Look under your feet

The lesson which life constantly repeats is to ‘look under your feet.’
You are always nearer to the divine and the true sources of your power than you think.
The lure of the distant and the difficult is deceptive.
The great opportunity is where you are.
Do not despise your own place and hour.
Every place is under the stars.
Every place is the center of the world.

— John Burroughs, Studies in Nature and Literature




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Minuet I
Title: Minuet I Composer: Greg Smith Instrumentation: Piano Duet Level: Piano I – level I (5 finger position, left and right hands) Product medium: PDF score & MP3 accompaniment track (Audio sample of accompaniment track only)
No art is equal to music
“I firmly believe, nor am I ashamed to assert, that next to theology no art is equal to music; for it is the only one, except theology, which is able to give a quiet and happy mind. This is manifestly proved by the fact that the devil, the author of depressing care and distressing disturbances, […]
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Motion and art
“The statue is concentrated in one moment of perfection. The image stained upon the canvas posses no spiritual element of growth or change. If they know nothing of death, it is because they know nothing of life, for the secrets of life and death belong to those, and those only, whom the sequence of time […]
Behind the Screen
Title: Behind the Screen (silent film soundtrack) Composer: Greg Smith Instrumentation: Piano Product medium: PDF score (45 pages) Background: Written by: Vincent Bryan, Charlie Chaplin, Maverick Terrell Starring: Eric Campbell, Charles Chaplin, Edna Purviance Film released: 1916 Sample:
“Personality is to a man what perfume is to a flower.” – Charles M. Schwab, The Ten Commandments of Success
Communication with the audience
Igor Stravinsky contemplates the ultimate goal of an artist versus reality: “Art postulates communion [between the artist and the audience], and the artist has an imperative need to make others share the joy which he experiences himself. But in spite of that need, he prefers to direct and frank opposition to apparent agreement which is […]
Searching for expression
When my students compose, I prefer them to be mistaken if they must make mistakes, but to remain natural and free rather than wishing to appear other than what they are. I remember a day when Stravinsky was dining here. He took his neighbor at the table by the lapels, violently! His neighbor crushed, said […]
How not to get an audience
Satie’s ballet Relâche (1924) had trouble pulling a crowd: the title translates as “this performances is cancelled”. Source: Lawrence, Christopher (2001) Swooning.  Sydney: Random House, p.70.
Form and content
“I think that one way toward a more intelligent and involved appraisal is through a connection with the pieces, and that one way to develop that connection is to talk about what the pieces mean to people who have spent a lot of time with them: the content, if you will. This approach can also […]