Ohio University Wind Symphony and Symphonic Band Performance
Start writing a post

Ohio University's Wind Symphony & Symphonic Band Performance

How classical music can open up a well of emotions.


Happiness. Fear. Alarm. Love. Ohio University's very own Wind Symphony and Symphonic Band set out to spark many emotions in the audience. And they were, of course, successful. No one would expect any less from a band who has recorded music in Carnegie Hall. The use of sound texture in all six of the inspired pieces of music that both OU bands performed assisted in telling unique stories and conveying meaning to us, the audience. With any great story, emotions are bound to grab hold of whoever is listening. I caught myself laughing out loud during one song and on the verge of tears the very next. Before September 27th this year, I had no idea that classical music could affect me in such a way.

Part of what makes us human is our emotions, and music is one way we are able to convey them. It doesn't even matter what language you speak for you to feel the music's tone as long as the composer did their job correctly. I beautiful example of human emotions communicated through music would be Symphony No. 2 "VOICES" by James Stephenson. He specifically composed this song with the language barrier in mind. Stephenson explains his inspiration, stating, "I was awaiting an international flight when I heard the distinct sound of laughter coming from behind me. Because I could not see the people laughing, it occurred to me that it was a universal language of happiness; one which cannot evoke any judgment based on racial, religious, gender, social, or any other type of prejudice." It definitely was a happy sounding song, for the most part, and even included a voice within the composition. Sometimes, however, the instruments sounded like screams. It was sweet and sickly at the same time, much like humanity in general. Stephenson seemed to capture human emotion in this song, and the Ohio University Wind Symphony did a wonderful job in conveying these emotions to the audience.

Another composition was by a woman by the name of Julie Giroux. She wrote her song "Riften Wed" based on the popular video game Skyrim. According to Giroux herself, "'Riften Wed' is the music for loves and unions, past and present such as this. A love, a wedding, a lifetime shared by two people in the middle of a storm that threatens to tear them apart. Where 'til death do us part' is not only a reality, it's a given. Where love is a gift worthy of all the joy and pain it demands." This particular composer happens to be gay, which adds to the much-needed diversity of modern classical music.

Before I heard this song live, I predicted that it would create warm, fuzzy emotions for the listeners based on the fact that it was essentially about love. I was gravely mistaken. As I finally got to listen to it live, I felt somber and almost scared for who/what I love most. I thought of my aging thirteen-year-old dog, who has lived as my companion for most of my life. At that moment I realized that I would actually die for those I truly love, and I think that this was the whole point of the composition. Skyrim, the video game that "Riften Wed" was based on, is a very brutal and violent game with mortality rules similar to the real world. Marrying someone in the game takes "until death do you part" very literally. If your partner dies, they won't respawn. They are gone forever, and you are alone. It chilled me to my core listening to this piece. The piano notes especially got to me, as they almost sounded like the tears of the bride/groom whose spouse was killed. It was a beautiful piece filled with raw emotion, adding to the purpose of the band performing as a whole.

Ohio University's very own Wind Symphony and Symphonic Band invoked many emotions in the audience through a rich variety of compositions and instruments. Their choice in compositions took the audience through an emotional journey filled with happiness, despair, and even love. The fact that music can do such a thing to a person is a miracle in and of itself, but the writers of these songs knew exactly how to tug at the heartstrings and even open some tear ducts. With this experience, I now understand was it truly means to be moved by classical music.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

Reasons Why Taking A Girls Trip Is Always A Good Idea

After all, laughter is the best medicine.

Reasons Why Taking A Girls Trip Is Always A Good Idea
Libby Redd

Sometimes all you need is a weekend to be in the presence of your best friends.

Keep Reading... Show less
Ethan Menzies

*Cue Epic Newsroom Music*

Keep Reading... Show less

4th Of July Is The Best Time To Vacation

The 4th of July is truly an amazing time to be with the people who make you feel the most alive and appreciate all the freedom that we do have.

4th Of July Is The Best Time To Vacation

My family doesn’t vacation much. But my earliest childhood memory of vacation is going down to the beach for the 4th of July.

Keep Reading... Show less

Is Meaningful Casual Sex A Paradox?

Why noncommittal sex is more complicated than we'd like to think.


I lost my virginity to a graduate student from Los Angeles. We’d met at a rundown cafe whose Yelp page complained of an alleged rat infestation. His name was Ken and he was 25. What drew me to him was the peculiar way his mouth was perpetually fixed into a sideways, half-moon shape that was like a smirk but without any trace of smugness. But the two most striking parts of Ken by far were the dinner plate roundness of his face and his small, expressionless teddy bear eyes. Of the things that mattered to him, there was his best friend, a college dropout who sold computer parts in Toronto, and sex.

Keep Reading... Show less

God, What's Next?

What you're probably asking yourself during your season of waiting.

God, What's Next?

We spend most of our lives waiting for something. Maybe you're waiting for a job opportunity to open up, or for a professor to email you back because you procrastinated on your assignment, or maybe you're waiting for the next chapter in your life to start. Whatever the case maybe be for you I want to let you know that your season of waiting is not in vain! It may seem like it but your season of waiting is a crucial part in your walk with Christ. You may not have a walk with Christ and I encourage you to be open to starting a relationship with him but even your time of waiting isn't in vain. Waiting is a hard thing to do but it is so worth it in the end. The Bible even tells us this in Ecclesiastes.

Keep Reading... Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments