Archive for October, 2009

The artistic purpose behind The Pangean Orchestra

October 26, 2009

The Pangean Orchestra

Why do I want to form this orchestra? Last week in my blog I told you that there were 2 main reasons that I am working to form a world orchestra:

1 – The social reason – Leading a movement to showcase equality of cultures/instruments and breaking down the violent wall of ignorance

2 – The music – this is the fun part. Life is way to short to not have fun, right?

So here we go, the music!

I have been in and out of the professional musician world for about 13 years. I love music! I also love most styles of music. I’ve worked in several genres of music from this country and many others. What I came to realize is that there must be a way in this dawning century to take elements and instruments from around the world and sit them together in a room with one another.

Symphony’s of the past came about because brilliant composers made use of what was around them. Today, what is around us is incredibly staggering. We have access to so much more than our ancestors had. It would be a crime not to make use of these resources.

So I feel like it is time to reinvent the orchestra. To take a large number of musicians from around the world and start our own century’s soundtrack. I believe if Mozart was alive he would be my ace on this one. I believe he would be feverishly working to get some great music created with the wide assortment of instruments we have here.

The Pangean Orchestra is an ensemble dedicated to creating this centuries music. We will bring the orchestra back into the mainstream. Remember, going to the orchestra a few hundred years ago was like going to a rock concert. It was the most exciting thing to do. Is going to your town’s symphony the most exciting way for you to spend a Friday night? How about a Tuesday afternoon?  Many people say orchestral music is “relaxing”. Mozart would drive a fork into his eye if he heard his music being described that way…. well, maybe he wouldn’t. Maybe, Beethoven would though – he was kind of crazy!

There you have it, great music and cultural enlightenment. What could be a better thing to work for? …Chocolate probably


Why I’m working to create The Pangean Orchestra

October 19, 2009

The Pangean Orchestra

I get asked almost daily why I want to create this world orchestra. Apparently most sane people don’t decide that they are going to start an orchestra. They also don’t decide that starting a traditional orchestra would be too easy, so let’s instead make one that has instruments from all over the world!

There are really 2 driving forces for me, one is social, one is artistic.

For this blog I’ll focus on the social purpose of the orchestra. To do this, I have to tell a story that occurred about 6 years ago.

In the Spring of 2003 I was in a mail store waiting to return a defunct music keyboard that I had foolishly bought on ebay from a fraudulent seller. While I was waiting there, a man behind me was speaking very loud on his cell phone. Back then, not everyone had those things.

As I continued to push the defective keyboard forward in line, I began to inevitably listen to his conversation. “Yeah man, why don’t you come over later, we’ll have some beers, and we’ll watch the bombs drop!”

I immediately felt ill and like I was about to vomit all over the damn keyboard. I felt so bad, angry, nauseous…

that our society could be so callas as to show the bombings of Iraq on TV and where our neighbors would get together and watch homes exploding like it was a football game.  If our bombs were indeed smart, they stole the intelligence from the citizens.

I wanted to do something positive towards understanding various cultures. I wanted to be part of a solution to where people could fear each other less and listen to each other more.

I’m a musician so it seemed best to do it through the medium that I’m best at. I have been playing with musicians from all over the world and doing it in a spirit of sharing. We blend music from various times and cultures to create new works.

It has been fun but I knew I needed something more.  That’s when it hit me:

To create a full orchestra of instruments from around the world.  The vastness of the group and our size will allow for the inclusiveness we are after. Small scale projects are great, but now I’m ready for something more…

in the next blog I’ll cover my artistic reasons for starting the group