Better Together: The Bus Station Sonata
Some things are just better when shared. Like a cup of hot chocolate on a cold winter evening. Or a movie, couch, and blanket on a rainy Saturday afternoon. Or music, well, just about anytime. In fact, there are few things that bring people together more quickly or deeply than a shared piece of music.
The challenge in this day and age, however, is that so few people feel competent to do more than listen. With a generation of budget cuts stripping our schools of music programs, and with a cultural obsession over pop star performances, most people rarely if ever have the chance to actually make music. Where once we were producers of music, joining in a shared, even sacred event, now we are mere spectators.
So what I love about this particular video is the way in which the pianist and director gave the gift of music back to the passengers and passersby in the Haymarket Bus Station in Newcastle, UK. As the director notes, most of the participants were not pianists and, indeed, many had never touched a piano before. Yet on that day, for just a few moments, they were invited to make beautiful music. And the surprise, delight, and wonder that is evident on their faces is priceless.
So what might you invite someone to do today that is better done together? The possibilities, I suspect, are nearly endless.