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Music and Freedom


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The best things in life always happen on a summer night. I don’t know about you, but for me it has always been like that, especially now; almost every night here in Aix-en-Provence is amazing! Tuesday night, though, was more than that. I don’t know how to describe it… I guess I could simply say it was surreal!

We have all been to picnics before, and we have all been to concerts. I don’t think, however, that many of us have attended a private picnic concert. It sounds weird doesn’t it? Well, one of our teachers, Jen, used to sing with a band of jazz manouche when she was a student here in Aix. This being said, she convinced the band to come and play for us on a Tuesday night after we had an unconventional picnic. Why unconventional, you wonder? Let’s just say that the blankets we sat on were laid on concrete, and the place we chose wasn’t far away from the center of Aix; there couldn’t be any other word but unconventional to describe it. These, though, in my opinion, are just insignificant details about that very special night. The truly important thing was the beat, the harmony, the indescribable feeling you have when you realize that you belong to a place, to a moment, to a song, or to anything that makes your body and soul vibrate at the same frequency.

On that Tuesday summer night I belonged to that unconventional picnic concert. The music, the people stopping by, the rounds of applause, the rebellious act of eating on concrete, the passion, and the atmosphere created by all those together made me feel my soul and body vibrating to the rhythm of the night. I worshiped every single second! I said before, in one of my blog posts, that people seem different in old photographs, that they seem somehow happier than we could ever be. When these pictures of me are old and someone looks at them thinking what I think now, well, they won’t be wrong. Not even a bit…

What else could I tell you now, after this, in order to amaze you? Maybe, if you are passionate about art, I could tell you that we were lucky enough to see a wonderful exhibition at Museum Granet entitled From Cezanne to Matisse. It was a pity, though, that we had no guide to help us understand better the artists and their paintings. Even so, actually seeing those paintings in real life, imagining the artist creating those masterpieces, experiencing in some way this feeling, and at the same time also being able to perceive the emotions of all the people who saw and will see the exhibition, made me understand how art brings people together, how art, in any of its forms, has been and will always be a statement, a natural urge to leave something behind that will prove that we have been there.

When I walked outside the museum I was caught in a daytime summer dream filled with philosophical ideas and amazement. It wasn’t hot anymore, and dark clouds gathered in the sky; I didn’t even notice that until it started raining. You know how in movies they don’t care about the rain? They don’t run from it, they just embrace it, and it embraces them; they are soaked, but they smile, and sometimes they even laugh and sing and dance; I never had the courage to do that until that time when I walked out of the Museum Granet and I felt as if there was not a single thing on Earth that I want to do that I cannot!

I must have seemed mad to all those people around, but for the first time in my life, I didn’t care at all… I was free… Best, Monica

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