The Power of Nuance

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Japan is a country of detail. From the ancient conventions of the tea ceremonies to the intricate designs in the hotel elevators, everything in the country has, as my roommate said, “so much thought put into it. Everything has meaning.” This attention to detail and meaning is something we are striving for in our music.

Nuance is the difference between a pretty concert and a beautiful concert. When we perform with meaning and detail, it inspires the audience as well as just entertaining. Our latest concert was beautiful because there was thought behind every note and step, and power behind those thoughts.

Japan’s details are what make it beautiful. During our Kanji lesson, we saw how significant each stroke of the pen was in creating a symbol. When my friends were trying on kimonos, I saw how much effort was put into every fold and clip and bow. There is so much effort put into every small detail of everything, and although the details might seem singularly irrelevant, when they are all put together, the outcome is miraculous.

In America, there is a lot of effort put into quantity. Americans eat more, spend more, waste more. There is so much stress on the big picture that details are often missed. It is so inspiring to witness a culture where a small amount of something so meticulously cared for is held so sacred. Our music is filled with detail and thought. It is beautiful to treat each song like a tea ceremony, each chord like a kimono bow. There are more similarities then we notice between the music we sing and the culture we are surrounded by.

– Allie