The formation of the inner ear and the education of feelings

Teaching traditionally begins with reading.  This happens because music is handed down through the written text and not by oral tradition, which is completely disappeared.  Therefore, since we know music through writing, the first step according to tradition is to learn to read. 

Starting with reading is profoundly wrong: connecting the reading with hearing the sound and looking for it on the keyboard is something very complex. 

Instead, we should start with one thing at a time.  In a preliminary way it is necessary that the inner ear already possesses as many sounds as possible. 

What is the inner ear? 

We don't have sounds already inside us, but we build them one at a time, just as we build the vowels and consonants. 

Physically this happens in the following way: the musical sound is a regular vibration of the air, therefore the eardrum, hit by this vibration, records the phenomenon, transforms it into an electrical impulse and transmits the information to the cerebral cortex through a chain of nerve cells that reacts in millionths of a second.  That sound can be recognized if already memorized, otherwise a hypothesis is made.  The hypothesis can be accepted and verified by the brain, otherwise another hypothesis is made until a new sound is constructed and sent into memory.  We actually recognize everything we see based on the circuit in our brain

The student should be made to listen to a sound that lasts a few seconds, preferably by singing or even playing it on the keyboard (as long as he does not see which key it is).  After leaving the student enough time to build the sound that was emitted, he should sing it.  Singing means emitting, creating sound with one's body, not through an instrument.  It is very important for the student to sing, because when a sound is well fixed in his mind, he must look for it on the keyboard (obviously setting an area in which to look).  When he will find it he will understand that the sound he had stored in the brain, and that it sang, corresponded to the key.  Later, not immediately, he is taught how to write the sound that he has stored, sung and played.  The student over the time will perceive that the sound he sees written corresponds to the sound he has in his head, and that he knows how to sing; it is not just a sound that simply corresponds to a key. 

The inner ear is precisely the synaesthetic ability to imagine sounds through sight, simply by looking at a score.  The advantage of developing this ability is remarkable: it eliminates many executive approach problems and it allows you to get to music more easily.  

The score is nonetheless a mathematical schematization of music.  The “solfege” traditional study does not allow us to easily imagine music: the univocal rhythmic focus inevitably sacrifices the expressive meaning. Developing the inner ear is so important because it allows you to design the interpretation of music before having to face any manual problem.  With the inner ear adequately developed, the musical reading will have a sentimental impact - the feeling that you usually have when you play. 

As musicians, our task is not to describe what we feel, but to be able to transmit it.  We must therefore recognize the emotion we receive by reading the music, and process it.  To do this it takes an education of feelings, which today's society does not do or does very little. 

The analysis of sentiment must lead to the creation of images.  The imagination that comes from one's life experience comes into play.  This sentiment-image must then become a story.  Our direction needs to go from music to storytelling: only in this way can emotions be transmitted to the public.

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