Cultural Event: Must-have-Mozart
On March 2nd, I went to a musical performance called “Must-Have-Mozart.” A woman from Julliard named Dr. Arlene Shrut played the piano while about thirteen singers sang pieces by Mozart. The songs were beautiful but I honestly would have preferred to hear them without the singers. But it was interesting to hear a different type of music, since Mozart definitely isn’t on my Mp3 player. I used to play piano some when I was younger so I enjoyed hearing it again.
This wasn’t exactly the most popular event. I shared the auditorium with about 25 senior citizens and a few other students. Even so, I’m a huge fan of music and I enjoyed it none-the-less. At the beginning of the concert, everyone received a program that had translations of the songs into English, because they were sung in German. As I was sitting there reading the lyrics to songs such as “Ein Madchen oder Weibchen” and “Vedrai carino,” I realized that although these songs were written in the 1800’s they had similar themes as songs do nowadays. One of the songs was called “In Uomini, in Soldati” which means “In Men, in Soldiers.” This song discussed one woman’s disgust for men and their infidelities. It began with “In men? In soldiers, you hope for fidelity? / For Pete’s sake, don’t let anyone hear you! / They’re all made of the same dough. / Windblown branches, changeable breezes/ Have more stability than men!” This song reminded me of a song that is popular today by a musician named Keri Hilson. The song is called “Breaking Point”; it also shows an anger and disgust for the actions of men. One of the stanzas of the song says “Now ladies, we really should be mad at ourselves/ Cuz see, some women just tolerate way too damn much/ Now I know we gotta choose our battles/ But damn it, every woman gotta breaking point/ And see the next time he’s testin’ your love/ You put your finger in his face and you tell him/ Say my love has a limit.” Although Mozart’s grammar trumps Keri’s, all these lyrics are sending the same message: from 1800 to 2011, in women’s eyes, men are still clueless.
I walked away from this event first of all thinking that I wanted a cookie from Acorn. After I got a cookie, I began thinking about how the meaning of music really hasn’t changed at all. The way we present music, however, has changed. Whether you listen to country, classical, jazz, rock, hip-hop, rap, R&B, techno, or dubstep, you are essentially listening to the same messages. These messages are about love, anger, disappointment, betrayal, anything that we as humans can feel. Even though me and my friends don’t always agree on what the best song is or who really deserved a grammy (Eminem got jipped this year) we can agree that music is something that we can all relate to. Pain, love, or happiness, music is a universal language. Below I have Mozart’s “In Uomini, in Soldati” and Keri Hilson’s “Breaking Point.”
In men, in soldiers, to hope for fideltiy?
Don’t let anybody hear you, for pity’s sake!
All of them are made of the same paste;
the rustling leaves and inconstant breezes
have more stability than men.
Lying tears, fals glances, deceitful voices,
charms are their primary qualities.
They love us only for their own delight;
afterwards they despise us, deny us love;
there is no use asking a barbarian for mercy.
Let us repay, o women, with the same money
this evil kind of indiscreet men;
let us love at our leisure, for our vanity.