OBT day 13

#OBTChallenge Day 13

My new goal on the blog for a while is to post one “bright thing” most days. (The original goal was every day, but it now seems like several times a week is more reasonable.) This can be a tough time of year for those of us, like me, who struggle with anxiety and depression. The news from the wider world, especially these days, compounds those challenges. I’m finding it helpful to put some energy out as often as possible.

Today’s post features music. This is a recording I made last week of the first movement of Ludwig van Beethoven’s Sonata Op. 13, called the “Pathetique.”

I’m posting this for a couple of reasons. The recording isn’t the best quality; my piano needs some work, and my phone is positioned so close to the keyboard that sometimes, in the right hand, you get a tack piano effect. ( 😉 ) But recording myself playing this movement at all felt like going out on a limb. I find it hard to make recordings, much harder even than live performance, and I’m always scared to share them. This piece is much “riskier” and more intricate than most of the stuff I do record and share. It was a push to get myself to do it, but I got tired of my anxiety telling me how much I couldn’t do. This is my way of saying, I know I’ve got the skills, and I can do this if I want. All of us – especially those of us with anxiety and depression – sometimes need to remember that we’re stronger and more powerful than we think.

I also wanted to post this piece because Beethoven is one of my great heroes. We’re used to thinking of him as the “deaf genius,” taking for granted the fact that he wrote extraordinary music in spite of a severe physical impediment. We don’t think as often what it was really like for him to struggle with his hearing loss, and to fear that someday, he might not be able to make or compose music at all. We also don’t think as often about the fact that his deafness drove him to change the way he wrote music, to get all of his ideas out while he could, because he felt he was in a race against time. His music was revolutionary, explosive, and permanently changed the course of music history.

These days, with the bombardment of dark news from around the world, it’s easy to feel insignificant and powerless. I love the reminder Beethoven offers of the kind of difference one person can make, in spite of the worst challenges, when driven by determination and absolute commitment.

Please enjoy the video below.

As always, thanks for visiting, and stop back again soon. If you like what you see here, please share! Also think about posting your own bright thing somewhere on social media today. It could be a photo, a drawing, a poem, some music: anything that makes you smile and puts some light out in the world. Bonus points if it’s something you create yourself. 🙂

If you post your OBT on Facebook or Twitter, you can tag me (@kfaatz925 on Twitter) and use the hashtag #OBTChallenge. I’d love to see what you share! If you’re not on social media but would like to share something with me to post, crediting you of course, please email me at kfaatz925@gmail.com.

 

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