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偷音乐的人

本文的小主人公是一位钢琴家。一个炎热的下午,她将一首另类摇滚乐改编成钢琴曲,因而获得了极大的满足。因为在依葫芦画瓢地照着他人所作的乐谱弹奏了这么多年后,她终于第一次有了属于自己的作品。同时,她从这件事上获得了一个启迪:每个人都是自己人生的改编者,你要善于和勇于利用前人留给你的东西,去编写属于自己的人生乐章!

 

偷音乐的人

 

 

 

By Camille Gasser

经纬 选 温纯 译

 

In the middle of a hot July afternoon, when the stifling air came with rippling waves of heat, I became a thief of some sort—a thief of music.

For the first time, I had created an original piano arrangement of one of my favorite songs. Not once had I looked for the help of premade sheet music or video tutorials on YouTube. Using only my ears and iPod, I had transformed a mix of intermingling sounds and intricate melodies into the tones of a single instrument; I had created complex harmonies and voices into something I could perform with only two hands. No help, no guide: I had done it on my own.

I’ve been a pianist since before my hands were big enough to reach an octave: with a musician and composer for a father, I was all but born on the piano bench. For many years, my musical identity was defined by the notes that others had written in centuries past: elegant lines of neatly printed notes stamped across sheet music became the script I was obligated to perform. I valued playing classical music—adored it, even—but such performances felt inherently shallow, lacking in depth and details because I had nothing of my own to contribute to the masterful compositions of Bach or Rachmaninov.

This was why, when I added the finishing touches to my piano version of a modern alt-rock song, my pride was all-consuming and glorious: this arrangement was mine. What I’d done seemed magical: an ability to take what had already existed—to “steal” a song from my favorite band—and to change it into something different and all my own. I was a thief, but I was also an artist.

In music, as in other aspects of life, I believe that true originality rarely exists. Almost everything has, in one form or another, been done before. The most passionate romance novel may very well be a slightly changed version of a play by Shakespeare, which in turn is borrowed from the playwrights of Ancient Greece: same themes, different characters, different circumstances. But, the novel is no less deserving of praise just because its uniqueness is compromised. Adaptation is not a synonym for failure.

The gift of creativity is the ability to do what I did on the piano: to find something beautiful, to analyze and twist it and lose yourself in the mystery of its composition, and then to make it new. Such an act is not copying; it is finding inspiration and having the strength and the innovation to use it as fuel for your own masterpiece. The world is nothing more than disparate collections of preexisting parts—scattered and often lost in the chaos of everyday life. I believe it is my job, as an artist, to rearrange this world into what I envision it to be.

I refuse to live as if I were trapped within the walls of a museum: looking but never touching, afraid to ruin the so-called perfection of the artifacts inside. Therefore, I will embrace my ability to be a thief, because if I don’t steal what the world has to offer, I’ll never have the tools to share with others a creation of my own.

My life is my own arrangement, and because of that, anything is possible.

七月的一个下午,天气炎热,令人窒息的空气伴随着一波波热浪不断袭来。某种程度上,我在这天下午成为了小偷——一个偷音乐的人。

生平第一次,我将自己最喜欢的一首歌改编成了原创钢琴曲。我既没有参考已经谱好的活页乐谱,也没有观摩YouTube上的视频教程。仅凭借着自己的耳朵和iPod音乐播放器,我把一组混杂的声音和复杂的旋律改编成单乐器曲子,把错综复杂的和声和(不同乐器的)声音改编成我用双手就能够弹奏的乐章。没有任何帮助,没有任何指导,我凭借一己之力独立完成了这一挑战。

当我的双手还太小,无法跨越一整个八度音之前,我就已经是一个小小钢琴家了。由于父亲是一名音乐家兼作曲家,我几乎一生下来就坐在钢琴凳上了。多年来,我的音乐认同感建立在几个世纪之前他人创造的音符之上:活页乐谱上整齐排印的音符构成优雅的线条,成了我必须弹奏的脚本。我很重视弹奏经典乐曲——甚至很喜欢——但是我觉得这类弹奏本质上有些肤浅,缺乏深度和内涵,这是因为我不能为巴赫或拉赫曼尼诺夫的精湛作品锦上添花。

这也是为什么当我完成由一首另类摇滚改编而来的原创钢琴版本的最后几个音符时,自豪和欣喜之情油然而生,充满了我的胸膛:这首改编曲是我的作品。我的成就妙不可言:将已存在的事物——从我最喜爱的乐队中“偷”一首歌——改造成另一种完全不同的、只属于我自己的作品。我是一个小偷,但同时也是一个艺术家。

我认为,在音乐领域,正如在生活的其他方面一样,几乎不存在完全原创的东西。几乎所有的事情,以这种或那种形式,都曾有人做过的。即使是最激情奔放的浪漫小说,也很有可能是莎士比亚所写的一部戏剧经过稍微修改后的一个版本罢了,而该戏剧则可能借鉴了古希腊剧作家的作品:同样的主题、不同的角色、不同的时代背景。然而,这一部小说并不会因为其独特性有所欠缺而不值得获得褒奖。改编并不意味着失败。

创新其实就是我利用钢琴进行改编的能力:寻找美的事物,分析分解它,使自己完全沉浸在创作的神秘之中,然后创造出新的作品。这种行为并非抄袭,而是寻找灵感,运用自己的能力和创新精神,充分利用已找到的灵感,使之成为创造属于自己的杰作的动力。这个世界不过是业已存在的元素无规则地零散组合在一起,分散甚至常常迷失在混乱的日复一日当中。我坚信,作为一名艺术家,将这个世界塑造成我理想中的样子是我的使命。

我拒绝这样的生活:彷佛被禁锢在博物馆的高墙之内,只能观看,不能触碰,害怕破坏展品的所谓的“完美”。因此,我很庆幸自己有成为“小偷”的能力,因为如果我不能盗取这个世界所提供的东西,那我也就无法与世界分享我的独特创作。

我的人生就是我的改编曲。因此,一切皆有可能。

(来源:英语学习杂志 编辑:丹妮)

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