About me

I am an active composer and organizer of music events. I share a monthly Music as Meditation concert with listeners and fellow musicians and I organize several concerts of new music each year. I use this blog to tell people about my musical endeavors.

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Music as Meditation

Music as Meditation 

Sunday, March 5, 2017 at Christ Church in North Conway, NH

Did you ever feel the need to step into a space where words are few and far between? Music as Meditation is a monthly concert designed to facilitate reflection. There may be some speaking at the beginning and there is usually a written program, but once the music starts, it continues, with spaces of silence in between the pieces. The gathering offers listeners a chance for reflection and musicians a chance to share music. 

For me, music often acts as a balm to a heart sore from living in our modern world. The act of meditating frequently takes the form of playing music--for my own quietude and as a way to get in touch with what some Eastern religions might call the source. Music as Meditation is my attempt to share this spirit with listeners.

If you are a regular at Music as Meditation, you might note how often I use nature pictures to advertise the event. My reason for that  is that the experience of playing music I "hear" from the ether resembles, for me, the experience of walking through the words, or working in my garden. It is restorative, perhaps because it helps me really understand my time-limited and small place in the universe; it helps me stay in the present moment.

This picture above helped me to think about the what Charles Eisenstein calls "The Law of Return." Though I don't think I can say that I am always at peace when I think of this law and how it affects me and the people I love, looking at Birch Trees with peeling bark and lots of epiphytes helps me approach peaceful contemplation of returning.

The music in this month's Meditation follows this kind of theme. It is cyclical, but ever-changing. I will play another installment in my quest to learn all of Edward McDowell's First Modern Suite (opus 10). I'll also play a selection from my new friend Harriet Katz called Skein of Silk. Doris Henney will join me in this work. I'll be playing the same piece at a concert in Baltimore later this month--an endeavor I find just as important to my current self as Music as Meditation.

Some of the music this month comes from my concert schedule on April 29th called Hearing Color; Seeing Sound. I've been having a great time living with a painting by Stephen Kull, pictured above. I see new colors and think of new ideas every time I see this painting. My friend and colleague Mike Sakash is going to take a turn at babysitting this painting next to see what kind of music it stirs up in him. We will both be sharing our results at Fryeburg Academy on April 29th. Watch this spot for a blog about this show when it is a little closer in time.

Music as Meditation takes place on first Sundays of each month at Christ Episcopal Church on the corner of Pine and Main Streets in North Conway. Free admission. Call 447-2898 or e-mail me at ellen.m.schwindt@gmail.com for more information. The event is free. I hope to share the reflection time with you.