This is the 31st chapter of the 32-part video series “The Montana Ethic Project.” This chapter features Ilse Mari-Lee, the dean of the Honors College at Montana State University in Bozeman and a concerto soloist, recitalist and chamber musician, talking about on “Music: An Integral Part in the Lives of Montanans.” You can watch the whole video below. Here is an edited transcript of how it begins:
“Hello. I’m Ilse Mari-Lee. I’ve lived in Montana longer than anywhere else in my life actually. I’ve been here for 22 years now after I moved from South Africa, where I was born. I love Montana because of the high plains and the open skies and, you know, maybe the Dutch people in Manhattan resonate with me. If I go to their farmers market they look like my cousins!
“But today I would like to talk to you about the power of music.”
Here is another, edited excerpt from Mari-Lee’s presentation:
“We know that music can uplift, and music can make you feel good, and music can bring you to tears, and music can be the soundtrack of your life in many, many ways. But now we are beginning to understand what music can do as an educational tool. The statistics are out there. Rather than have me bore you with numbers, just go to the Music Educators National Conference website and look at the statistics at what will happen if a student has the opportunity to take music in school. Suddenly their SAT and ACT scores will sky rocket. It’s just incredible what a gift it is to the development of the brain, of critical thinking, firing across both hemispheres of the brain, with music.
“Nothing else can do it like music. Music provides the enjoyment of actually living in a piece of art. You don’t have to go to a museum to experience Beethoven, you go to the symphony orchestra, you listen to it on you mp3, or you play it on your cello. You experience the art. This is very important. We know that music can uplift. We know that it has great benefits intellectually in the development of our students. As stewards of the land and as stewards of the future generations of Montanans, please don’t let that fall away in your school district.”
PERC—the Property & Environment Research Center—is a proud sponsor of the Montana Ethic Project. To learn how PERC’s ideas can help us honor one another’s rights to land, water, and wildlife,visit perc.org.
First week: Project introduction.
Third week: Mike Gear on “The Value of Athletics.”
Fourth week: Franke Wilmer on “Gender Equity.”
Fifth week: Gordon Brittan on “The Founding Fathers.”
Eighth week: Chuck Tooley on “The Montana Character.”
Ninth week: Steve Bullock on “Citizens United v. Montana.”
11th week: Bob Rowe on Technological Development.”
13th week: Bruce Smith on “Montana’s Food Economy.”
21st week: Pat Barkey on “The Montana Wage Disparity.”
23rd week: Larry Simkins on “The Culture of Safety.”
24th week: James Shanley on “Education Reform.”
25th week: Greg Gianforte on “High Tech in Montana.”
27th week: Timothy James Lecain on “An Ethical Nature?”
28th week: Steve Running on “Montana Climate Change.”
30th week: Bob Quinn on “Is it Time for GM Wheat?”
Next week: Michael Sexson on “Mythic Montana: The Last and the Best.”