I sat listening to the Minnesota Orchestra. The soloist played Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto #1 in B flat minor. Wearing a dress covered in bright pink sequins, she played aggressively; as she moved, light bounced off her dress in an ugly glare. I found myself watching her movements and hating the glare from her dress, completely distracted from the music. Why wear this dress, I kept wondering? Does she have any idea how this dress distracts? And then I have my a-hah moment. Why am I looking at her? The glare off the dress annoyed me and yet there are dozens of musicians I could focus on. Or I could simply close my eyes and let the music surround me.
It is a lesson I need to learn and relearn. I can choose where I focus my attention. I can focus on her dress and my annoyance, or I can focus on the music. I chose the music.