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#2028931 - 02/07/13 06:53 PM The piano and homosexuality
GeorgeB Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/10
Posts: 635
(In before "why does this issue matter" or before it becomes really off topic)


Is it a coincidence some of the best pianists: from Richter, to (apparently?) Lang Lang, to Kissin, Bernstein, Liberace, Artur Pizarro etc.... Are all gay?

Do you think there is any correlation? Does it matter?

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#2028934 - 02/07/13 06:55 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
DameMyra Online   happy
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Registered: 12/21/04
Posts: 1970
Loc: South Jersey
No.And,no.
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#2028936 - 02/07/13 07:00 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: DameMyra]
CleverName Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/02/11
Posts: 122
Lang Lang's gay? Kissin's gay? Richter's gay? Didn't know that about any of them.

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#2028938 - 02/07/13 07:00 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Silverwood Pianos Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 4215
Loc: Vancouver B. C. Canada
Originally Posted By: GeorgeB
(In before "why does this issue matter" or before it becomes really off topic)
Is it a coincidence some of the best pianists: from Richter, to (apparently?) Lang Lang, to Kissin, Bernstein, Liberace, Artur Pizarro etc.... Are all gay?
Do you think there is any correlation? Does it matter?


In a civilized society we do not distinguish nor do we discriminate based on religious beliefs, sexual orientation, skin colour ethnicity, age, or gender.

Here is the ruling from the wise men up in Albany appeals;

By judging a person not on their merits but by which group they belong to, this forms the basis for discrimination”
_________________________
Dan Silverwood
www.silverwoodpianos.com
http://silverwoodpianos.blogspot.com/
http://www.facebook.com/SilverwoodPianosDotCom
"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."

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#2028942 - 02/07/13 07:05 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
GeorgeB Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/10
Posts: 635
And what's wrong with trying to find out more about if a certain trait is common amongst people who play the piano even if it is slightly taboo?

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#2028948 - 02/07/13 07:11 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Kreisler Offline



Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13799
Loc: Iowa City, IA
No, I just think the the arts are a safer community for being public about it, and so homosexuals who end up in the arts are more likely to have that fact known about them, and homosexuals who have a choice of careers might choose the arts over professions with less understanding communities.
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

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#2028949 - 02/07/13 07:14 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Silverwood Pianos Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 4215
Loc: Vancouver B. C. Canada


Maybe they are all left handed. Maybe they all dye their hair.

Maybe they all eat hamburgers. Maybe they all wear Gucci jewellery.

Why do you care?

Find something important to concern yourself with in life because this isn’t it.
_________________________
Dan Silverwood
www.silverwoodpianos.com
http://silverwoodpianos.blogspot.com/
http://www.facebook.com/SilverwoodPianosDotCom
"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."

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#2028955 - 02/07/13 07:20 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
beet31425 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/12/09
Posts: 3812
Loc: Bay Area, CA
I do think there is a legitimate question buried in here: is there a correlation between homosexuality and various forms of artistic sensibility, or is this just a media-induced perception? But I don't think it has anything to do with the piano per se, and this isn't a great topic for this forum.

(By the way, my understanding is that Richter's homosexuality is generally acknowledged, while Lang Lang and Kissin are idle speculation by the OP.)


-Jason
_________________________
Schubert: Bb Impromptu D.935/3; Mozart: D minor concerto; Chopin: first Ballade

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#2028957 - 02/07/13 07:22 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Silverwood Pianos Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 4215
Loc: Vancouver B. C. Canada

No the real question is this;

One more time. Why does it matter what they are or are not?
_________________________
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www.silverwoodpianos.com
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"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."

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#2028958 - 02/07/13 07:23 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
FSO Offline
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Registered: 04/03/12
Posts: 854
Loc: UK, Brighton
It's actually important to consider; we don't know what quite a lot of the brain does so...if we can draw correlations we can steadily build a more complete picture of what makes certain talents appear...um...it doesn't matter *socially*, but scientifically it would be remiss to ignore...no?
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#2028961 - 02/07/13 07:26 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
JoelW Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4828
Loc: USA
LOL

No...

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#2028962 - 02/07/13 07:30 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Silverwood Pianos Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 4215
Loc: Vancouver B. C. Canada

Originally Posted By: FSO
we don't know what quite a lot of the brain does so...


Well I can tell you what a few of the brains around here are not doing at the moment; being used constructively.

These performers are what they are. Their motivations for being a certain way are none of our business.

You know most of life is just simply about understanding.
_________________________
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"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."

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#2028972 - 02/07/13 07:55 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
"In a civilized society we do not distinguish nor do we discriminate based on religious beliefs, sexual orientation, skin colour ethnicity, age, or gender."

But we do. We shouldn't, but we do. And it's not noble to act as if it doesn't happen as if that were the same as being politically correct. It is still the case that there are very few internationally renowned concert pianists who are black, for example. Whilst no decent person would judge a concert pianist on such a thing, its still an interesting conversation to have about the various social reasons as to why that might be the case.

I can understand why straight people who are either trying too hard to be politically correct or find it an uncomfortable subject would argue that such a conversation about gay pianists is uninteresting and not worth having. I, however, do find it interesting, to think about the various reasons for why there might be a higher percentage than normal of pianists who are gay, if indeed this is the case at all. Being at music college, this does seem to be the case, although I think it is more the case with singers. In my year, 9 out of the 12 tenors are gay. The other years are similar, and friends of mine in other colleges in the country have said that the numbers are similar where they are as well.
Estimates for how much of the general population are gay in some degree vary from 2% to 10% depending on which study you consult. Clearly there is some kind of disparity here. Does nobody think it might be even slightly interesting to pontificate on why this might be?

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#2028977 - 02/07/13 08:06 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Silverwood Pianos Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 4215
Loc: Vancouver B. C. Canada

I have been in the music industry forty years. Lots of people in all walks of life are gay, lesbian, transgendered.

One experience at a particular college does not make a study sample worthy of consideration.

Would the thread be any better if we were discussing the disproportionate amount of Jewish people in finance?

How about all the black garbage collectors?

How about all of the left handed redheads of the world?

Do not let me prevent anyone from the joys of stereotyping. Carry on
_________________________
Dan Silverwood
www.silverwoodpianos.com
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"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."

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#2028981 - 02/07/13 08:12 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Michael_99 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/28/12
Posts: 935
Loc: Canada Alberta
Is it a coincidence some of the best pianists: from Richter, to (apparently?) Lang Lang, to Kissin, Bernstein, Liberace, Artur Pizarro etc.... Are all gay?

Well, some of the best pianist are straight and some of the best pianists are gay so that is normal.

You don't have to be gay or straight to play the piano.

To be able to play the piano you have to sit on a piano bench for 20 years practicing the piano.

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#2028982 - 02/07/13 08:14 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
"Lots of people in all walks of life are gay, lesbian, transgendered."

Don't patronise me. You can't talk about inadequate study samples on one hand and on the other hand dismiss the difference between 5% and 75% as being one and the same under the generic label of 'lots of people'. You also confused 'one experience at one college' with 'many experiences at many colleges', possibly because it was relayed to you by a single person, but never mind.

If, to use one of your examples, say 75% of redheaded people were left handed, this WOULD be an extremely interesting thing, as it would suggest some kind of biological correlation, and merely acknowledging this fact is not to suggest that anyone should be judged in any way based on it. More to the point, if redheaded people being lefthanded was an already existing stereotype in peoples minds, this would make it doubly interesting. This has got nothing to do with stereotypING. This is to do with talking ABOUT stereotypes. How they arise, and whether or not there is any truth in them. This is not the same as being taken in by them.


Edited by debrucey (02/07/13 08:18 PM)

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#2028985 - 02/07/13 08:19 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Michael_99 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/28/12
Posts: 935
Loc: Canada Alberta
Well, what is complex, is that in some cultures it is a no no for guys to make dresses or sew or being a mechanic is no no for women so culturally fewer people based on gender maybe less inclinied to try different things based on their cultural background.

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#2028990 - 02/07/13 08:27 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Silverwood Pianos]
pianoloverus Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19460
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: Silverwood Pianos

I have been in the music industry forty years. Lots of people in all walks of life are gay, lesbian, transgendered.

One experience at a particular college does not make a study sample worthy of consideration.

Would the thread be any better if we were discussing the disproportionate amount of Jewish people in finance?

How about all the black garbage collectors?

How about all of the left handed redheads of the world?

Do not let me prevent anyone from the joys of stereotyping. Carry on
But it's not stereotyping. "Stereotyping" usually has some negative connotation but that's not apparent in this thread.

For example, an incredibly high percentage of the great pianists were Jewish but few of the great composers were Jewish. Those are interesting facts I think. It raises questions about why one field and not the other?


Edited by pianoloverus (02/07/13 08:43 PM)

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#2028999 - 02/07/13 08:51 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: pianoloverus]
Keith D Kerman Offline
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Registered: 03/12/03
Posts: 3334
Loc: Gaithersburg, MD (Washington D...
Anyone who does not have children has lots more time to practice. Straight, Gay, whatever. Less children = more practice = play piano better.
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#2029000 - 02/07/13 08:56 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: debrucey]
ando Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/10
Posts: 3612
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
Originally Posted By: debrucey
Does nobody think it might be even slightly interesting to pontificate on why this might be?


I don't think we necessarily want to "pontificate" on such a matter! Ponder, sure.

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#2029003 - 02/07/13 09:12 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: ando]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
Originally Posted By: ando
Originally Posted By: debrucey
Does nobody think it might be even slightly interesting to pontificate on why this might be?


I don't think we necessarily want to "pontificate" on such a matter! Ponder, sure.


LMAO! Whoops :P. In my defence, it's 2am here lol

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#2029006 - 02/07/13 09:20 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: debrucey]
malkin Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/18/09
Posts: 2611
Loc: *sigh* Salt Lake City
Originally Posted By: debrucey
Originally Posted By: ando
Originally Posted By: debrucey
Does nobody think it might be even slightly interesting to pontificate on why this might be?


I don't think we necessarily want to "pontificate" on such a matter! Ponder, sure.


LMAO! Whoops :P. In my defence, it's 2am here lol


Someone might at any moment show up and "talk in a dogmatic and pompous manner" on the subject.
_________________________
A good student is one who makes the teacher feel like a good teacher.

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#2029007 - 02/07/13 09:22 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: ando]
argerichfan Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/15/06
Posts: 8903
Loc: Pacific Northwest, US.
Originally Posted By: ando
Originally Posted By: debrucey
Does nobody think it might be even slightly interesting to pontificate on why this might be?


I don't think we necessarily want to "pontificate" on such a matter! Ponder, sure.

I did think 'pontificate' an interesting choice of word. Yet I certainly 'ponder' why it seems so many organists are gay. I went to school with a bunch of them, and I have known -and know of- several very high profile organists in the UK.

In the US it seems even more prevalent, not mentioning some of the more obvious examples which come to mind. (Some years ago I used to post on an organ forum -primarily US-based- and that was quite interesting.)
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#2029012 - 02/07/13 09:38 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Vasilievich Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/04/10
Posts: 90
Originally Posted By: GeorgeB


Do you think there is any correlation? Does it matter?


Many, many famous musicians and artists in general have had unusual sexual lives—gay, straight, asexual, bisexual or beastial. Whether or not there is an actual correlation is another question, but I think there are probably just as many people that would fall into those labels in any field. We just know more about the people in fields like art, music and acting because more people become famous in these professions, as opposed to a homosexual piano tuner. Does it matter? No, but it is invariably a part of who they are and thus probably indirectly influences the practice of their art in some way.

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#2029014 - 02/07/13 09:41 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
CraigG Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/23/09
Posts: 162
Loc: Canada
Here are a few basic scientific tenets to consider when discussing a topic such as this:

1. Correlation does not imply causation. Sure, more artistic people may be homosexual (or maybe not, I don't know), but that does not imply that being homosexual causes artistic tendencies and it does not imply that an artistic talent may lead to homosexuality. More often than not there is a third, unseen variable which is influencing both observed traits.

2. Valid statements cannot be made based on personal observations (known as the Availability Heuristic). Just because one thinks of something or notices something does not imply any level of significance.

3. The plural of anecdote is not evidence. To say "my friends all agree" or "other people see this as well" are not valid arguments.

Personally, I think Kreisler's statement is likely very true. However, without any form of statistical survey or empirical data to compare against the general population, nobody can say for sure whether the incidence of homosexuality is in fact higher in the arts.
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#2029025 - 02/07/13 09:56 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Keith D Kerman]
Michael_99 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/28/12
Posts: 935
Loc: Canada Alberta
I love the post. I know 5 gay men who all have pianos and none of them play. They are out everynight socializing way too busy to sit on a piano bench to practice or play. Again, it is commitment - not kids or a wife!

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#2029029 - 02/07/13 10:14 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Silverwood Pianos]
carey Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/13/05
Posts: 6372
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona
Originally Posted By: Silverwood Pianos

These performers are what they are. Their motivations for being a certain way are none of our business.


Their "motivations" for being gay? Seriously ????

But I agree - it is none of our business.
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#2029034 - 02/07/13 10:39 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
FSO Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/03/12
Posts: 854
Loc: UK, Brighton
"It is none of our business" ... *cough* then what is? I must admit, I find it very strange how strong the anti-discrimination impulse is within the current climate, if you will. I mean, um, discrimination isn't a bad thing; it's our way of determining one from another. I mean, people may consider it none of their business as to the sexuality of another, but will *discriminate* against paedophiles; not allowing them to work in schools for instance. But that just makes sense, the masses cry...so why not disclose sexuality, gender, race et al.? If your friend was the only black person in the room and you were trying to direct another to engage them in conversation, why not say "oh, go talk to Peter over there, the black chap" rather than "oh, go talk to Peter over there, the one stood not quite North facing"? Discrimination makes sense; it is, I believe, the fear and inability of the public to accept discrimination that allows unduly *negative* discrimination to continue. Oh, um...it's also quite amusing to me how it's considered acceptable to be discriminatory so long as you are "one of them"...I appreciate that people are just trying to be fair to all, but discrimination isn't the enemy. I mean...explain how someone paralysed from the waist below can't run without being discriminatory towards the notion that there exist disabled people and I'll grant you my salutations. Treating people *equally* doesn't mean treating them the *same* and it seems folly to me that our terms of address shouldn't follow the same approach. Sorry, um, I don't mean to antagonise anyone but...if we live in fear of discrimination or discriminating...well, fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate... laugh
Xxx
Edit: Thank you, Carey, for swooping in on the "motivations" point before I did; I'm glad someone else picked up on that laugh


Edited by FSO (02/07/13 10:41 PM)
Edit Reason: Edit stated
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#2029045 - 02/07/13 10:55 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Plowboy Online   content
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Registered: 06/26/08
Posts: 2336
Loc: SoCal
"There are only three kinds of pianists: Jewish pianists, homosexual pianists, and bad pianists."
-- Horowitz
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Gary

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#2029052 - 02/07/13 11:08 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Horowitzian Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/18/08
Posts: 8453
I fall into the latter category. laugh


If I recall correctly, there is some debate as to what Volodya actually meant when he said that.
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#2029101 - 02/08/13 01:27 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Horowitzian]
outo Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/02/12
Posts: 722
Loc: Finland
To put this into context: Would you expect career military men being homosexual? Probably not, yet studies show quite a few of them are, just not publicly. I would vote for correlation but would not expect to find causality. In some professions it's much easier to be public about your sexual orientation. Being homosexual might affect a person's career choice at some point.

Obviously no proper study exists on whether homosexuality is a benefit for a skill, and doubt it would be even possible to show such a connection.

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#2029123 - 02/08/13 03:05 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Kreisler]
theJourney Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 3946
Loc: Banned
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
No, I just think the the arts are a safer community for being public about it, and so homosexuals who end up in the arts are more likely to have that fact known about them, and homosexuals who have a choice of careers might choose the arts over professions with less understanding communities.


Yes, the hairdresser/flower arranger answer. It sounds correct, reasonable and also completely politically correct.

One might also add in addition to the above observation that because homosexuals, even today, are presented with a personally urgent intellectual and emotional conundrum from a wee age in the realization that they are different to the suggestions made by the majority of default and ubiquitous cultural messaging (and that they are then forced to constantly make conscious decisions about what they do or do not do or say about themselves as opposed to just living spontaneously in freedom) that they become during the critical years of brain development sensitive to all kinds of differences and aware of the profound revelation in life that there are no absolutes and that everything is relative.

Heightened sensitivity and the artistic freedom that such precocious, personality-forming understanding brings tends to be helpful to be successful as a pianist.

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#2029129 - 02/08/13 03:19 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Silverwood Pianos]
theJourney Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 3946
Loc: Banned
Originally Posted By: Silverwood Pianos

You know most of life is just simply about understanding.


Understanding does not come from creating taboos nor through exercising duress towards censure nor self-censure.

You are making the case that this topic should be declared VERBOTEN and that those daring to discuss it are guilty of some kind of implicit discrimination. However, I have only seen one single offensive comment on this thread:

Originally Posted By: Silverwood Pianos
These performers are what they are. Their motivations for being a certain way are none of our business.


This is the kind of discriminatory mis-understanding that needs to be nipped in the bud, not an open and honest discussion of the OP's open question.

Originally Posted By: FSO
It's actually important to consider; we don't know what quite a lot of the brain does so...if we can draw correlations we can steadily build a more complete picture of what makes certain talents appear...um...it doesn't matter *socially*, but scientifically it would be remiss to ignore...no?


Yes.

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#2029130 - 02/08/13 03:21 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: FSO]
theJourney Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 3946
Loc: Banned
Originally Posted By: FSO
"It is none of our business" ... *cough* then what is? I must admit, I find it very strange how strong the anti-discrimination impulse is within the current climate, if you will. I mean, um, discrimination isn't a bad thing; it's our way of determining one from another. I mean, people may consider it none of their business as to the sexuality of another, but will *discriminate* against paedophiles; not allowing them to work in schools for instance. But that just makes sense, the masses cry...so why not disclose sexuality, gender, race et al.? If your friend was the only black person in the room and you were trying to direct another to engage them in conversation, why not say "oh, go talk to Peter over there, the black chap" rather than "oh, go talk to Peter over there, the one stood not quite North facing"? Discrimination makes sense; it is, I believe, the fear and inability of the public to accept discrimination that allows unduly *negative* discrimination to continue. Oh, um...it's also quite amusing to me how it's considered acceptable to be discriminatory so long as you are "one of them"...I appreciate that people are just trying to be fair to all, but discrimination isn't the enemy. I mean...explain how someone paralysed from the waist below can't run without being discriminatory towards the notion that there exist disabled people and I'll grant you my salutations. Treating people *equally* doesn't mean treating them the *same* and it seems folly to me that our terms of address shouldn't follow the same approach. Sorry, um, I don't mean to antagonise anyone but...if we live in fear of discrimination or discriminating...well, fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate... laugh
Xxx
Edit: Thank you, Carey, for swooping in on the "motivations" point before I did; I'm glad someone else picked up on that laugh


+1

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#2029133 - 02/08/13 03:33 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Plowboy]
izaldu Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/18/08
Posts: 1250
Loc:
Originally Posted By: Plowboy
"There are only three kinds of pianists: Jewish pianists, homosexual pianists, and bad pianists."
-- Horowitz


"Its not true that all ballet dancers are homosexual, i have met at least four in my lifetime that were not."

Rudolf Nureyev (apparently)

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#2029135 - 02/08/13 03:35 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Opus_Maximus Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/27/04
Posts: 1494
I think this Stephen Hough blog "Gay pianists, can you tell?" may be of interest..

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/culture/stephenhough/100006381/gay-pianists-can-you-tell/

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#2029145 - 02/08/13 04:11 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: theJourney]
Derulux Offline
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Registered: 06/06/05
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Originally Posted By: theJourney
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
No, I just think the the arts are a safer community for being public about it, and so homosexuals who end up in the arts are more likely to have that fact known about them, and homosexuals who have a choice of careers might choose the arts over professions with less understanding communities.


Yes, the hairdresser/flower arranger answer. It sounds correct, reasonable and also completely politically correct.

One might also add in addition to the above observation that because homosexuals, even today, are presented with a personally urgent intellectual and emotional conundrum from a wee age in the realization that they are different to the suggestions made by the majority of default and ubiquitous cultural messaging (and that they are then forced to constantly make conscious decisions about what they do or do not do or say about themselves as opposed to just living spontaneously in freedom) that they become during the critical years of brain development sensitive to all kinds of differences and aware of the profound revelation in life that there are no absolutes and that everything is relative.

Heightened sensitivity and the artistic freedom that such precocious, personality-forming understanding brings tends to be helpful to be successful as a pianist.

I think this is incredibly highbrow, uncommonly intelligent, and yet, inherently flawed. But let me be clear on what I think is flawed: your statement presupposes that only the homosexual community is faced with this kind of adversity, and hence, only the homosexual community can reach that super-sensitive place you've described in which such artistic genius, apparently, revels. This, I cannot say I agree with.

Our global society has come a long way towards accepting sexual orientation, but admittingly, still has a long way to go. So, I am not going to argue that your observations are flawed. I think there is a lot of truth in what you say. However, I think the conclusion you draw is falsely based on some unexamined/unknown bias.

Firstly, statistics doesn't agree with you. Using a 2012 Gallup Poll, 3.4% of the US population identifies as LGBT. If we consider an even cross-section of applicants for artistic endeavors, that would mean, for every 97 heterosexual students, there are 3 who are not. So, purely statistically speaking, it is far more likely for a gifted artist to come from the larger population than the smaller.

Of course, we could say that, perhaps, only 5% of heterosexuals go into artistic endeavors. Let's also say 100% of LGBT go into the arts, just so we can create a bias towards LGBT. That means for every 4.85 hetero artists, there are 3.4 LGBT. A much better ratio. This means, for every 59 hetero, there are 41 LGBT (out of 100). While the numbers are much closer, your average Las Vegas casino makes billions on ratios much smaller than this. So, it is still far more likely that a gifted artist will come from the hetero community than the LGBT community.


Secondly, we must examine your claim of emotional sensitivity as driven by adversity. I think there are many types of adversity that make one open to the sort of sensitivity that creates talented artists. Typically, this sensitivity is described as necessarily viewing yourself as "outside" society. This separation allows the artist to "look in" at society and see something they would like to describe/use/exploit in their art. This has been described of every artistic endeavor. The metaphor of Plato's Cave would be accurate to use here. I am sure you know it, so I won't bore you by repeating its applicability here.

To continue, this adversity can be drawn from many areas. You may lose one or both parents, be orphaned from the start, not fit in in school, get picked on, bullied, made fun of, have no luck in the dating world, fail at your dreams.. any number of things can provide that kind of sensitivity that creates an "outside" perspective. I don't think it is even remotely accurate to suggest that the homosexual community has a corner on the market.

As such, we must go back to the statistical analysis and derive the conclusion that it is far more likely a talented artist would come from the hetero community than the LGBT.

Now, why the assumption about LGBT? Well, this is much more speculative, but perhaps because such powerful and well-known people in the community are openly expressive of their orientation, we tend to get the sense that it applies to the artistic community as a whole, even if it does not. I also think that Kreisler's comment applies here, that LGBT individuals tend to be more outspoken and expressive of their beliefs in a community, like the arts, where it is more accepted and where their job doesn't hinder on their sexual orientation.

But none of that supports the argument that LGBT are somehow "inherently" better artists. I think such a concept shortchanges not only heterosexuals who are talented artists, but also every LGBT who worked their tails off to get where they are within the arts. You get to the top of the arts by busting your @$$ until you make it, not by your sexual preference.

Regarding Horowitz's original quote, I think it's flat-out wrong. It's racist and sexist. I'll provide two historical examples: Liszt and Mozart. They weren't Jewish, Russian, or gay, and to this day, they would seem to stand on the pinnacle of pianistic abilities.
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#2029157 - 02/08/13 05:07 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Derulux]
theJourney Offline
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Originally Posted By: Derulux
I think this is incredibly highbrow, uncommonly intelligent, and yet, inherently flawed. But let me be clear on what I think is flawed: your statement presupposes that only the homosexual community is faced with this kind of adversity, and hence, only the homosexual community can reach that super-sensitive place you've described in which such artistic genius, apparently, revels. This, I cannot say I agree with.


No. That is a mistake in logic. My statement makes no such presupposition.

It is also not about "adversity" per se, but about the realization of children during their identity-forming, personality-molding, brain-developing years, without having asked for it or even wanting it, that they are not only different but, particularly in the case of homosexuality, perhaps even considered to be illicitly contrary to the very fabric of one or more or most cultural assumptions in the environment in which they are growing up.

The fact that many/most homosexuals raised in those countries celebrating the Western Music tradition are faced with this situation does not in any way imply that no others might also be faced with a kind of clash or misfit that forces them to be more sensitive, more aware, more consciously engaged by force rather than unconsciously relaxing in their unquestioned and unexamined perfect fit and thus potentially more artistically inclined and/or attracted to self-expression on the piano.

I have limited my statement to homosexuals, not LBT or even BLT. One could also discuss Korean foster children growing up on Iowa farms, unwanted black orphans from the USA being lovingly raised by their two gay Dutch daddies in Amsterdam, confirmed atheists being raised by Southern Baptists, awkward, effeminate straight boys being raised by rabid sports fans, etc. etc. However, the statistical problems you mention become even thornier.

There is another aspect that has not been discussed, which is this: in many, many places within the popular culture in which many boys -- straight and gay -- grow up in still today (or even more so today) it takes a lot of self-confidence, independence of thought or if you wish, " balls ", to even admit that you like classical music and the piano, let alone to actually ask for and receive and persevere through ten years of expensive lessons. Taking piano lessons in (junior) high school can cost you your friends, your quarterback position, your social status, your sexual attractiveness, your shot at homecoming king, etc. etc. If you already don't have one or more or any of those things, then the cost of indulging yourself with your passion for the piano is much lower. Outsiders have less to lose.

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#2029158 - 02/08/13 05:12 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Derulux]
theJourney Offline
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Originally Posted By: Derulux
Regarding Horowitz's original quote, I think it's flat-out wrong. It's racist and sexist. I'll provide two historical examples: Liszt and Mozart. They weren't Jewish, Russian, or gay, and to this day, they would seem to stand on the pinnacle of pianistic abilities.


This goes without saying.

Lesson learned: Never take apocryphal quotes of campy, ironical, self-deprecating, confontational attempts at humor as a statement of fact.

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#2029175 - 02/08/13 06:59 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: theJourney]
wr Offline
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Originally Posted By: theJourney
Originally Posted By: Derulux
I think this is incredibly highbrow, uncommonly intelligent, and yet, inherently flawed. But let me be clear on what I think is flawed: your statement presupposes that only the homosexual community is faced with this kind of adversity, and hence, only the homosexual community can reach that super-sensitive place you've described in which such artistic genius, apparently, revels. This, I cannot say I agree with.


No. That is a mistake in logic. My statement makes no such presupposition.

It is also not about "adversity" per se, but about the realization of children during their identity-forming, personality-molding, brain-developing years, without having asked for it or even wanting it, that they are not only different but, particularly in the case of homosexuality, perhaps even considered to be illicitly contrary to the very fabric of one or more or most cultural assumptions in the environment in which they are growing up.

The fact that many/most homosexuals raised in those countries celebrating the Western Music tradition are faced with this situation does not in any way imply that no others might also be faced with a kind of clash or misfit that forces them to be more sensitive, more aware, more consciously engaged by force rather than unconsciously relaxing in their unquestioned and unexamined perfect fit and thus potentially more artistically inclined and/or attracted to self-expression on the piano.

I have limited my statement to homosexuals, not LBT or even BLT. One could also discuss Korean foster children growing up on Iowa farms, unwanted black orphans from the USA being lovingly raised by their two gay Dutch daddies in Amsterdam, confirmed atheists being raised by Southern Baptists, awkward, effeminate straight boys being raised by rabid sports fans, etc. etc. However, the statistical problems you mention become even thornier.

There is another aspect that has not been discussed, which is this: in many, many places within the popular culture in which many boys -- straight and gay -- grow up in still today (or even more so today) it takes a lot of self-confidence, independence of thought or if you wish, " balls ", to even admit that you like classical music and the piano, let alone to actually ask for and receive and persevere through ten years of expensive lessons. Taking piano lessons in (junior) high school can cost you your friends, your quarterback position, your social status, your sexual attractiveness, your shot at homecoming king, etc. etc. If you already don't have one or more or any of those things, then the cost of indulging yourself with your passion for the piano is much lower. Outsiders have less to lose.


It is worth pointing out, I think, that being "gifted" in anything also tends to make children feel different in some degree, regardless of their sexuality. There may be some kind of synergistic effect that happens with kids who are gifted and who also happen not to be heterosexual. It's like they get a double-whammy of identity issues on their plate to figure out, and often with not a lot of outside help. My sense is that being in that situation could force a kid into using their imagination in ways that also turn out to be artistically useful.

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#2029179 - 02/08/13 07:14 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Ian_G Offline
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That's a good point, wr. Walking down the street singing, "Ich hatte viel Bekümmernis" will engender serious social adversity. If the incredulous hearers-by would learn that the offender is gay, well, I think that amounts in their minds to having encountered a gay alien.

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#2029181 - 02/08/13 07:22 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Derulux]
pianoloverus Online   content
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Originally Posted By: Derulux

Regarding Horowitz's original quote, I think it's flat-out wrong. It's racist and sexist. I'll provide two historical examples: Liszt and Mozart. They weren't Jewish, Russian, or gay, and to this day, they would seem to stand on the pinnacle of pianistic abilities.
Horowitz's statement was meant as a joke. It's just his way of saying a very significant percentage of good pianists are Jewish or gay. I think it's a given he didn't mean it in an absolute sense. His pianistic idol was Rachmaninov, and I'm sure he thought Liszt was very great.

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#2029218 - 02/08/13 09:13 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Derulux]
theJourney Offline
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Originally Posted By: Derulux
But none of that supports the argument that LGBT are somehow "inherently" better artists.

I also would not make this kind of generalization.
Originally Posted By: Derulux

I think such a concept shortchanges not only heterosexuals who are talented artists, but also every LGBT who worked their tails off to get where they are within the arts. You get to the top of the arts by busting your @$$ until you make it, not by your sexual preference.




However, you make it sound as if " getting to the top " of the arts is like some kind of Mad Men career race. Especially given the materialistic connotations of a busted posterior written with two dollar signs. Arbeit ist zuss & success means material success, etc.

I would argue that there is often (usually? always?) something else or something more going on in becoming a top artist (whether recognized as such or not), such as: parents that are willing to sacrifice their own life for the potential artistic life of their child (Lang Lang anyone?), timing (being in the right place at the right time doing the right things), network/contacts, dumb luck, the right conservatory/teachers/mentors, the right opportunities, choosing a genre/period/composer that is in demand rather than your first love, etc.

Next of course are ephemeral things such as "aptitude", "talent", "character", "poise/charisma", "ability to connect", etc.

I had a Russian piano teacher who said there was a saying in Russian to the effect of "Troubles make your Soul and your playing is always a mirror into your Soul." She believed that truly great artists were made in the character crucible of "nobody knows the trouble I've seen...".

When you hear someone like Mikhail Pletnev play something as dead simple as Thaichowsky's Autumn, you can palpably hear and feel that his inner life has not just been a bed of roses.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xcmIKqyQYWA


Edited by theJourney (02/08/13 09:15 AM)

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#2029271 - 02/08/13 11:55 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Silverwood Pianos]
CleverName Offline
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Originally Posted By: Silverwood Pianos

I have been in the music industry forty years. Lots of people in all walks of life are gay, lesbian, transgendered.

One experience at a particular college does not make a study sample worthy of consideration.

Would the thread be any better if we were discussing the disproportionate amount of Jewish people in finance?

How about all the black garbage collectors?

How about all of the left handed redheads of the world?

Do not let me prevent anyone from the joys of stereotyping. Carry on

Yes, talking about all of those things is important, and that's why we do it. We talk about why engineering and science schools are so heavily dominated by men, very few women appear. We acknowledge the achievement gap between predominantly black and predominantly white schools. Good lord, we have entire government funded organizations to study and discuss these matters. Your apparent taking offense at someone pointing out (simply pointing out!) that there seems to be a higher percentage of homosexuals in the arts (or, as Kreisler suggested, a higher percentage of openly homosexual individuals in the arts) than other industries is, frankly, just silly.

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#2029316 - 02/08/13 01:33 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
wower Offline
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Originally Posted By: GeorgeB
Do you think there is any correlation? Does it matter?


Normally I shy away from replying to such controversial topics but here I feel my position is so rare only because it is not said enough: I do not believe there is any earthly connection between the two. There is no link. No causality. I have absolutely no idea how one's orientation would ever affect one's skill at the keyboard. It's a complete non-issue for me. The subject bordering on a waste of time. And as such I will now return to enjoying music and practicing piano.
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#2029328 - 02/08/13 01:55 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: CleverName]
carey Offline
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Originally Posted By: CleverName

Your apparent taking offense at someone pointing out (simply pointing out!) that there seems to be a higher percentage of homosexuals in the arts (or, as Kreisler suggested, a higher percentage of openly homosexual individuals in the arts) than other industries is, frankly, just silly.


Obviously, for some folks, perception is reality. smile

ACTUALLY the original post simply referred to "some of the best pianists" - (i.e., Is it a coincidence some of the best pianists: from Richter, to (apparently?) Lang Lang, to Kissin, Bernstein, Liberace, Artur Pizarro etc.... Are all gay? Do you think there is any correlation? Does it matter?)

Somehow this thread evolved from discussing "Some of the best pianists" to "individuals in the arts in general."

As for the OP's original question:

"Do you think there is any correlation" (between playing the piano well and being gay???) NO

"Does it matter/" NO (why should it ?)



Edited by carey (02/08/13 01:57 PM)
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#2029343 - 02/08/13 02:27 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
CHAS Offline
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Horowitz, who denied being homosexual,[24] once joked, "There are three kinds of pianists: Jewish pianists, homosexual pianists, and bad pianists."

Score = two out of three.

When you are always the last one picked to be on a team, staying home with the piano has more appeal.
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#2029347 - 02/08/13 02:49 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
RonaldSteinway Offline
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This is my thought why many good pianists are gay.

In order to play piano well, there are many qualities needed:

1. Sensitivity.
2. Physical agility and endurance (fingers movement, endurance to practice for a long time).
3. Strong thinking ability (like to figure out complex stuff).
4. Persistence and focus in reaching the goal
5. Meticulous and detail oriented .

Gay men have more chance to possess those required qualities, that is why many of them are more equipped to be good pianists. Females or Hetero men usually lack of one or more of the above components.

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#2029353 - 02/08/13 02:59 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: RonaldSteinway]
carey Offline
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Originally Posted By: RonaldSteinway

Gay men have more chance to possess those required qualities, that is why many of them are more equipped to be good pianists.


wow And why, pray tell, is that exactly????

On second thought........never mind.
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#2029364 - 02/08/13 03:28 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
FSO Offline
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No no, Carey, let RonaldSteinway explain, I assume, himself; which of those qualities do heterosexuals miss out on? And females...? Um...I'm not judging your assertions but...it strikes me that you're insinuating that gay men have the highest chance of being perfect human beings...you're making some pretty bold claims here laugh
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#2029374 - 02/08/13 03:47 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: FSO]
carey Offline
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Originally Posted By: FSO
No no, Carey, let RonaldSteinway explain, I assume, himself; which of those qualities do heterosexuals miss out on? And females...? Um...I'm not judging your assertions but...it strikes me that you're insinuating that gay men have the highest chance of being perfect human beings...you're making some pretty bold claims here laugh


ha I didn't even want to acknowledge the "female" comment. Would any of our female PW members like to chime in here???? grin
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#2029387 - 02/08/13 04:17 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: carey]
Old Man Offline
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Originally Posted By: carey
Originally Posted By: FSO
No no, Carey, let RonaldSteinway explain, I assume, himself; which of those qualities do heterosexuals miss out on? And females...? Um...I'm not judging your assertions but...it strikes me that you're insinuating that gay men have the highest chance of being perfect human beings...you're making some pretty bold claims here laugh


ha I didn't even want to acknowledge the "female" comment. Would any of our female PW members like to chime in here???? grin


I think one of them just did. She even addressed you by name. grin


Edited by Old Man (02/08/13 05:07 PM)

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#2029391 - 02/08/13 04:27 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: CHAS]
Old Man Offline
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Originally Posted By: CHAS
Horowitz, who denied being homosexual,[24] once joked, "There are three kinds of pianists: Jewish pianists, homosexual pianists, and bad pianists."

Score = two out of three.

When you are always the last one picked to be on a team, staying home with the piano has more appeal.

Yes, Rubinstein said that it was common knowledge among pianists that Horowitz was homosexual, but no one gave it a second thought.

Originally Posted By: debrucey
This has got nothing to do with stereotypING. This is to do with talking ABOUT stereotypes. How they arise, and whether or not there is any truth in them. This is not the same as being taken in by them.

Absolutely. Stereotypes are exploded and neutralized by discussing them, not by closing our eyes to them. And it's important to remember that stereotypes always contain a kernel of truth, no matter how distorted that truth may become over time.

A good example, (though unrelated to the topic at hand), is the old stereotype that blacks just love chicken and watermelon, as though this were some sort of genetic trait. Until fairly recently, the economic history of black Americans has required them to do a lot with very little, so finding inexpensive sources of protein (chicken), vegetables (greens of various types), and fruit (watermelon) would have been of paramount importance to them, as it would be to any poor family. These foods pack a lot of nutritional wallop, for relatively little money. This is called rational economic behavior, stretching a dollar, etc., and is not due to some innate craving for particular foods. Ironically, poor whites ate pretty much these same foods, yet managed to escape the stereotype. And that's because the essential truth within it was twisted to suit the malicious purposes of bigoted whites, who used it as one more opportunity to ridicule the life style of their fellow Americans who happened to be black.

IMO discussing stereotypes is a good thing. It allows us to break them down and separate the "truth part" from the "lie part". In the process, we can, perhaps, neutralize them entirely. But silence, I'm afraid, is simply acquiescence and only perpetuates the myth, or the "lie part".

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#2029416 - 02/08/13 05:18 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
offnote Offline
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***


Edited by Kreisler (02/08/13 08:27 PM)
Edit Reason: offensive comment deleted

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#2029466 - 02/08/13 07:21 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: offnote]
carey Offline
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***


Edited by Kreisler (02/08/13 08:27 PM)
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#2029468 - 02/08/13 07:23 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Old Man]
carey Offline
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Originally Posted By: Old Man
Originally Posted By: carey
Originally Posted By: FSO
No no, Carey, let RonaldSteinway explain, I assume, himself; which of those qualities do heterosexuals miss out on? And females...? Um...I'm not judging your assertions but...it strikes me that you're insinuating that gay men have the highest chance of being perfect human beings...you're making some pretty bold claims here laugh

ha I didn't even want to acknowledge the "female" comment. Would any of our female PW members like to chime in here???? grin

I think one of them just did. She even addressed you by name. grin

You got me on that one !! smile
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#2029484 - 02/08/13 07:54 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: carey]
debrucey Offline
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***


Edited by Kreisler (02/08/13 08:27 PM)

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#2029495 - 02/08/13 08:17 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
JoelW Offline
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Registered: 05/25/12
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This thread is idiotic.

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#2029496 - 02/08/13 08:20 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: JoelW]
GeorgeB Offline
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Registered: 06/06/10
Posts: 635
Originally Posted By: JoelW
This thread is idiotic.

Those words coming from you really made me laugh.

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#2029497 - 02/08/13 08:22 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Old Man]
CleverName Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/02/11
Posts: 122
Originally Posted By: Old Man
Originally Posted By: CHAS
Horowitz, who denied being homosexual,[24] once joked, "There are three kinds of pianists: Jewish pianists, homosexual pianists, and bad pianists."

Score = two out of three.

When you are always the last one picked to be on a team, staying home with the piano has more appeal.

Yes, Rubinstein said that it was common knowledge among pianists that Horowitz was homosexual, but no one gave it a second thought.

Originally Posted By: debrucey
This has got nothing to do with stereotypING. This is to do with talking ABOUT stereotypes. How they arise, and whether or not there is any truth in them. This is not the same as being taken in by them.

Absolutely. Stereotypes are exploded and neutralized by discussing them, not by closing our eyes to them. And it's important to remember that stereotypes always contain a kernel of truth, no matter how distorted that truth may become over time.

A good example, (though unrelated to the topic at hand), is the old stereotype that blacks just love chicken and watermelon, as though this were some sort of genetic trait. Until fairly recently, the economic history of black Americans has required them to do a lot with very little, so finding inexpensive sources of protein (chicken), vegetables (greens of various types), and fruit (watermelon) would have been of paramount importance to them, as it would be to any poor family. These foods pack a lot of nutritional wallop, for relatively little money. This is called rational economic behavior, stretching a dollar, etc., and is not due to some innate craving for particular foods. Ironically, poor whites ate pretty much these same foods, yet managed to escape the stereotype. And that's because the essential truth within it was twisted to suit the malicious purposes of bigoted whites, who used it as one more opportunity to ridicule the life style of their fellow Americans who happened to be black.

IMO discussing stereotypes is a good thing. It allows us to break them down and separate the "truth part" from the "lie part". In the process, we can, perhaps, neutralize them entirely. But silence, I'm afraid, is simply acquiescence and only perpetuates the myth, or the "lie part".

Thank you. You stated, far more eloquently, what I was trying to say.

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#2029500 - 02/08/13 08:28 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Kreisler Offline



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Please don't quote inappropriate posts - it only encourages the trolls and takes twice as long to delete.
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#2029507 - 02/08/13 08:42 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
ju5t1n-h Offline
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This thread needs to be closed... moderators?
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#2029515 - 02/08/13 08:53 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: carey]
Old Man Offline
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Registered: 04/04/12
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Originally Posted By: carey
Originally Posted By: Old Man
Originally Posted By: carey
Originally Posted By: FSO
No no, Carey, let RonaldSteinway explain, I assume, himself; which of those qualities do heterosexuals miss out on? And females...? Um...I'm not judging your assertions but...it strikes me that you're insinuating that gay men have the highest chance of being perfect human beings...you're making some pretty bold claims here laugh

ha I didn't even want to acknowledge the "female" comment. Would any of our female PW members like to chime in here???? grin

I think one of them just did. She even addressed you by name. grin

You got me on that one !! smile

Actually, I had an unfair advantage. I had used the wrong pronoun on another thread, and then apologized. Her response was "Pfft, it happens", which endeared her to me forever. laugh

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#2029516 - 02/08/13 08:55 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Kreisler Offline



Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13799
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There's only been one moderator report so far, and I don't see a compelling reason to close it just yet. It's a dangerous topic, and my guess is the thread will go sour soon enough, but there are a few interesting ideas here and there, so I'll wait it out a bit longer.
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#2029521 - 02/08/13 08:59 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: ju5t1n-h]
Old Man Offline
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Registered: 04/04/12
Posts: 778
Loc: Michigan, USA
Originally Posted By: ju5t1n-h
This thread needs to be closed... moderators?
Why?

It will close of its own accord, like any other thread. So far, I think it's been interesting and 99% civil.

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#2029532 - 02/08/13 09:15 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
argerichfan Offline
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Registered: 11/15/06
Posts: 8903
Loc: Pacific Northwest, US.
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
There's only been one moderator report so far...

Amazing, those wimps who whine to a moderator at something perceived as offensive. Why not just stay off the thread? And during my commute home from work I seem to have missed some excitement!

And there have been some interesting ideas here...
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Jason

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#2029534 - 02/08/13 09:26 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
FSO Offline
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Registered: 04/03/12
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Loc: UK, Brighton
Words of your own have had similar enough effect on me, Old Man <3 Um...I rather like this thread; a lot of liberally minded enough people posting comments innocuously enough whilst worrying that their own wording or the wording of others might incite some form of homophobic revolt. I mean, um, this thread's hardly about to get out of hand; even the Horowitz quote became deconstructed so as to ensure all that no offence is being taken or received, transmitted or otherwise left lying around... laugh *and*, whilst the conservatively liberal may disagree, the thread began with a valid topic to which all the subsequent posts have pertained some degree of relevance; to close it at this juncture would be, in a way, to say that this is something that *shouldn't* be talked about...anyone who can't see the adverse long term effects of such needs binoculars...soo...um, thank you, Kreisler, for not blowing up the ship before it has a chance to sprig leaks and be abandoned.
Xxx
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Sometimes, we all just need to be shown a little kindness <3

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#2029537 - 02/08/13 09:36 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: argerichfan]
pianoloverus Online   content
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Registered: 05/29/01
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Originally Posted By: argerichfan
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
There's only been one moderator report so far...

Amazing, those wimps who whine to a moderator at something perceived as offensive.
The moderator agreed that the post was offensive. He deleted it and called it inappropriate.

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#2029539 - 02/08/13 09:37 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: FSO]
argerichfan Offline
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Registered: 11/15/06
Posts: 8903
Loc: Pacific Northwest, US.
Originally Posted By: FSO
... whilst the conservatively liberal may disagree...

Not quite sure what that means... but considering your location, I should imagine you as quite socially liberal. wink
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#2029542 - 02/08/13 09:40 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: pianoloverus]
argerichfan Offline
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Registered: 11/15/06
Posts: 8903
Loc: Pacific Northwest, US.
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
The moderator agreed that the post was offensive. He deleted it and called it inappropriate.

Well of course I never saw it... but still curious.
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#2029544 - 02/08/13 09:42 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
fledgehog Offline
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Registered: 01/09/11
Posts: 273
Loc: West Hartford, CT
I find it fascinating how easily some people take offense -- just because somebody said the word "gay" doesn't automatically make them homophobic or anti-gay. So far as I can tell, nothing in the OP is derogatory, insulting, or degrading. I think rather than getting all up in arms about "it shouldn't matter", we should all realize that no, it doesn't matter...but that doesn't mean it's not still an interesting correlation to study.

My own theory is that while male pianists are not more likely to be gay, gay men are more likely to be pianists. A lot of it has to do with the emotional sensitivity that many "alpha" type straight guys repress, or simply don't possess in the first place, and the fact that being a good performer requires a certain amount of outward flamboyancy. There are flamboyant straight men, and there are introverted gay men, I'm not trying to make any blanket statements here, but the point is that it's a fair point. It doesn't really matter, but it's still an interesting topic for idle discussion -- so long as people can realize the difference between discussing sexuality and being homophobic.

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#2029548 - 02/08/13 09:52 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: fledgehog]
FSO Offline
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Loc: UK, Brighton
Originally Posted By: fledgehog
I think rather than getting all up in arms about "it shouldn't matter", we should all realize that no, it doesn't matter...but that doesn't mean it's not still an interesting correlation to study.

Perfectly defining for me what I mean by "conservatively liberal"; Um...it's...well, homing in on notions, questions or even words that merely border non-"politically correct" in an attempt to enforce a free and loving environment rather than allowing one to grow naturally...
Edit: and yes...um...you could arguably call me socially liberal but don't let on; it's an awfully weak position to start off at laugh


Edited by FSO (02/08/13 09:54 PM)
Edit Reason: Stated
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#2029549 - 02/08/13 10:00 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: argerichfan]
carey Offline
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Registered: 05/13/05
Posts: 6372
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona
Originally Posted By: argerichfan
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
There's only been one moderator report so far...

Amazing, those wimps who whine to a moderator at something perceived as offensive. Why not just stay off the thread? And during my commute home from work I seem to have missed some excitement!

Not really. smile
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#2029562 - 02/08/13 10:41 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Ridicolosamente Offline
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Registered: 07/08/08
Posts: 1467
Loc: Miami, Florida, USA
Few thoughts:

1 -
Originally Posted By: fledgehog
My own theory is that while male pianists are not more likely to be gay, gay men are more likely to be pianists.
Interesting - kinda like "gymnastics doesn't make people short, short people make good gymnasts." But I don't think that necessarily applies here. Do fat people make better opera singers? I don't know - the yummy Jonas Kaufmann does pretty well for himself.

2 -
This topic comes up from time to time, and I always find it humorous how some enter conniption territory over such an innocent curiosity. "IT DOESN'T MATTER!!!1111" So Argerich likes (or liked...) her coffee and cigarettes, some pianists like french vanilla ice cream, and you know what? I would be interested to know if it turns out many "great" pianists like peanut butter on their bagels as much as I do? Why does it matter? I'm curious - stop getting so angry about it.

3 -
I also find it interesting that so many have chimed in - though no one has identified as gay. I am gay - and a very out-of-practice pianist smile I'm curious is all - NO IT DOESN'T MATTER!!!!111111

4-
As a gay man, I think there's credence to the suggested - it's simply easier to "be" gay in the arts. I'm out - but trust me that working in construction, it's not as comfortable to talk freely of my partner and love life. Things have improved, but it's still awkward for some. We'll get there...

-Daniel
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#2029567 - 02/08/13 10:50 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
GeorgeB Offline
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Registered: 06/06/10
Posts: 635
You can't compare being fat to being gay (no offence). You can lose weight more easily than to change your own instincts.

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#2029569 - 02/08/13 11:03 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
argerichfan Offline
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Registered: 11/15/06
Posts: 8903
Loc: Pacific Northwest, US.
FSO, you quoted the wrong post. laugh
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#2029572 - 02/08/13 11:13 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
FSO Offline
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Registered: 04/03/12
Posts: 854
Loc: UK, Brighton
I don't plagiarise the future, it's not my style. GeorgeB...well, firstly you *can't* change instincts consciously, that's what makes them instincts, and secondly...um...don't you think fat people have an instinct for cake? laugh
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#2029628 - 02/09/13 02:15 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: RonaldSteinway]
theJourney Offline
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Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 3946
Loc: Banned
Originally Posted By: RonaldSteinway
This is my thought why many good pianists are gay.

In order to play piano well, there are many qualities needed:

1. Sensitivity.
2. Physical agility and endurance (fingers movement, endurance to practice for a long time).
3. Strong thinking ability (like to figure out complex stuff).
4. Persistence and focus in reaching the goal
5. Meticulous and detail oriented .

Gay men have more chance to possess those required qualities, that is why many of them are more equipped to be good pianists. Females or Hetero men usually lack of one or more of the above components.


I'm confused. If I look at your list, then I would say that women would have an advantage over men for the majority of the items on your list based on some of the inherent observed biological and evolutionary psychological differences between the sexes (which are considered just as taboo or even more so to discuss in some circles). Yet, we all know that over the past couple hundred of years there have been many more male master pianists with long and spectacular careers than female ones... Something else is clearly going on here. And I think we all know exactly what, too.

We are all products of our social environment.

Gay men can hide the fact that they are homosexual (or at least depend on those who enforce an oppressive and creepy "Don't Ask, Don't Tell!" mask of silence)

However, outside of the odd Isaac Bashevis Singer short story, women can't hide the fact that they are women.

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#2029635 - 02/09/13 02:42 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Fugue14 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/13/09
Posts: 201
Knowing someone's sexual orientation is about as relevant as knowing how thoroughly they wipe after a bowel movement.

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#2029638 - 02/09/13 03:01 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Fugue14]
outo Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/02/12
Posts: 722
Loc: Finland
Originally Posted By: Fugue14
Knowing someone's sexual orientation is about as relevant as knowing how thoroughly they wipe after a bowel movement.


Both are important when looking for a mate I guess smile

For me this subject is interesting because I am a sociologist, not on personal level. But if I look at my personal experience: I have lots of friends and acquintances who are openly gay and a few who are still in the closet. They come from all areas of professional life. Only a couple are involved with arts. I also know some very good musicians and they are not gay. So I wonder how piano would be in any way special in this regard...

OH, and I now understand why I will never be a good piano player...it's my gender! grin


Edited by outo (02/09/13 03:04 AM)

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#2029648 - 02/09/13 04:08 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
izaldu Offline
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Registered: 09/18/08
Posts: 1250
Loc:
Bottomline is , no one can spot a woman or a man playing a certain piece. I don't believe for a second anyone would undergo a 100 sample test and get consistent results guessing whether its a woman or a mn playing. Let alone a homosexual, gay or lesbian. Same chance of guessing that you would have if you had to guess whether the person playing is bald , blonde or has a big nose. I think this discussion is a bit like some of 20th century "classical" music. It s legit as it explores many paths just for the sake of finding out where they ll take us, and whether tehy will take us anywhere. . But after some discussion, you realize, when you arrive at the end of those paths, there s nothing to see there.

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#2029652 - 02/09/13 04:22 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: izaldu]
theJourney Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 3946
Loc: Banned
Originally Posted By: izaldu
Bottomline is , no one can spot a woman or a man playing a certain piece. I don't believe for a second anyone would undergo a 100 sample test and get consistent results guessing whether its a woman or a mn playing.


This misses the point, I believe.

The question is not: "Can you hear the difference between all men and all women playing the piano while listening blindly?"

The question is: "Why have there been so few women master pianists (or women composers for that matter) with life long careers?"

This question is even more urgent when one realizes that in the course of the history of the piano many more women than men have been introduced to and trained on the instrument while a substantial portion of the classical sonata literature was even written with these women in mind.

The answer of course is that, in general, social norms required successful women pianists and composers to stop (or at least hide) their professional-level activities at such time as their father or husband, themselves blindly obeying social conventions, instructed them to do so.

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#2029657 - 02/09/13 04:41 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: argerichfan]
zapper Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/12/13
Posts: 77
Originally Posted By: argerichfan
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
There's only been one moderator report so far...

Amazing, those wimps who whine to a moderator at something perceived as offensive. Why not just stay off the thread? And during my commute home from work I seem to have missed some excitement!

And there have been some interesting ideas here...


Exactly right, Offnote's post was not offensive at all. It was very funny comment
Actually. Many here are very prudish or/and from the past as I see it. If you cannot stand
Open comments from everybody do not allow off topic threads at all and close this thread.

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#2029668 - 02/09/13 06:03 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: zapper]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7895
Originally Posted By: zapper
Originally Posted By: argerichfan
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
There's only been one moderator report so far...

Amazing, those wimps who whine to a moderator at something perceived as offensive. Why not just stay off the thread? And during my commute home from work I seem to have missed some excitement!

And there have been some interesting ideas here...


Exactly right, Offnote's post was not offensive at all. It was very funny comment
Actually. Many here are very prudish or/and from the past as I see it. If you cannot stand
Open comments from everybody do not allow off topic threads at all and close this thread.


I don't remember the whole thing, but it struck me as inappropriate for this forum. Besides the crudeness of the double entendre (which IMO wasn't really all that funny or clever), the tone could have been read as being a bit malicious - it wasn't all that clear that the poster approved of the subject matter.

At any rate, this isn't the place for dirty jokes. It just isn't (and that has nothing to do with personal prudishness, as anybody who knows me in real life would tell you).

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#2029671 - 02/09/13 06:09 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Fugue14]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
Originally Posted By: Fugue14
Knowing someone's sexual orientation is about as relevant as knowing how thoroughly they wipe after a bowel movement.


That's extremely important to know. Especially if you're gay.

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#2029672 - 02/09/13 06:16 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Ridicolosamente]
CHAS Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/25/03
Posts: 521
Loc: Ski Country of Colorado
Originally Posted By: Ridicolosamente
Few thoughts:

3 -
I also find it interesting that so many have chimed in - though no one has identified as gay. I am gay - and a very out-of-practice pianist smile I'm curious is all - NO IT DOESN'T MATTER!!!!11111

-Daniel


I quoted Horowitz and stated that I was two out of three. Did you think I am Jewish? smile
_________________________
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#2029674 - 02/09/13 06:17 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
debrucey Offline
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Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
I thought I implied pretty strongly that I'm of that persuasion lol

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#2029676 - 02/09/13 06:28 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: fledgehog]
JoelW Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4828
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: fledgehog


My own theory is that while male pianists are not more likely to be gay, gay men are more likely to be pianists. A lot of it has to do with the emotional sensitivity that many "alpha" type straight guys repress, or simply don't possess in the first place, and the fact that being a good performer requires a certain amount of outward flamboyancy. There are flamboyant straight men, and there are introverted gay men, I'm not trying to make any blanket statements here, but the point is that it's a fair point. It doesn't really matter, but it's still an interesting topic for idle discussion -- so long as people can realize the difference between discussing sexuality and being homophobic.


Sorry but this is just plain wrong. A man's musical sensitivity has nothing to do with being gay. It has to do with being a good musician. Period.

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#2029677 - 02/09/13 06:32 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: wr]
zapper Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/12/13
Posts: 77
Originally Posted By: wr
Originally Posted By: zapper
Originally Posted By: argerichfan
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
There's only been one moderator report so far...

Amazing, those wimps who whine to a moderator at something perceived as offensive. Why not just stay off the thread? And during my commute home from work I seem to have missed some excitement!

And there have been some interesting ideas here...


Exactly right, Offnote's post was not offensive at all. It was very funny comment
Actually. Many here are very prudish or/and from the past as I see it. If you cannot stand
Open comments from everybody do not allow off topic threads at all and close this thread.


At any rate, this isn't the place for dirty jokes. It just isn't (and that has nothing to do with personal prudishness, as anybody who knows me in real life would tell you).



Gush, explain to us how it was a dirty joke...and yes you are prudish.

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#2029680 - 02/09/13 06:36 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: zapper]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7895
Originally Posted By: zapper
Originally Posted By: wr
Originally Posted By: zapper
Originally Posted By: argerichfan
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
There's only been one moderator report so far...

Amazing, those wimps who whine to a moderator at something perceived as offensive. Why not just stay off the thread? And during my commute home from work I seem to have missed some excitement!

And there have been some interesting ideas here...


Exactly right, Offnote's post was not offensive at all. It was very funny comment
Actually. Many here are very prudish or/and from the past as I see it. If you cannot stand
Open comments from everybody do not allow off topic threads at all and close this thread.


At any rate, this isn't the place for dirty jokes. It just isn't (and that has nothing to do with personal prudishness, as anybody who knows me in real life would tell you).



Gush, explain to us how it was a dirty joke...and yes you are prudish.


Nope, ain't gonna bite.

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#2029686 - 02/09/13 06:44 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: JoelW]
theJourney Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 3946
Loc: Banned
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Sorry but this is just plain wrong. A man's musical sensitivity has nothing to do with being gay. It has to do with being a good musician. Period.


OK. And can you explain to us then what ALL the potential elements are that might make a man a good musician which, according to you determine a man's musical sensitivity?

Or, are some or all of those off limits for open discussion too because they don't match one's personal beliefs?

Reminds me somehow of the argument from the creationists that there has to be a god because of their belief in universal agency that everything has to proceed from or be created by something else....and then refuse to discuss who created god...and in turn who created her...

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#2029688 - 02/09/13 06:51 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: theJourney]
JoelW Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4828
Loc: USA

I'm really tempted to have a philosophical discussion right now, but I won't.


Quote:
OK. And can you explain to us then what ALL the potential elements are that might make a man a good musician which, according to you determine a man's musical sensitivity?


What makes a good basketball player? Or a good runner? What about artists? What makes them good painters/sculptors etc.? Talent and dedication. Not race, gender or orientation.


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#2029690 - 02/09/13 06:54 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
The 100m final at the olympics shows otherwise. Sure, it takes hard work and dedication to become a world class sprinter, but if you happen to have been born male and of African descent then you're at an advantage.


Edited by debrucey (02/09/13 06:57 AM)

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#2029692 - 02/09/13 07:02 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: debrucey]
JoelW Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4828
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: debrucey
The 100m final at the olympics shows otherwise. Sure, it takes hard work and dedication to become a world class sprinter, but if you happen to have been born male and of African descent then you're at an advantage.


Okay, I admit that's true. Black people are generally the best physically built. The ratio of well-built blacks to equally well-built whites (or any other race) is pretty darn high I'd say.

But does anyone honestly believe that the same ratio applies for gays vs. straights when it comes to raw musical talent? Come on...

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#2029693 - 02/09/13 07:04 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
I never said I believed that. I just object to your lack of willingness to at least question that hypothesis. There might be something in it, there might not. But you claim to already know the answer.

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#2029694 - 02/09/13 07:09 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: debrucey]
JoelW Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4828
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: debrucey
I never said I believed that. I just object to your lack of willingness to at least question that hypothesis. There might be something in it, there might not. But you claim to already know the answer.


I don't know anything for a 100% fact but the notion that gays naturally possess musical talent over straights just sounds so stupid to me.

And the reason why I object to that hypothesis is because there is no evidence to suggest that it's true.

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#2029696 - 02/09/13 07:16 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
GeorgeB Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/10
Posts: 635
there's a different between sensitivity and musical raw talent.
nowhere in the original question was said "is being gay a sign you are more musically talented?"

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#2029697 - 02/09/13 07:22 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
JoelW Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4828
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: GeorgeB
there's a different between sensitivity and musical raw talent.
nowhere in the original question was said "is being gay a sign you are more musically talented?"


The capacity for sensitivity IS encompassed in one's talent.

Musical talent doesn't just mean being able to play a piece the fastest. It's the whole shebang, sensitivity included.

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#2029699 - 02/09/13 07:26 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
FSO Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/03/12
Posts: 854
Loc: UK, Brighton
Males run faster, on average and, recordedly (come on, that *so* should be a word laugh ), at the extreme...that's a plain fact based on not only statistical data but biological (or mechanical, depending on your point of view) understanding. Um...African...less so bio-mechanically laugh but still so statistically. Piano-wise it would make sense to at least start out wondering whether there would be some difference; both are physical activities after all. A study (I forget which one, sue me laugh ) showed that males with typically low testosterone and females with typically high testosterone seem to be the most talented composers...also, um, male performers exhibited higher levels of testosterone than the average; for whatever reason (as we can't yet determine which causes {it's very likely causal but I'm open to the suggestion that hundreds sampled just happened to dodge the normal curve} the other), um, this would suggest female performers (who on the whole, for obvious reasons {don't make me go on about the whole progesterone malarky) would not match testosterone levels of a male with a similar background and as such would perform *differently* (not necessarily worse, as testosterone could always be a negative impact towards the quality performance, mind)...um...also, painters of both sexes show little to no (statistically insignificant differences) difference to the statistical norm...so...long story short, I think it *will* make a difference, but I couldn't say this with any degree of certainty. Sometimes I *could* tell though, when I'd hear piano through the walls way back in school...um...I'll put that down to luck though. We are made of these hormones; they shape how we think, how we feel, even how we perceive the world (for instance, oestragen will increase olfactory processing by a noticeable degree {this is the reason boys are so smelly :P [a flippant remark, please don't jump down my throat...fingers...meh laugh ]})...to outright say that how we think, feel and perceive the world will make no difference to how a pianist performs is to state, outright, that there is *no* personality in performance...I'm not on board laugh
Here endeth the lecture laugh
Xxx
Edit: Or not laugh Um...bringing it back to gays vs miserables (hohoho...no? *sigh* laugh ); as we don't know what makes homosexuality happen we *can't* know for sure whether there'd be a difference in the comparison...even if the reason is ephemeral (I totally believe in souls, despite having learnt about Science with a capital S...igh laugh )...that ephemerality would be where our personality comes from too and, then, we're back to all that litany I just spewed laugh


Edited by FSO (02/09/13 07:35 AM)
Edit Reason: Loads of typos... :(
_________________________
Sometimes, we all just need to be shown a little kindness <3

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#2029703 - 02/09/13 07:38 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7895
This thread gave me the idea of looking at the list of pianists in the "Great Pianists of the 20th Century", the collection of 100 2-CD volumes on Philips. You know, just to get an idea of the statistics.

The first thing that crossed my mind, upon looking at the list, is that I just don't know that much about the sexuality of many of them. The second thought was that, knowing that many gay or lesbian pianists may have hidden the reality of their sexuality from the world (just like people in other fields), the surface indicators of marriage and children don't really count.

So, in the end, it didn't really tell me much, except that reliable data going back very far is probably not easily available.

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#2029704 - 02/09/13 07:38 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: JoelW]
GeorgeB Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/10
Posts: 635
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: GeorgeB
there's a different between sensitivity and musical raw talent.
nowhere in the original question was said "is being gay a sign you are more musically talented?"


The capacity for sensitivity IS encompassed in one's talent.

Musical talent doesn't just mean being able to play a piece the fastest. It's the whole shebang, sensitivity included.

talent encompasses several things beyond sensitivity, hence both words are not interchangeable.

Sherlock strikes again. The example he gave showed a trait which leads to success and success in that case was running fast. Once again, your point is irrelevant as nobody mentioned speed and the physical ability of one to play the piano was directly affected by homosexuality.

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#2029705 - 02/09/13 07:40 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
GeorgeB Offline
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FSO. Please don't take offense with what I am going to say. Can you please structure your post with a few spaces? it is quite hard to read one big long paragraph.

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#2029708 - 02/09/13 07:53 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
JoelW Offline
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Originally Posted By: GeorgeB

talent encompasses several things beyond sensitivity


Exactly. That's what I meant by "the whole shebang".

Quote:

Sherlock strikes again. The example he gave showed a trait which leads to success and success in that case was running fast.


Yeah, that example (which was one of three) wasn't a good one and I admitted it.

Quote:

Once again, your point is irrelevant as nobody mentioned speed and the physical ability of one to play the piano was directly affected by homosexuality.


Ironically, the above is actually irrelevant as it pertains to my admittedly faulty example.

Also, if you were to read my posts thoroughly before trying to knock me down, you'd know that I said this just a few posts up:

Musical talent doesn't just mean being able to play a piece the fastest. It's the whole shebang, sensitivity included.

Thus proving your above statement even more meaningless.

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#2029711 - 02/09/13 07:58 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: JoelW]
theJourney Offline
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Originally Posted By: JoelW

I'm really tempted to have a philosophical discussion right now, but I won't.


That pretty much summarizes the gist of your contribution to the thread so far.

Collecting one's marbles and threatening to go home is not the same thing as participating constructively on the thread.

Go on, give into temptation!

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#2029712 - 02/09/13 07:58 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
JoelW Offline
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Originally Posted By: GeorgeB
FSO. Please don't take offense with what I am going to say. Can you please structure your post with a few spaces? it is quite hard to read one big long paragraph.


Oh FSO... how did you do on English essays? smile

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#2029714 - 02/09/13 07:58 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: theJourney]
JoelW Offline
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Originally Posted By: theJourney
Originally Posted By: JoelW

I'm really tempted to have a philosophical discussion right now, but I won't.


That pretty much summarizes the gist of your contribution to the thread so far.

Collecting one's marbles and threatening to go home is not the same thing as participating constructively on the thread.

Go on, give into temptation!


Well actually, I've been participating.

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#2029719 - 02/09/13 08:04 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Minnesota Marty Offline

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Hmmm - I've never considered whether a piano might be gay or straight. I'll have to ask the pianos I play. It's hard for a concert grand to be in the closet.
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#2029721 - 02/09/13 08:09 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: JoelW]
theJourney Offline
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Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: theJourney
Originally Posted By: JoelW

I'm really tempted to have a philosophical discussion right now, but I won't.


That pretty much summarizes the gist of your contribution to the thread so far.

Collecting one's marbles and threatening to go home is not the same thing as participating constructively on the thread.

Go on, give into temptation!


Well actually, I've been participating.


Saying in essence that the only thing that makes a good musician is being musical or that that which makes one musically sensitive is being a good musician or that those who are musically talented are musically talented because of their musical talent is to speak in tautologies.

To state categorically that the OP's question is irrelevant because you KNOW that sexual orientation has and cannot have any impact on the coincidence that there are any number of master pianists who have been revealed to have been gay is either to make a claim to secret knowledge or to state an unfounded opinion as fact and in its impact is but a variation on a theme stated by Silverwood et al.
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: GeorgeB

talent encompasses several things beyond sensitivity


Exactly. That's what I meant by "the whole shebang".



I can't imagine a better example of " the whole shebang " than one's entire personal identity, which for homosexuals is intimately tied up with the developmental issues which were discussed up thread.


Edited by theJourney (02/09/13 08:10 AM)
Edit Reason: accuracy

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#2029722 - 02/09/13 08:11 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
JoelW Offline
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I just don't think that liking men inherently makes you a better musician. The notion that "gays are more sensitive because of their hormone makeup, allowing for more sensitive musicality" just isn't convincing to me. By this logic, the majority of women are better musicians.

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#2029723 - 02/09/13 08:12 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: JoelW]
GeorgeB Offline
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Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: GeorgeB

talent encompasses several things beyond sensitivity


Exactly. That's what I meant by "the whole shebang".

Quote:

Sherlock strikes again. The example he gave showed a trait which leads to success and success in that case was running fast.


Yeah, that example (which was one of three) wasn't a good one and I admitted it.

Quote:

Once again, your point is irrelevant as nobody mentioned speed and the physical ability of one to play the piano was directly affected by homosexuality.


Ironically, the above is actually irrelevant as it pertains to my admittedly faulty example.

Also, if you were to read my posts thoroughly before trying to knock me down, you'd know that I said this just a few posts up:

Musical talent doesn't just mean being able to play a piece the fastest. It's the whole shebang, sensitivity included.

Thus proving your above statement even more meaningless.



Very conveniently, you missed out the bit that came after the first thing you quoted which makes a total difference to the point I was making .


And again, my point was that yours (about linking homosexuality to speed/physical ability) was irrelevant to the overall topic. Not really sure how quoting your point makes mine meaningless.


Edited by GeorgeB (02/09/13 08:15 AM)

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#2029725 - 02/09/13 08:17 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: JoelW]
theJourney Offline
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Originally Posted By: JoelW
I just don't think that liking men inherently makes you a better musician. By this logic, the majority of women are better musicians.


This thread is not about " liking men ".
This thread is about holding an open discussion about the apparent preponderance of gay master pianists and trying to understand and develop insight into what factors may be in play here.

Rather than just typing rapid-fire, random, off-topic opinions, why not take the time to go back and carefully read the thread, think and reflect about what you have read, separate it from your pre-formed bias and dogmatic formulations and then re-join the discussion?

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#2029726 - 02/09/13 08:20 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: theJourney]
GeorgeB Offline
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Originally Posted By: theJourney
Originally Posted By: JoelW
I just don't think that liking men inherently makes you a better musician. By this logic, the majority of women are better musicians.


This thread is not about " liking men ".
This thread is about holding an open discussion about the apparent preponderance of gay master pianists and trying to understand and develop insight into what factors may be in play here.

This is more what I had in mind when I was thinking about creating this thread.

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#2029728 - 02/09/13 08:22 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
JoelW Offline
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Originally Posted By: GeorgeB



And again, my point was that yours (about link homosexuality to speed/physical ability) was irrelevant to the overall topic. Not really sure how quoting your point makes mine meaningless.


I just went over this. It was an admittedly bad example.

This 'who said what where' game is getting tiresome. If you're actually interested in communicating our opinions to each-other, and you feel that I do not understand your point, please organize your opinions into a single paragraph and I will respond accordingly.

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#2029730 - 02/09/13 08:24 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: JoelW]
FSO Offline
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Originally Posted By: JoelW
Oh FSO... how did you do on English essays? smile

First in my school...to get 0% for presentation in *all* exams (for which it's marked) laugh
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#2029734 - 02/09/13 08:31 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
GeorgeB Offline
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if I am actually interested? Lol.

I am interested in reading peoples opinions. But when the other person who is attempting to argue, cuts out bits which are essential to the point being made or makes random points with no plausible explanation to back them up, one will get nowhere trying to discuss

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#2029735 - 02/09/13 08:32 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
JoelW Offline
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Okay, George.

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#2029739 - 02/09/13 08:40 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Kreisler]
zapper Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/12/13
Posts: 77
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
Please don't quote inappropriate posts - it only encourages the trolls and takes twice as long to delete.


gush, it's a shame moderators here cannot distinguish proper from non-proper post and they react on any idiot complaint...

p.s.
what happened with right to free speech in this country...

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#2029741 - 02/09/13 08:42 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: zapper]
debrucey Offline
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Registered: 01/18/06
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Originally Posted By: zapper

what happened with right to free speech in this country...


That was a stupid thing to say.

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#2029742 - 02/09/13 08:44 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
FSO Offline
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*Very* clichéd, certainly... smile
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#2029748 - 02/09/13 08:51 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
mermilylumpkin Offline
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Registered: 02/08/13
Posts: 121
Was it Horowitz or Rubinstein or someone who once joked that all pianists are either Jewish, gay or bad?

At any rate, I will take a stab. I think that the best music, what we admire in virtuoso pianists, has a spiritual quality to it. It gives you a feeling that you have access to that artist's inner world, which contains this rich spectrum of feeling that includes joy and melancholy and grief and playfulness, and these feelings are realized moment to moment and note-by-note in the music. I think in order for a person to be able to express the full range of human feeling in music, he must have had some experiences in his life to get him in touch with what it is to really reckon with pain and look suffering in the eye. In buddhist thought, it's necessary to have an honest experience of pain in order to have an honest experience of happiness.

You could say of the Jewish people that they have an almost ancestral sense of suffering. Reminders of the pain of life are built into ceremonies and celebrations, such as stepping on the glass cup during the wedding ceremony. I think it would be impossible for a gay man to have gone through his life in the 20th century without a substantial measure of pain due to the lack of acceptance and understanding he would have received. Being gay in Gilels or Horowitz's time can only have been incredibly isolating, and no wonder that they would have created these beautiful, perfect musical worlds as a refuge from that.

If you're interested in further reading, here's a Telegraph article on homosexuality and pianists. http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/culture/stephenhough/100006381/gay-pianists-can-you-tell/


Edited by mermilylumpkin (02/09/13 08:53 AM)

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#2029751 - 02/09/13 09:02 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
FSO Offline
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I was going to reference that! laugh Nice first post by the way...and welcome, if you're new.
Xxx
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Sometimes, we all just need to be shown a little kindness <3

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#2029752 - 02/09/13 09:02 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: debrucey]
theJourney Offline
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Originally Posted By: debrucey
The 100m final at the olympics shows otherwise. Sure, it takes hard work and dedication to become a world class sprinter, but if you happen to have been born male and of African descent then you're at an advantage.


This is a salient point.

Thus far we have discussed four principal hypothoses for the apparent proponderance of gay master pianists:

1. Those that are gay feel more comfortable being in the arts and out in the arts and/or felt attracted to the piano.

2. Because they are flamboyant or because it is unusual for pianists to be homosexual we develop a false perceptional bias that there is a preponderance.

3. The psycho-social challenges of growing up gay make some take to piano practice as a refuge or to later avoid confrontation and troubles in many discriminatory professions and to avoid becoming a priest, hairdresser or flower arranger.

4. The unique, psycho-social adversity of growing up gay makes some precociously consciously aware and sensitive which translates into longer term advantage in playing the piano.

A fifth reason may be:

5. There are physical differences in the makeup of homosexual men ('s brains) which provide them with long term advantage in going far with the piano.

We know that there are differences between male and female brains:

Quote:

Men's brains tend to perform tasks predominantly with the left-side, which is the logical/rational side of the brain. Women, on the other hand, use both sides of their brains because a woman's brain has a larger corpus callosum, which means women can transfer data between the right and left hemispheres faster than men.


We also know that -- as an integrative art -- successful piano performance requires a unique integration of ratio and emotio and integration within the brain and between the brain and the body. Young males who start early piano practice tend to grow a larger corpus collosum, while females, who already have larger ones, tend to achieve less marked differentiation from piano study.
http://www.musicianbrain.com/papers/Hyde_MusicTraining_BrainPlasticity_nyas_04852.pdf

We also know from research of the Dutch neuroscientist Dick Swaab that there are physical differences between the brains of homosexual men and heterosexual men, and these differences are formed already in the uterus.

Quote:

Current evidence indicates that sexual differentiation of the human brain occurs during fetal and neonatal development and programs our gender identity—our feeling of being male or female and our sexual orientation as hetero-, homo-, or bisexual. This sexual differentiation process is accompanied by many structural and functional brain differences among these groups... the Savic laboratory detected a sex-differentiated activation of the anterior hypothalamus in heterosexual men (HeM) and heterosexual women (HeW) and a sex-atypical, almost reversed, pattern of activation in homosexual men (HoM) and homosexual women (HoW). The hypothalamus (Fig. 1) is a small brain area located under the anterior commissure that is involved in many different functions

http://www.pnas.org/content/105/30/10273.full

How many other differences there may be of which we are not aware is unknown. However, this one would not seem to be trivial given the fact that musical performance is a temporal art form where micro timing differences can make all the difference in the world:

Quote:

In 1990, we described the first brain difference related to sexual orientation in the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN)—the brain's “clock”—which in homosexual men is twice the size that it is in heterosexual men...


Edited by theJourney (02/09/13 09:14 AM)
Edit Reason: completeness

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#2029758 - 02/09/13 09:07 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: theJourney]
JoelW Offline
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Quote:

We also know from research of the Dutch neuroscientist Dick Swaab...




That's too good.

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#2029760 - 02/09/13 09:13 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: JoelW]
stores Offline
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Registered: 12/28/09
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Loc: Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted By: JoelW
...the majority of women are better musicians.


I'd agree with that.
_________________________

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♪ ≠ $


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#2029762 - 02/09/13 09:17 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: zapper]
stores Offline
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Registered: 12/28/09
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Loc: Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted By: zapper

what happened with right to free speech in this country...


Which country would that be?
_________________________

"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

"It's ok if you disagree with me. I can't force you to be right."

♪ ≠ $


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#2029764 - 02/09/13 09:18 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: stores]
theJourney Offline
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Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: JoelW
...the majority of women are better musicians.


I'd agree with that.


Well, what I will say is that -- despite the depressing dearth -- some of my favorite master pianists are indeed women...

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#2029765 - 02/09/13 09:18 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: stores]
JoelW Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
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Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: zapper

what happened with right to free speech in this country...


Which country would that be?


Here, as opposed to there.

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#2029767 - 02/09/13 09:21 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: JoelW]
stores Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 6648
Loc: Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: zapper

what happened with right to free speech in this country...


Which country would that be?


Here, as opposed to there.


If, that is, you reside in the same country as zapper.
_________________________

"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

"It's ok if you disagree with me. I can't force you to be right."

♪ ≠ $


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#2029768 - 02/09/13 09:22 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: theJourney]
stores Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 6648
Loc: Here, as opposed to there
Originally Posted By: theJourney
Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: JoelW
...the majority of women are better musicians.


I'd agree with that.


some of my favorite master pianists are indeed women...


Ditto.
_________________________

"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

"It's ok if you disagree with me. I can't force you to be right."

♪ ≠ $


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#2029769 - 02/09/13 09:23 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
wayne33yrs Offline
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Registered: 03/31/11
Posts: 1865
Loc: Sheffield UK
Check out our Eric Satie, themed recital! Can you spot the 2 gays lol wink

http://www.pianoworld.com/forum/ubbthreads.php/topics/1993720/1/Erik%20Satie%20Themed%20Recital.html

We all had the same amount of time to learn our pieces, and are all at different levels smile


Edited by wayne33yrs (02/09/13 09:24 AM)

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#2029775 - 02/09/13 09:29 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Numerian Offline
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Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 1075
Stephen Hough is gay? Who would have thought? He doesn't act gay on stage. For that matter, Horowitz didn't act gay, and I sat about 15 feet away from him on stage for one of his concerts. Neither did Richter, but that was way back in the 60s and maybe I was too young or innocent to notice.

Perhaps if they put a sign on stage that said GAY PERFORMER, that would clarify these things. It might have helped when Richter, Gilels and Berman came over to the US if they had a sign that said CAUTION: COMMUNIST ON STAGE. Everyone would have known where these men stood politically. Or would we? They could have walked off stage and asked for political asylum, and some Soviet artists did. Sometimes, putting labels on artists doesn't help things.

Does anyone else feel this whole thread is getting silly? Do people honestly go to concerts by pianists and spend their time thinking about the sexual orientation of the performer? Even if a gay artist has suffered from a lifetime of repression, and is expressing that emotion in his playing, how are you, the listener, going to know this? All of us receive the emotional content of great music and notable performances in different ways, pertinent to our own lives, and only secondarily if at all do we think about the life of the performer (as in the case of someone like Geoffrey Helfgott). Probably the gayest pianist of them all, Liberace, understood this. As camped up as his costumes were, when it came to playing the piano, he made people forget about all that and just enjoy the music. I think it would be best all around if we just enjoyed the music of the many excellent pianists performing today, and not spend our time wondering what they are doing in their private lives.

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#2029781 - 02/09/13 09:35 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
debrucey Offline
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Loc: Manchester, UK
How is Liberace the gayest pianist of them all?

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#2029782 - 02/09/13 09:37 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
FSO Offline
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It's just discussion...it does no harm and, as such, can only be a good thing..right? Besides...when I hear music that fills me with love I may very well just happen to love the performer; I'm interested in those I love and can find even the dullest fact satisfying...so...um...would it be best if I just didn't think about those I love?
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#2029785 - 02/09/13 09:45 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: debrucey]
JoelW Offline
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Originally Posted By: debrucey
How is Liberace the gayest pianist of them all?


I think he just meant ''most flamboyant'' which is definitely true.

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#2029787 - 02/09/13 09:46 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Numerian]
theJourney Offline
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Originally Posted By: Numerian
I think it would be best all around if we just enjoyed the music of the many excellent pianists performing today, and not spend our time wondering what they are doing in their private lives.


Indeed. Those pesky gays should go crawl back into their holes or step back into the darkness of their closet. Only if they have a trophy wife on their arm should they have the nerve to rub our noses in the details of their private lives.

Wonder why for centuries and still today that there is such a lively market in (auto)biographies from Josquin to Lang Lang if no one is really interested in the lives of great artists?

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#2029788 - 02/09/13 09:54 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: debrucey]
theJourney Offline
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Originally Posted By: debrucey
How is Liberace the gayest pianist of them all?


Since when is Liberace considered a classical master pianist? It is like putting another Las Vegas performer such as Tom Jones on the same list as Pavarotti...

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#2029789 - 02/09/13 10:00 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Numerian Offline
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Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 1075
There are several threads in the archives about Liberace, in which his technical and artistic skills are discussed. It will always be a matter of opinion as to how good a pianist he was.

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#2029790 - 02/09/13 10:01 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
debrucey Offline
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Registered: 01/18/06
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Loc: Manchester, UK
Liberace was a hugely talented classical pianist actually. He just became famous for doing something else.

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#2029795 - 02/09/13 10:09 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: theJourney]
zapper Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/12/13
Posts: 77
Originally Posted By: theJourney
Originally Posted By: Numerian
I think it would be best all around if we just enjoyed the music of the many excellent pianists performing today, and not spend our time wondering what they are doing in their private lives.


Indeed. Those pesky gays should go crawl back into their holes or step back into the darkness of their closet. Only if they have a trophy wife on their arm should they have the nerve to rub our noses in the details of their private lives.

Wonder why for centuries and still today that there is such a lively market in (auto)biographies from Josquin to Lang Lang if no one is really interested in the lives of great artists?


only little people are interested in someone else closet life...

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#2029799 - 02/09/13 10:14 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Silverwood Pianos Offline
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Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 4215
Loc: Vancouver B. C. Canada


Originally Posted By: zapper

only little people are interested in someone else closet life...


Correct; it is the prurient fixation with things that are of no concern.
_________________________
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#2029800 - 02/09/13 10:16 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Numerian]
theJourney Offline
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Registered: 02/22/07
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Originally Posted By: Numerian
Stephen Hough is gay? Who would have thought? He doesn't act gay on stage.


What do you mean exactly?
Are you sure?


Originally Posted By: Numerian

Perhaps if they put a sign on stage that said GAY PERFORMER, that would clarify these things. It might have helped when Richter, Gilels and Berman came over to the US if they had a sign that said CAUTION: COMMUNIST ON STAGE.


Interesting thought.

You could write entire books about the impact that composing and performing under the oppressive psycho-social contradictions that the communist regime had on Dimitri Shostakovich and what his real political persuasions were versus what was expedient. In fact, several books have been written on the subject. They are perhaps not so different from those of a closeted gay growing up under the oppressive contradictions of a straight society, that until very recently and only in a tiny fraction of the world, criminalized and demonized those who were bold enough to expose the truth about their human identity.

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#2029802 - 02/09/13 10:19 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: zapper]
theJourney Offline
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Judge and condemn much?

Originally Posted By: zapper
only little people are interested in someone else closet life...


And if they are interested in someone else's non-closeted life?

Are all those people who read biographies of Mozart or Richter per definition " little people" ?

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#2029804 - 02/09/13 10:32 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Silverwood Pianos]
FSO Offline
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Registered: 04/03/12
Posts: 854
Loc: UK, Brighton
Originally Posted By: Silverwood Pianos


Originally Posted By: zapper

only little people are interested in someone else closet life...


Correct; it is the prurient fixation with things that are of no concern.

Well...I'll agree it may be rude to pry, but I thought most of the pianists disclosed their sexuality at one point or another. Oh...and let's not bring dwarfism into this mess laugh Of course, stating that it's prurient is entirely tautologous, but of no concern? I'm sure it was a great concern to those involved and, as those interested in music and its history, shouldn't that which concerns the titans of the discipline concern us too? I mean, um, do you indulge no curiosity? Do you hear of Scriabin's madness and just say "that's irrelevant with regard to the technical aspects of his compositions; do not tire me with details of his life, he is nothing but a vessel for my enjoyment, I don't care about him or anything he thinks now, please, tell me more about the spelling of that accidental..."... laugh Sorry, but, um, I can't imagine you're not a tiny bit interested in the influences (and by extension, lifestyles) of pianists and composers. If you aren't then forgive me and your point is fair enough for you but quite a lot of the rest of us care about *how* music is made, down to the finest detail.
Xxx
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#2029809 - 02/09/13 10:43 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
R0B Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/03/08
Posts: 1439
Loc: Australia
I often feel gay, but am not a homosexual.

Please give us our language back. frown
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Rob

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#2029814 - 02/09/13 10:52 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
R0B is the name of a gay sex shop in Manchester lol, how ironic.

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#2029826 - 02/09/13 11:09 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: debrucey]
R0B Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/03/08
Posts: 1439
Loc: Australia
I didn't notice it when I was in Manchester, three weeks ago.
But nothing would surprise me anymore ha
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#2029835 - 02/09/13 11:24 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
wayne33yrs Offline
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Registered: 03/31/11
Posts: 1865
Loc: Sheffield UK
exellent! smile


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#2029837 - 02/09/13 11:24 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
It's not on the high street haha

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#2029846 - 02/09/13 11:51 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: stores]
wower Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/13/10
Posts: 242
Loc: Calgary
Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: theJourney
Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: JoelW
...the majority of women are better musicians.


I'd agree with that.


some of my favorite master pianists are indeed women...


Ditto.


I was telling my girlfriend some months ago of this exact fact and she just rolled her eyes at me.
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#2029851 - 02/09/13 11:58 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Silverwood Pianos]
Old Man Offline
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Registered: 04/04/12
Posts: 778
Loc: Michigan, USA
Originally Posted By: Silverwood Pianos

Originally Posted By: zapper

only little people are interested in someone else closet life...

Correct; it is the prurient fixation with things that are of no concern.

Is this thread one of your own "prurient fixations"? You made your thoughts known to us two days ago, but you seem unable to resist making them known again. I respect your opinion, but what is the point? There are thousands of threads that should be more to your liking, so why waste time repeatedly identifying the fixations of us "little people"?

I would point out that this thread is less than 40 hours old, and has already garnered 2500 views and 150 replies. That is an amazing amount of traffic, so obviously there is interest in the topic. (Yes, yes, I'm sure it's all "prurient".) But I have to say that the thread has remained relatively on-topic, serious and thoughtful, and has not devolved into the sort of lewd snicker-fest that some may have feared.

You say the topic is not important, it doesn't matter, it's none of our concern, and you're right. But what thread does matter, and is important? Look through the list. I see nothing. Most of the topics in this forum are born of curiosity, and nothing more. Most discussions are of the have-you-ever-noticed variety, exactly like the personal conversations that people engage in all the time.

When you're unhappy at the party you're at, simply find a different party. It's not that difficult.

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#2029864 - 02/09/13 12:26 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
FSO Offline
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...Or get so liberally plastered that you awake next to the piano with the terrible thought "I can't...oh, please, no...what the heck happened last night?" as you see reams of Ludovico Einaudi scattered about the room laugh
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#2029870 - 02/09/13 12:36 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: stores]
offnote Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/10/10
Posts: 258
Loc: Banned
Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: theJourney
Originally Posted By: stores
Originally Posted By: JoelW
...the majority of women are better musicians.


I'd agree with that.


some of my favorite master pianists are indeed women...


Ditto.


*Deleted*


Edited by BB Player (02/09/13 12:53 PM)
Edit Reason: Another offensive comment deleted. Threshold reached.

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#2029875 - 02/09/13 12:50 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: debrucey]
Fugue14 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/13/09
Posts: 201
Originally Posted By: debrucey
Originally Posted By: Fugue14
Knowing someone's sexual orientation is about as relevant as knowing how thoroughly they wipe after a bowel movement.


That's extremely important to know. Especially if you're gay.


I meant as a listener...

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#2029876 - 02/09/13 12:50 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: offnote]
offnote Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/10/10
Posts: 258
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You wanna talk about artists backstage life yet you don't understand what it takes to be a great artist and you are ofended easily by the same things you're curious about. It takes drugs, dirty sex, alcohol and more - all the topics you forbid to talk about on this forum. Get real and look into mirror...

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#2029881 - 02/09/13 01:03 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Steve Chandler Offline
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Registered: 02/18/05
Posts: 2760
Loc: Urbandale, Iowa
Wow 16 pages in less than 2 days, incredible. This topic is obviously of great interest. I understand those who say that sexual orientation is none of my business. What gay men do behind closed doors gives me the creeps. However, I fully respect and support their right to express their affection as they choose (though if it's in public they may be subject to legal action) and make lifelong commitments (get married). However, I disagree that it's none of our business. These are (were) public figures and there's no doubt that their sexual orientation affected their artistic personae. Prior to this thread I didn't know that Richter and Hough were gay. It doesn't change my appreciation for their prodigious talents.

Obviously this is speculation for me, but think about it, a young gay teen won't be distracted into chasing girls as an adolescent and may also be terrified of chasing other boys. That leaves more time for practicing. The stress of having that secret may allow them to gain greater emotional experience which may inform their interpretations of the repertoire. More time to practice and a heavier emotional weight strikes me as a recipe for great pianism if you add in the other necessities, talent, drive to succeed, and opportunity. Given that Jews also faced discrimination and have a culture of success the Horowitz quote takes on significant potential of exposing truth. I have seen capable young boys give up piano perhaps because they thought it was a gay activity.

So I believe the question is a very interesting one and I especially appreciate that the vast majority of this discussion has been either intelligent, light hearted humor or both. To get all PC and say that sexual orientation has no bearing on artistic ability is to diminish the impact of sexual orientation on artistic growth and experience. If we can't discuss the matter as adults for fear of offending someone then we can't explore some of the most important aspects of the human experience.

I thought Stephen Hough's blog was intelligent and forthright. Exactly what we need more of. Thanks for posting the link.


Edited by Steve Chandler (02/09/13 01:06 PM)
Edit Reason: typo

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#2029897 - 02/09/13 01:39 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Steve Chandler]
FSO Offline
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Registered: 04/03/12
Posts: 854
Loc: UK, Brighton
Originally Posted By: Steve Chandler
What gay men do behind closed doors gives me the creeps. [...] If we can't discuss the matter as adults for fear of offending someone then we can't explore some of the most important aspects of the human experience.

I can't agree more with your latter statement...and your former one reminds me enough to say how sorry I feel for homophobics (inadequate though the term may be); increasingly so, homophobics, racists, anti-Semites etc. become less able to express how they feel and are taught or otherwise told to feel shameful and wicked for their thoughts...um...almost ironic (but not quite) laugh I commend you for having the courage to say outright how you feel. The fact that you bolstered your position by nearly stating that it's an irrational "creeps" and that you respect the life experiences of others despite these creeping sensations slightly diminishes the almost impossible struggle against prejudice (homophobic rights, anyone? laugh )...um...also, you expressed yourself in, with regards to this topic, possibly the most mature and considerate manner I've yet come across...in short, in my opinion, excellent post; gold star. Fortunately, I don't share your affliction (to put it dramatically), but I heavily respect your standpoint (in that you've actually given it some decent thought) and you as a person.
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#2029902 - 02/09/13 01:45 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Bob Newbie Offline
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Registered: 09/02/06
Posts: 1549
The question is.. is it classical music? or piano & classical lessons?
are their any jazz(gay)players?

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#2029913 - 02/09/13 02:00 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
wayne33yrs Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/31/11
Posts: 1865
Loc: Sheffield UK
Sure..... a ginger gay, playing Jazz wink


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#2029990 - 02/09/13 05:11 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: FSO]
Old Man Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/04/12
Posts: 778
Loc: Michigan, USA
Originally Posted By: FSO
Originally Posted By: Steve Chandler
What gay men do behind closed doors gives me the creeps. [...] If we can't discuss the matter as adults for fear of offending someone then we can't explore some of the most important aspects of the human experience.

I can't agree more with your latter statement...and your former one reminds me enough to say how sorry I feel for homophobics (inadequate though the term may be); increasingly so, homophobics, racists, anti-Semites etc. become less able to express how they feel and are taught or otherwise told to feel shameful and wicked for their thoughts...um...almost ironic (but not quite) laugh I commend you for having the courage to say outright how you feel. The fact that you bolstered your position by nearly stating that it's an irrational "creeps" and that you respect the life experiences of others despite these creeping sensations slightly diminishes the almost impossible struggle against prejudice (homophobic rights, anyone? laugh )...um...also, you expressed yourself in, with regards to this topic, possibly the most mature and considerate manner I've yet come across...in short, in my opinion, excellent post; gold star. Fortunately, I don't share your affliction (to put it dramatically), but I heavily respect your standpoint (in that you've actually given it some decent thought) and you as a person.

FSO, I have to disagree with your characterization of Steve Chandler's comment as homophobic. One may quibble with his choice of words, but I think he's simply expressing his own orientation, which is straight. I suspect that many gays might call what straight men and women do in the bedroom "creepy" as well. It's not a judgement of them as human beings, but of their sexual activities, and merely expresses the "yuck factor" that those on both ends of the spectrum feel when imagining the sexual life of the other.

But that is a far cry from homophobia. There are too many true homophobes walking around, especially here in the states, to devalue the meaning of the word by applying it too broadly. I've encountered many in my lifetime, and they view gays as sick, perverted, depraved human beings who choose their orientation, choose their life style, and fully deserve any and every tribulation that may ever befall them. There are many areas in this country, where a gay man is risking life and limb to even think of having a drink in a "straight" bar, assuming that his orientation might possibly be revealed to other customers. This is true homophobia, and it can be a deadly serious business.

We are all walking cauldrons of emotions and feelings, shaped by an assortment of biases and prejudices, whether we admit it or not. I will plead guilty myself to the same "affliction" you diagnosed Mr. Chandler with. I even find it unsettling (preferable to "creepy"? grin) to see men showing affection in public. It's not their problem, it's my own. Yet there is no way I can simply wish away that reaction, any more than I can wish away my reaction to a Brahms symphony. But what I can do is recognize it as irrational, as a prejudice that's part of me, and rely on reason to guide my beliefs. I fully support gay rights, including gay marriage, because my head tells me it's the right thing to do, even if my gut may occasionally balk a little. smile

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#2030016 - 02/09/13 06:40 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
There is no yuck factor for me about what straight people do in the privacy of their bedrooms. I'm at worst ambivalent about it. But I suppose I can understand why some people might find it odd to think about if they aren't that way inclined. The idea however of being unsettled merely by the sight of two people showing affection for each other (or rather certain specific types of people more than others) I can't understand at all. I agree that homophobia is probably a bit strong a word for that, but you're right, it's definitely irrational, and I hate when people try and defend it.

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#2030020 - 02/09/13 06:54 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: debrucey]
JoelW Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4828
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: debrucey
There is no yuck factor for me about what straight people do in the privacy of their bedrooms. I'm at worst ambivalent about it. But I suppose I can understand why some people might find it odd to think about if they aren't that way inclined. The idea however of being unsettled merely by the sight of two people showing affection for each other (or rather certain specific types of people more than others) I can't understand at all. I agree that homophobia is probably a bit strong a word for that, but you're right, it's definitely irrational, and I hate when people try and defend it.


Who cares? If someone is grossed out by it, let them be.

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#2030025 - 02/09/13 07:08 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
debrucey Offline
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Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
It must be nice to live in your own little world where nothing affects anything else.

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#2030028 - 02/09/13 07:09 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Old Man]
FSO Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/03/12
Posts: 854
Loc: UK, Brighton
Originally Posted By: Old Man
FSO, I have to disagree with your characterization of Steve Chandler's comment as homophobic. One may quibble with his choice of words, but I think he's simply expressing his own orientation, which is straight. I suspect that many gays might call what straight men and women do in the bedroom "creepy" as well. It's not a judgement of them as human beings, but of their sexual activities, and merely expresses the "yuck factor" that those on both ends of the spectrum feel when imagining the sexual life of the other.

But that is a far cry from homophobia. There are too many true homophobes walking around, especially here in the states, to devalue the meaning of the word by applying it too broadly. I've encountered many in my lifetime, and they view gays as sick, perverted, depraved human beings who choose their orientation, choose their life style, and fully deserve any and every tribulation that may ever befall them. There are many areas in this country, where a gay man is risking life and limb to even think of having a drink in a "straight" bar, assuming that his orientation might possibly be revealed to other customers. This is true homophobia, and it can be a deadly serious business.

We are all walking cauldrons of emotions and feelings, shaped by an assortment of biases and prejudices, whether we admit it or not. I will plead guilty myself to the same "affliction" you diagnosed Mr. Chandler with. I even find it unsettling (preferable to "creepy"? grin) to see men showing affection in public. It's not their problem, it's my own. Yet there is no way I can simply wish away that reaction, any more than I can wish away my reaction to a Brahms symphony. But what I can do is recognize it as irrational, as a prejudice that's part of me, and rely on reason to guide my beliefs. I fully support gay rights, including gay marriage, because my head tells me it's the right thing to do, even if my gut may occasionally balk a little. smile

See I...we...sorry, I *really* didn't make myself clear; I perhaps stated too lightly how *inadequate* the term homophobe is...that there is merely one word to encompass any degree of unsettlement is abominable and leads to just this kind of thing laugh Um...it's strange though; quite a lot of straight men seem to like seeing homosexual *women* snogging away...which would suggest it's more about attraction than whether the...um...activities are similarly choreographed...but...then surely they would hate seeing heterosexuals out together as half of the couple should be creeping them out...I just think it's one of "those things". Um...perhaps I read too much into Steve's comment, in which case I apologise...see, I'm anti-prejudice but you're under the misapprehension that that's what you are...if you don't like broccoli but have tried it enough times you can't be prejudiced; it's only having had no experience (or too little) that pops you into that category. Now, um, if it makes your stomach balk a bit, that's fine, it just is. I can keep waffling but I'm sure you've got it by now...oh, and just so you know, the LGBT get the royal stuffing kicked out of them world over; I've been assaulted and, at the lower end, had the right Michael taken out of me for what many would call my "choices". laugh Just saying, um, I do know what some *very* whatever-phobic people can get up to.
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#2030029 - 02/09/13 07:11 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
Why do you write 'um' and '...' so much?

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#2030037 - 02/09/13 07:31 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: debrucey]
JoelW Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4828
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: debrucey
It must be nice to live in your own little world where nothing affects anything else.


If you think people getting grossed out by homosexual PDA is "irrational" then you're the one living in your own little world, buddy. I'm not prejudiced against gays. I believe in equal rights too, but when I see gay PDA I can't help but feel a little stirred. It's a natural reaction I have, and I'm not the only one.

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#2030040 - 02/09/13 07:36 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: FSO]
Michael_99 Offline
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Registered: 07/28/12
Posts: 935
Loc: Canada Alberta
Creeping out! The funny thing is that probably the worst swear word is what women do for men and gay men to each other.

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#2030041 - 02/09/13 07:37 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Michael_99]
JoelW Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4828
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: Michael_99
Creeping out! The funny thing is that probably the worst swear word is what women do for men and gay men to each other.


?

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#2030044 - 02/09/13 07:48 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: debrucey]
argerichfan Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/15/06
Posts: 8903
Loc: Pacific Northwest, US.
Originally Posted By: debrucey
Why do you write 'um' and '...' so much?

Because his posts seem merely confused.

During my years in the UK I escaped London for Brighton frequently, but never met anyone quite as flowery as FSO. I was there for one reason, no apologies for that, and no games or silly complications involved.

Fortified with a decent breakfast, the Anglo-Catholic Sunday service at St. Bartholomew's was giddily High Church, the smoky incense rendering irrelevant the need for a shower.
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#2030045 - 02/09/13 07:50 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: JoelW]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: debrucey
It must be nice to live in your own little world where nothing affects anything else.


If you think people getting grossed out by homosexual PDA is "irrational" then you're the one living in your own little world, buddy. I'm not prejudiced against gays. I believe in equal rights too, but when I see gay PDA I can't help but feel a little stirred. It's a natural reaction I have, and I'm not the only one.


Yes, well thats because it's widespread. That doesn't mean it's not irrational.

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#2030053 - 02/09/13 08:06 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Michael_99]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
Originally Posted By: Michael_99
Creeping out! The funny thing is that probably the worst swear word is what women do for men and gay men to each other.


What word is that?

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#2030054 - 02/09/13 08:06 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: debrucey]
JoelW Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4828
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: debrucey
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: debrucey
It must be nice to live in your own little world where nothing affects anything else.


If you think people getting grossed out by homosexual PDA is "irrational" then you're the one living in your own little world, buddy. I'm not prejudiced against gays. I believe in equal rights too, but when I see gay PDA I can't help but feel a little stirred. It's a natural reaction I have, and I'm not the only one.


Yes, well thats because it's widespread. That doesn't mean it's not irrational.


You have no argument unless you prove why it's irrational.

You can't say it's "irrational" just because you don't like it. That's the exact kind of logic homophobes use against gays.

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#2030058 - 02/09/13 08:13 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
Lmao, if you say so.

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#2030061 - 02/09/13 08:18 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: JoelW]
FSO Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/03/12
Posts: 854
Loc: UK, Brighton
Originally Posted By: JoelW
You have no argument unless you prove why it's irrational.

Not sure that's true...but...how about, as everyone seems inclined to say, its nun off you're businiss? laugh I mean, the only reason to fear something is if it's perceived to be a large threat and disgust comes from an inherent understanding of tiny threats (repulsive smells, for instance, indicate rotting which in turn indicates potentially harmful bacteria)...um...what threats do homosexuals pose? We also find disgust in a social sense; microscopic threats to the community produced by individuals. Um...so...is the threat that we notice a very slight diminishing of the gene pool? That's all I can imagine and even that's at a stretch...but anyway, your point is invalid; fear of spiders is widespread and irrational. There *are* poisonous spiders (well...none here laugh )...so you reckon you have to *prove* the fear of spiders is irrational, otherwise there's no argument for it to be so? Hmm...not holding up somewhere I believe...
Edit: Argerichfan; aww! That's unseemly sweet (to me at least)..I can hack being confused if I get to be flowery ^>^ Debussyist; because I'm, irrevocably and deep down, a pillock...is that a good enough answer?


Edited by FSO (02/09/13 08:21 PM)
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#2030067 - 02/09/13 08:22 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
FSO Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/03/12
Posts: 854
Loc: UK, Brighton
So...where do we stand on the spiders thing?
_________________________
Sometimes, we all just need to be shown a little kindness <3

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#2030068 - 02/09/13 08:26 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
JoelW Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4828
Loc: USA
God I feel like such a #$*%ing idiot right now. I was associating "irrational" with "unnatural". My apologies, Debrucey.

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#2030103 - 02/09/13 09:28 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7895
The "yuck factor" seems to me to be conditioning, rather than innate, i.e., genetic. What might be innate is a lack of interest, rather than an aversion. And, many times, what has been conditioned can also be de-conditioned if one really wants to - it can be "wished away", so to speak. But that takes work, and may not be worth the effort for many people.

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#2030150 - 02/09/13 10:45 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Kreisler Offline



Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13799
Loc: Iowa City, IA
I don't think "yuck factor" is really the right word. It's not about "yuck," and it's not even about sexuality. It's about discomfort with things that are unfamiliar.

Three quick stories from personal experience:

I used to feel uncomfortable around homosexuals. I grew up in the bible belt, homosexuality was extremely underground in my hometown. But in college, the luck of the draw gave me a gay roommate and one night he and his friends invited me out to the movies. I must have had an awkward, terrified look on my face, because one of his friends quickly said "by the way, all of us are gay and I have AIDS, and we totally understand if you don't want to go." I made a quick joke: "Two conditions: you have to promise not to bleed on me and you have to introduce me to all the cute girls you know as your 'single straight friend'." I made four new, good friends that night, overcame my discomfort in a matter of months, and have never felt the least bit uncomfortable around homosexuals since.

Like many, I also used to feel a bit uncomfortable in hospitals and nursing homes. But as luck would have it, I spent my junior high and high school years getting my hair cut by a barber who just happened to have his barbershop in a hospital (my parents knew him so that's where they took me.) Also, to make extra money, I used to do variety/magic shows in nursing homes with a couple of friends. I also got a job in college doing food service at an assisted living facility. I got used to being in hospitals and around sick people and to this day, despite having had some bad experiences in hospitals, I don't think twice about walking in the door. (Which is also good since my wife works at a hospital!)

Interestingly enough, about 9 years ago, I was invited to play a fundraiser at the home of a board member for the orchestra I was in. They were in the process of raising $30 million for a new arts facility. For the first time in my life, I found myself in a room with fifty millionaires. And I felt really uncomfortable. Having grownup in a lower-middle class family, I didn't understand these people and the world they lived in. To me, they seemed arrogant, self-important, lazy, and unfeeling. Over the course of a couple years, I got to know some of them and discovered that none of them were any of those things. They were wonderful people who, aside from the money, were really no different than people like me.
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

www.pianoped.com
www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed

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#2030177 - 02/09/13 11:57 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: debrucey]
Old Man Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/04/12
Posts: 778
Loc: Michigan, USA
Originally Posted By: debrucey
There is no yuck factor for me about what straight people do in the privacy of their bedrooms. I'm at worst ambivalent about it. But I suppose I can understand why some people might find it odd to think about if they aren't that way inclined. The idea however of being unsettled merely by the sight of two people showing affection for each other (or rather certain specific types of people more than others) I can't understand at all. I agree that homophobia is probably a bit strong a word for that, but you're right, it's definitely irrational, and I hate when people try and defend it.

debrucey, I'm sorry for using the term "yuck factor". That was way too strong a way of describing discomfort. I was thinking more of "strange", "foreign", or "unsettling" (to use your word). After all, sexual orientation involves feelings of attraction toward a specific gender, so it would make sense that both straights and gays might find the habits of the other to be strange, or difficult to understand. But "yuck" is a bit over the top.

As far as being "unsettled" by seeing open displays of affection, that is probably due to simple cultural conditioning, as wr already pointed out. I only brought it up to point out that all of us have inexplicable reactions to things that we cannot control. The key is to recognize these irrational feelings and reactions, and use our rational side to declare our independence from them. I'm sure that in another generation or two, no one will be unsettled by any of this, and discussions such as this will seem quaint. grin

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#2030245 - 02/10/13 03:33 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
I hope so haha

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#2030312 - 02/10/13 08:18 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Numerian Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 1075
Millionaires! Yuck. How could you stand it. You know they carry that 1% virus.

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#2030369 - 02/10/13 09:59 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: FSO]
Old Man Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/04/12
Posts: 778
Loc: Michigan, USA
Originally Posted By: FSO
See I...we...sorry, I *really* didn't make myself clear; I perhaps stated too lightly how *inadequate* the term homophobe is...that there is merely one word to encompass any degree of unsettlement is abominable and leads to just this kind of thing laugh Um...it's strange though; quite a lot of straight men seem to like seeing homosexual *women* snogging away...which would suggest it's more about attraction than whether the...um...activities are similarly choreographed...but...then surely they would hate seeing heterosexuals out together as half of the couple should be creeping them out...I just think it's one of "those things". Um...perhaps I read too much into Steve's comment, in which case I apologise...see, I'm anti-prejudice but you're under the misapprehension that that's what you are...if you don't like broccoli but have tried it enough times you can't be prejudiced; it's only having had no experience (or too little) that pops you into that category. Now, um, if it makes your stomach balk a bit, that's fine, it just is. I can keep waffling but I'm sure you've got it by now...oh, and just so you know, the LGBT get the royal stuffing kicked out of them world over; I've been assaulted and, at the lower end, had the right Michael taken out of me for what many would call my "choices". laugh Just saying, um, I do know what some *very* whatever-phobic people can get up to.

Yes, the word is certainly inadequate, but I now understand what you meant. Thanks for the clarification. Since I agreed 100% with what Steve was saying, it was disconcerting to then see his words labeled "homophobic". The ol' defense mechanism kicked in, and well, there you have it.

I know that "the road to heck is paved with good intentions", but I hope that until we old guys fade away, good will still counts for something. smile

(And I can't believe the software editor just changed "h*ll" to "heck"! mad)

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#2030372 - 02/10/13 10:01 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Old Man]
JoelW Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4828
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: Old Man


(And I can't believe the software editor just changed "h*ll" to "heck"! mad)



Yeah, that really doesn't make sense. You can say it on TV, but not on PW? Hmmmm...

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#2030403 - 02/10/13 11:15 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
wayne33yrs Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/31/11
Posts: 1865
Loc: Sheffield UK
lol smile


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#2030407 - 02/10/13 11:20 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
debrucey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 2606
Loc: Manchester, UK
I love Gimme Gimme Gimme laugh

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#2030559 - 02/10/13 02:37 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: JoelW]
carey Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/13/05
Posts: 6372
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: Old Man


(And I can't believe the software editor just changed "h*ll" to "heck"! mad)



Yeah, that really doesn't make sense. You can say it on TV, but not on PW? Hmmmm...


Consider the possibilities.....

"Go to heck!!"
"Burn in heck"
"When heck freezes over"
"A cold day in heck"
"Heaven and heck"
"Been to heck and back"
"One heck of a pianist" (well perhaps this one isn't so strange)

But I digress...... grin
_________________________
YouTube channel - http://www.youtube.com/user/pianophilo

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#2030611 - 02/10/13 03:56 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: carey]
Old Man Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/04/12
Posts: 778
Loc: Michigan, USA
Originally Posted By: carey
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: Old Man


(And I can't believe the software editor just changed "h*ll" to "heck"! mad)



Yeah, that really doesn't make sense. You can say it on TV, but not on PW? Hmmmm...


Consider the possibilities.....

"Go to heck!!"
"Burn in heck"
"When heck freezes over"
"A cold day in heck"
"Heaven and heck"
"Been to heck and back"
"One heck of a pianist" (well perhaps this one isn't so strange)

But I digress...... grin


ha

A further digression.

"The gates of heck"
"Heck on earth"
"Heck, Michigan"

and ... dare I? ... I dare

"Heck hath no fury like a woman scorned."

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#2030637 - 02/10/13 04:32 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
Mark... Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/27/06
Posts: 4380
Loc: Jersey Shore
Don't laugh...

I sometimes wonder, if as a straight male I need to find a feminine side in order to bring out a better more musical sound. It's hard to describe.

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#2030638 - 02/10/13 04:33 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Old Man]
carey Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/13/05
Posts: 6372
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona
Originally Posted By: Old Man

and ... dare I? ... I dare
"Heck hath no fury like a woman scorned."

Heck yes !!!! thumb
_________________________
YouTube channel - http://www.youtube.com/user/pianophilo

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#2030696 - 02/10/13 05:48 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Old Man]
ando Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/10
Posts: 3612
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
Originally Posted By: Old Man
Originally Posted By: carey
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: Old Man


(And I can't believe the software editor just changed "h*ll" to "heck"! mad)



Yeah, that really doesn't make sense. You can say it on TV, but not on PW? Hmmmm...


Consider the possibilities.....

"Go to heck!!"
"Burn in heck"
"When heck freezes over"
"A cold day in heck"
"Heaven and heck"
"Been to heck and back"
"One heck of a pianist" (well perhaps this one isn't so strange)

But I digress...... grin


ha

A further digression.

"The gates of heck"
"Heck on earth"
"Heck, Michigan"

and ... dare I? ... I dare

"Heck hath no fury like a woman scorned."


I was reading an interesting book about Heckenistic Greece the other day..

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#2030767 - 02/10/13 07:45 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: ando]
BruceD Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 18131
Loc: Victoria, BC
Originally Posted By: ando
Originally Posted By: Old Man
Originally Posted By: carey
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: Old Man


(And I can't believe the software editor just changed "h*ll" to "heck"! mad)



Yeah, that really doesn't make sense. You can say it on TV, but not on PW? Hmmmm...


Consider the possibilities.....

"Go to heck!!"
"Burn in heck"
"When heck freezes over"
"A cold day in heck"
"Heaven and heck"
"Been to heck and back"
"One heck of a pianist" (well perhaps this one isn't so strange)

But I digress...... grin


ha

A further digression.

"The gates of heck"
"Heck on earth"
"Heck, Michigan"

and ... dare I? ... I dare

"Heck hath no fury like a woman scorned."


I was reading an interesting book about Heckenistic Greece the other day..


What did it have to say about Hecken of Troy? smile
_________________________
BruceD
- - - - -
Estonia 190

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#2030862 - 02/11/13 12:05 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: BruceD]
Old Man Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/04/12
Posts: 778
Loc: Michigan, USA
Originally Posted By: BruceD
Originally Posted By: ando
Originally Posted By: Old Man
Originally Posted By: carey
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: Old Man


(And I can't believe the software editor just changed "h*ll" to "heck"! mad)



Yeah, that really doesn't make sense. You can say it on TV, but not on PW? Hmmmm...


Consider the possibilities.....

"Go to heck!!"
"Burn in heck"
"When heck freezes over"
"A cold day in heck"
"Heaven and heck"
"Been to heck and back"
"One heck of a pianist" (well perhaps this one isn't so strange)

But I digress...... grin


ha

A further digression.

"The gates of heck"
"Heck on earth"
"Heck, Michigan"

and ... dare I? ... I dare

"Heck hath no fury like a woman scorned."


I was reading an interesting book about Heckenistic Greece the other day..


What did it have to say about Hecken of Troy? smile

thumb

Is this what we've become?? I think Kreisler's prophecy of several pages ago has finally come to pass.

"...my guess is the thread will go sour soon enough."

Perhaps not quite soon enough.

laugh laugh

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#2031071 - 02/11/13 11:12 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: debrucey]
jdhampton924 Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/13/08
Posts: 1009
Loc: Evansville, Indiana
Originally Posted By: debrucey
"In a civilized society we do not distinguish nor do we discriminate based on religious beliefs, sexual orientation, skin colour ethnicity, age, or gender."

But we do. We shouldn't, but we do. And it's not noble to act as if it doesn't happen as if that were the same as being politically correct. It is still the case that there are very few internationally renowned concert pianists who are black, for example. Whilst no decent person would judge a concert pianist on such a thing, its still an interesting conversation to have about the various social reasons as to why that might be the case.

I can understand why straight people who are either trying too hard to be politically correct or find it an uncomfortable subject would argue that such a conversation about gay pianists is uninteresting and not worth having. I, however, do find it interesting, to think about the various reasons for why there might be a higher percentage than normal of pianists who are gay, if indeed this is the case at all. Being at music college, this does seem to be the case, although I think it is more the case with singers. In my year, 9 out of the 12 tenors are gay. The other years are similar, and friends of mine in other colleges in the country have said that the numbers are similar where they are as well.
Estimates for how much of the general population are gay in some degree vary from 2% to 10% depending on which study you consult. Clearly there is some kind of disparity here. Does nobody think it might be even slightly interesting to pontificate on why this might be?


Your post interested,

When I lived in Chicago, and went to school there it seemed there were two groups. The students from Asia, who were about half of all the pianists and seemed to group together, and Everyone else. In the everyone else category, most of the guys were gay. 8/10 or something like that.

As I finish my undergrad, after my own problems kept me from school for a few years. I now got to school in Central indiana. Out of all the pianist, which is a much more unsegregated group those numbers seem to be in the reverse. In fact here, most of the pianist are ultra conservative people who would prefer to stay at home.

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#2031161 - 02/11/13 01:45 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Mark...]
Rostosky Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/30/11
Posts: 3339
Loc: Lost in cyberspace.in the UK.
Originally Posted By: Mark...
Don't laugh...

I sometimes wonder, if as a straight male I need to find a feminine side in order to bring out a better more musical sound. It's hard to describe.



Unfortunately it is funny that you should say that, because the other day i was just musing the possibility of breast augmentation surgery in both the male and female pianist as a method of not looking at ones hands whilst playing, if ( I mused) the implants were of a suitable size it would indeed be difficult to see ones hands while at the piano and may well be helpful.

The only downside I could think of is that every mouthfull of pie one consumed would have to go "the long way round" from plate to mouth, but saying that , even that may be beneficial in those amongst us that eat to fast anyways?
_________________________


Rise like lions after slumber,in unvanquishable number. Shake your chains to earth like dew
which in sleep has fallen on you. Ye are many,they are few. Shelley

Founder and creator ofRostoskys 13th crystal skull project

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#2031422 - 02/11/13 06:39 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
asthecrowflies Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/11/12
Posts: 122
Loc: London, Cambridge, San Francis...
I'd love to get a poll of the gender & orientation break outs of PW posters. I think we'd find a higher proportion of homos here than in the general public. Much higher.

I think it's funny that some people think that the subject of gay pianists is a prurient one. In fact, I think of it as exactly the opposite - it's a search for identify amongst those of us who seek to understand our place in the world, through the lens of people "like us" whom we respect. Also, to better understand how lucky we are in this day and age, and how fortunate we weren't born in an earlier era. I can't help but think about what it must have been growing up as Van Cliburn, or Pletnev, or Richter, or Glenn Gould. Can't help but think if they channeled their frustrations into their music, and htat helped to take away the pain of being different.

Also Nelson Freire. I wonder, hey, if he were straight, would he still be best buds with Martha? One of my favorite Martha stories is of her and Nelson at a Horowitz performance of the Rach 3, holding hands, enraptured. It conjures a sublime happiness that I can only explain by associating it with my own memories of feeling truly safe in my own skin confiding in a female friend in those tormented teen years. Of course, Martha is a whole 'nother story - she is to many gay male pianists what Cher is to ordinary gays of a certain age. Or Judy. Or Madonna.

Anyway, I know I'm late to the party, and maybe this thread is just dying embers now, but just thought i'd weigh in!


PS. Debrucey. Your largely ignored joke about wiping was the funniest thing I've read in ages. I spit my drink all over my laptop when i read that. Magnificent.
_________________________
Currently working on: Bach Partita 4, English Suite 2, Toccata d-minor, Chopin-op 10/1, Schubert Impromptus

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#2031430 - 02/11/13 06:52 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: asthecrowflies]
JoelW Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/12
Posts: 4828
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: asthecrowflies
PS. Debrucey. Your largely ignored joke about wiping was the funniest thing I've read in ages. I spit my drink all over my laptop when i read that. Magnificent.


That was Fugue14's joke.

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#2031435 - 02/11/13 07:07 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: JoelW]
asthecrowflies Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/11/12
Posts: 122
Loc: London, Cambridge, San Francis...
Originally Posted By: JoelW
Originally Posted By: asthecrowflies
PS. Debrucey. Your largely ignored joke about wiping was the funniest thing I've read in ages. I spit my drink all over my laptop when i read that. Magnificent.


That was Fugue14's joke.


Haha, no, that wasn't the joke, he just was making an analogy... debrucey was too clever by half & turned the analogy on its head.
_________________________
Currently working on: Bach Partita 4, English Suite 2, Toccata d-minor, Chopin-op 10/1, Schubert Impromptus

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#2031472 - 02/11/13 08:43 PM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: GeorgeB]
CWPiano Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/30/08
Posts: 212
I think the subject of society's perception of homosexuals and professions associated with it is something we can't ignore as the impact is very real. Allow me to illustrate with my own experience.

I have mentioned this before in Piano Teachers' Forum that I started piano very late at 17 years old. A main reason for this is because my parents were vehemently against giving me piano lessons despite repeated requests from me. I come from a traditional Indonesian Chinese family and males are traditionally expected to go into 'macho' professions such as doctor, lawyer, engineer, businessman, etc. Music is viewed as a 'sissy' profession because of this skewed belief that males who learn music will turn gay. And a lot of musicians are gay, so it kind of reinforced this point.

So only when I was 17 when I had some savings I started piano lessons. Needless to say, this exasperated my parents to no end. My mother pleaded me to stop learning because she was genuinely afraid I would turn gay. She also said her aerobic mates were making fun of her because she had a son who learns piano and only gays or girls learn piano (I am not making this up). Imagine the bombshell when I told them I wanted to pursue music full time. But well, I soldiered on and along the way I fell in love, married, and now have a son. At least this alleviated their major concern that I was gay, eh.

So, I am wondering after what I had gone through. How many potential musicians out there are denied chance to pursue their dreams because of society's objection. The large number of musicians who are gay, could it be because the straights are denied a chance to study music?


Edited by CWPiano (02/11/13 08:44 PM)
_________________________
Singapore based private teacher specialising in accelerated ABRSM course.
Author of Visual Guides to Scales and Arpeggios.
Visit my website at www.wunadymusicstudio.com

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#2031567 - 02/12/13 12:21 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: asthecrowflies]
Ferdinand Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/23/07
Posts: 943
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: asthecrowflies
I'd love to get a poll of the gender & orientation break outs of PW posters. I think we'd find a higher proportion of homos here than in the general public. Much higher.

I think it's funny that some people think that the subject of gay pianists is a prurient one. In fact, I think of it as exactly the opposite - it's a search for identify amongst those of us who seek to understand our place in the world, through the lens of people "like us" whom we respect. Also, to better understand how lucky we are in this day and age, and how fortunate we weren't born in an earlier era. I can't help but think about what it must have been growing up as Van Cliburn, or Pletnev, or Richter, or Glenn Gould. Can't help but think if they channeled their frustrations into their music, and htat helped to take away the pain of being different.
...

Are you implying that Gould was gay? I don't think he was. Or do you mean just that he grew up being "different"? That is certainly so. However, it's debatable whether someone like Gould "in this day and age" would have a less painful or frustrating experience of growing up compared to decades past.

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#2031572 - 02/12/13 12:24 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: CWPiano]
Whizbang Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/27/12
Posts: 788
Originally Posted By: CWPiano
I think the subject of society's perception of homosexuals and professions associated with it is something we can't ignore as the impact is very real. Allow me to illustrate with my own experience.

...


Geez. A breath of fresh air on this thread.

I think there are most certainly cultural differences. Around the turn of the 20th century, in the US, the piano was definitely view as a girl's instrument--that is, if I'm to believe statements I've read by Gershwin and Morton.

In the US, at least, and to my impression, which may be very flawed, the piano as an instrument no longer has that stigma (say, compared to the flute), though perhaps classical music might. Certainly, music isn't viewed as manly as a pastime as, oh, football, but I never got the sense growing up that it came with a particular effeminate stigma. But I wasn't a part of that music study subculture.

While the plural of anecdote isn't evidence, I find that most of the (predominantly mainland) Chinese people I work with (in tech) want their kids to study an instrument, including piano, regardless of sex.

What, would you posit, is the difference, in this regard, if any, between mainland and HK Chinese culture and Indonesian Chinese culture?
_________________________
Whizbang
amateur ragtime pianist

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#2031614 - 02/12/13 02:39 AM Re: The piano and homosexuality [Re: Whizbang]
theJourney Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/22/07
Posts: 3946
Loc: Banned
Originally Posted By: Whizbang
I think there are most certainly cultural differences. Around the turn of the 20th century, in the US, the piano was definitely view as a girl's instrument--that is, if I'm to believe statements I've read by Gershwin and Morton.

In the US, at least, and to my impression, which may be very flawed, the piano as an instrument no longer has that stigma (say, compared to the flute), though perhaps classical music might. Certainly, music isn't viewed as manly as a pastime as, oh, football, but I never got the sense growing up that it came with a particular effeminate stigma. But I wasn't a part of that music study subculture.


Don't kid yourself. Guitar is cool. Piano not so much.

In what is likely a majority of small town America in the " outlaying rural areas " between the two coasts, classical piano is still definitely seen by the general culture as " gay " , " sissy " or " for girls ". A boy with any kind of social standing might as well put a pink tu tu on and hang a sign on his back " kick me here ".

What has changed is that there are now more kids who, through everything from the fact that the fastest growing religion in the US today is " no affiliation ", mass media changes with from matter-of-fact Will and Grace episodes through Glee through " it will get better " youtube videos, etc. don't feel perhaps as isolated, alone or estranged or suicidal from fear and bullying and outright assault.

http://www.itgetsbetter.org/

On my street in Amsterdam with lots of families and an estimated 30+ maintained pianos in the homes, not one boy has dared to take piano lessons over the past 15 years. Drums yes. Guitar yes. Those are the bold and daring choices. The safe choices of the popular boys? Field Hockey or Soccer. Period.

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