Am Ende seines Lebens konnte Ludwig van Beethoven überhaupt nichts mehr hören: Er war ertaubt und kommunizierte mit seiner Umgebung nur noch über sogenannte «Konversationsbücher», in denen Besucher ihre Fragen an ihn eintrugen. Das Mahler Chamber Orchestra, das gemeinsam mit Leif Ove Andsnes im Rahmen der «Beethoven Journey» die fünf Klavierkonzerte des Komponisten in Luzern zur Aufführung bringt, knüpft an dieses Schicksal an: Mit dem Projekt «Feel the Music» öffnen sie gehörlosen und schwerhörigen Kindern aus Luzern in Workshops sowie mit Proben- und Konzertbesuchen die Welt der Musik und stellen ihnen die Arbeit eines Orchesters vor. Eine der mitwirkenden Musikerinnen berichtet über ihre Erfahrungen.
My name is Emma Schied. I’m an oboist in the Mahler Chamber Orchestra and I’m taking part in the Feel the Music project in Lucerne this week. I’ve been very lucky to have participated in all but one of the Feel the Music projects since it started, and I’m very excited about bringing it to Lucerne. I’ve loved working with children from different cultures and backgrounds all over Europe and I’ve been looking forward to getting to know the children here.
This Friday we worked with 22 deaf and hearing impaired children between the ages of 10 and 16 at the Heilpädagogisches Zentrum Hohenrain. We visited the children in the school. We started by playing rhythmic games with them and introduced them to our instruments, showing them what they are made of and how we play them. How the strings vibrate on a string Instrument, which is especially evident on the double bass, and how I make a sound on the oboe by making the reed vibrate between my lips and sending air into it. They touched our instruments as we played them, feeling the vibrations they make, and then even had a go at playing them themselves, feeling the instruments vibrate against their bodies and with my instrument they can feel the reed tickle their lips.They have been a wonderful group of children to work with. And now we’re really looking forward to them coming to the concert hall where they’re going to meet Leif Ove and the whole orchestra on stage. The wonderful thing about the Feel the music project is that it’s constantly evolving and that each group of children we visited have given us new ideas and have helped Feel the Music become what it is now. The kids in Lucerne have added something really special to the project and it will be a real pleasure to play for them in the concert on Wednesday.
I’ve learnt many important lessons from meeting deaf children all over the world but I would say the most important is to keep an open heart, an open mind, just like they do. The children are so open to new experiences and almost never impose barriers on themselves. It’s been a wonderful learning experience and one I hope continues well into the future.
Emma Schied | Mahler Chamber Orchestra