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Travel Connects Us


One of the exciting aspects about working in The Arts is the opportunity to work with so many talented artists from every walk of life. Not only do we get the opportunity to collaborate with interesting people who dedicate themselves to the music sphere, but also those who thrive in dance, sound technology, visual arts, and literature. Many events can be a combination of these forces and bring their expressive elements together for a captive audience.


After returning from a wonderful trip to Iceland and conducting in a special Earth Day concert in Reykjavík just a few days ago, I am even more amazed how the power of music allows us to travel around the globe. Every time we travel and perform with people from other countries, we can build amazing friendships and form connections that will endure over a lifetime. Perhaps this Icelandic journey was different because this was the first time I traveled so far North and felt a sense of being at the top rim of the world. Life feels different in Reykjavík. The sunsets glow with subtle shades of blue, the ocean feels calm, and the air is crisp in a different way than how I always experienced it in the Rocky Mountains of North America. And then there is the beauty of the Northern Lights. My visit to Iceland fell just outside the calendar to see the Aurora Borealis, which typically occurs between late August and mid-April. The conditions were perfect, however, during the early morning hours of April 24th, and—voilà!—the colors magically danced across the sky. Bright stars were visible behind the green and blue streaks of light and for that moment, I truly felt part of the cosmic universe—even though my feet were firmly planted on the ground. An awe-inspiring moment.


It's moments like these when we take a second to contemplate how these experiences even came to fruition. For me, they exist because of music. Without music, I would not have traveled to the many destinations I have performed in and visited and the different places I have lived. Without music in my life, I would not have met the many people I am so grateful to call my friends. Even during something as simple as dining at a restaurant in Reykjavík a few days ago, I met a fun and talented lady from Toronto, Canada. We were both discussing the fermented shark options on the menu and if we had the courage to try it. The locals recommended just swallowing each rubbery piece whole and not chewing any of it. I simply could not get past the smell of ammonia that wafted from the shark meat on my plate, so that day, I did not become a “true Viking tourist.” I did, however, enjoy watching my new friend get through her bites of bravery!


One of the biggest rewards of international travel is the opportunity to connect with others who have experienced a completely different upbringing and culture for most of their life, and yet, find that we have so many things in common. Whether it be fellow artists or people from different career paths, there have been numerous times when I have connected with others because of our similarities. Whether it be about topics such as family, personal interests, philosophy, pedagogy, and hopes for the future, it is always encouraging to find some common ground.


As we continue through our music careers, let us never take these moments of travel and the wonderful people we meet for granted. Think about other artists we have met, from dancers to painters, and beyond. Let’s all make the effort to stay in touch. Consider how special and intertwined our art form is. I’m sure many of you reading this can share amazing stories about your travels and the wonderful people you have met, performed with, and those you now call friend. The Arts provide us with so many opportunities to understand the human condition through different forms of expression, and our travels will continue to bring us together so we can connect and share our artistry with communities for generations to come.

 

Please share a travel story that was meaningful to you as an artist.

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1 Kommentar


Lindsey Wiehl
Lindsey Wiehl
19. Mai 2023

So glad you saw some northern lights! That is so cool.

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