Originally posted on
I had a rather shocking exchange on Facebook the other day, which was shocking mostly because I hadn’t realized how far I’d come in my thinking, away from what I might call the “old school” of “serious” classically-trained musicians, who are trained to work hard, not to enjoy themselves.
The exchange exemplified for me much of what I think is wrong with the world of classical music these days, and why so few people actually pursue it as a career and succeed, while enjoying happy lives. It is also a key to why such high percentages of musicians suffer from mental illness, as well as physical pain.
It all started with an innocent comment a friend made (who is a fantastic musician who should have an endless supply of excellent students knocking at her door), wondering why people are “scared off” when she suggests that they take lessons in her rather uncommon instrument.