An Affair with Music


by Margaret Lu

Photographed by Noriko Nasu-Tidball

“Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything.” -Plato

clip_image004Four years ago, the students in Jamieson Elementary School were united in one goal, to achieve excellence in the area of fine arts. Luckily, we were taught by an extremely talented and experienced strings teacher, whose dream was to show us how powerful music is and what joy it can bring into one’s life. Throughout the years, the Jamieson students has become skilled in their instruments, and finally learned to appreciate the beauty of music and the wonderful emotions it stirs up in one’s heart.We realized how easy it was to bond with other people with only one thing in common—a love for music.


But then, I remembered that there are so many others in this world who would be thrilled to explore the depth of music but did not have a chance to. Why not create a chance for those people? As a graduate of Jamieson Elementary, I organized some of the most brilliant, inspirational and committed players I know in to an ensemble which we call Crimson Chamber Orchestra, “CCO”.  So far, we already had a few rehearsals and I was pleasantly surprised by each of my fellow player’s unique talent.  I strongly believe that as a group, together we can make a change in the community through music.

clip_image008  As I took a moment to observe our music ensemble during the last rehearsal, I was amazed by every single player.  I still remember the times when we were all making horrible sounds on our instruments and not at all sure what the term “F#” referred to.  And now, looking at my fellow musical friend marvel the world with their beautiful music, a sentiment that cannot be described with words is stirred up in my heart.

To me, music is like bread and butter to mankind.  One of my friends used to tell me that she cannot enjoy her day properly if she did not have her “daily dose of music”.   To every one of us in CCO, music is indeed, almost like a drug that one is addicted to.  Music is our greatest passion, almost like our unrequited love. clip_image010

And, almost with the emotions of a lover, we have all decided to pursue music, to practically woo music, until we can conquer it and claim it as our own.  A few of my friends in CCO are already extremely accomplished musicians, achieving RCM (Royal Conservatory of Music) grades 9 and 10 in the piano and in the violin.  Even at that stage, we still cannot say that we have “conquered” music.  Music as a “lover”, is definitely an appealing but elusive one.  It urges us to follow it’s beauty, but distresses us when we are stunned by the difficulties in it.

But we are going out of our ways to ‘please’ music.  We are for sure, “music’s children”.  When we play music, it’s almost like we’re practically “in” the music, like we’re a part of it.  Music just automatically stirs up so much in our emotional natures.  We’re only preteens, but we have already discovered our soul mate—–music.

I don’t know about the other members in my group, but when I play music, it’s like I’m showing off. Not like I’m showing off to a particular person or persons, but like I’m trying to impress myself.  I feel like I’m trying to reach down, deeper into my soul, trying to show myself who I really am.  Because when I’m playing music, that’s when I find out who “Margaret” actually is.  You will be shocked at how much you can learn about yourself only by playing a selection of music.

clip_image012Music has total control over my body and my mind.  Simply by listening to a light Vivaldi song, my spirits are immediately lifted.  Simply by turning on a Mozart piece, I feel excited.   I also made a hobby from counting how many times I have cried while listening to Beethoven’s “Moonlight Sonata”.

Is “Moonlight Sonata” a heartbreaking movie like “Casablanca” that’s bound to provoke tears from even the most heartless of people?  No.  Is it one of Taylor Swift’s touching break-up singles that reminds you of a similar experience? No.  Is it a tragic story about star-crossed lovers like “Romeo and Juliet”? No. Is it an article about an extremely inspirational person who has suffered so much, yet still survived to tell his/her story?  No.  It’s just a piano sonata written around two hundred years ago written by some German man named Ludwig van Beethoven.  And yet, two hundred years later, it still has the power to make a twelve-year-old cry over and over again, for no apparent reason.  This is why, ladies and gentlemen, I have repeated this fact over and over again—–music can truly touch one’s soul, and it has surely touched ours, over and over again.


Unfortunately, this is our last year in Jamieson Elementary School.  However, I promise to continue CCO for as long as I can.  We are young, bright, and passionate.  We will not give up what we love the most until we have shown the world our passion, persuaded to world to join us in this chase for music, and enjoy with the world the wonderful exhilaration music grants you.

Are you prepared to open your hearts to music?  We, CCO, will not stop until you do.  Music can be joy during the best of your times, and it can also help you through the worst of your times. Accept music into your souls.  Let music be your best friend.


clip_image016Editor’s Note:  We often underestimate the fact that it’s not the young people who need us – we need them, we need their capacity, experience and insight in a particular way…… Please come meet and see how young people are thriving! And enjoy the music!

KCC Creative Artist Series proundy presents….

Margaret Lu and CCO on Sundays, May 5th & June 16th, 2pm – 3:30pm @ Seninor’s Multipurpose Room.

Free for the youth, $6 for adults, pre-registration required. Call 604-257-8100