Saturday, October 1, 2011

RE: Wesley, Value and Skill

In Wesley's latest post he asked if the Civic musical highway had less musical value than other music that takes more skill to create and if the value of music be measured by the skill requirement?

First I want to ask how does this take less skill to create? That took hours of mathematical formulating, designing, and constructing to create this road. Yet, I would say that skill is a factor in the value of a musical piece. Surely simple songs can be valuable as well, but for many sonatas and concertos I can think of, the most beautiful ones take the most skill. Let's take trumpet for example, with more practice and skill one is able to achieve higher notes. The first few months you can only play about an octave, but with time you are able to play two or more. The more notes you can play, the more complex songs you can play. The more one practices the better tone quality and technique they achieve as well. The music played by a professional trumpet player is considered more aesthetically valuable than anything played by an amateur.
Skill and value apply for any instrument as well. Piano involves more skill than just the right notes at the right time; technique is key. If a certain piece is extremely difficult and requires someone with 30 years of experience to play it, it is more valuable because not everyone can do it and a lot of time went into it to acquire the skills necessary to play it.

Question: Can musical skill be objectively measured?