I finished my Dashees Garden Tuesday post this week I reviewed the role family played in my decision to become a musician instead of pursuing other interests, like needlework and sewing.
     My mother loved music, and our home was filled with all kinds.  She took me to orchestra concerts, ballet, opera, and musicals.  We heard the radio and records at home, everything from Tubby the Tuba to early rock and roll to Beethoven and Bach. She played the piano and sang,  the latter including bedtime serenades when I was young.  She took vocal lessons; I remember hearing her practice.  She gave a recital.
     Sometimes she tried to involve my sister and me when she was at the piano.  We pretended and danced when young; later she was my first piano teacher.  When she saw that was not in my best interest, she tried someone else.  When I desired to play the violin, she supported and encouraged me, even when I rebelled against practicing and  became tempermental and uncooperative when asked to play for others (what a pain I was!!).  Many mothers would have thrown in the towel, but apparently she sensed that I really needed my violin and lessons.
     My extended family did much to encourage other interests, but I only saw them a few times each year.  My mother hated to sew and did not do handwork until middle age.  She was a talented decorator, but I suppose it was easier to share music.  My grandmothers and aunts were second mothers to me in many ways, but it was my mother who had the greatest impact.  I wonder if I would have chosen music if the tables were turned and she had been an artist and my aunts musicians.  I doubt my desire and her support would have been as strong.
     As I contemplated this I became more aware of the gift of my mother and her strong influence in my life.  Mothers have a powerful influence on children, including shaping their desires!

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In addition to being a violist, I am a wife and mother (three sons). I dabble in writing, handwork, sewing and photography.