by Chris Medici
It’s natural to feel trapped in these uncertain times. Whether it’s national politics, a global pandemic or a challenging economy, we live in a world filled with tension, anxiety and unpredictability. This is in addition to whatever may be going on in our individual lives – our job, our relationships, our community. And even though it feels we cannot control or influence the circumstances affecting us, we can control what we do in the midst of this uncertainty.
For me, music is my compass on this journey. It is the path to freedom from the pressures of this life – not a means of avoiding them – but rather a way to express my feelings and channel them into something positive, creative and constructive. Music has been my constant companion, comforting me in difficult times and enhancing the happier times of my life – like the spices I use in my favorite recipes.
I believe we are meant to connect with others, collaborating and encouraging others to evolve and become the best versions of ourselves. I am fortunate that I found a community of people here at Altered Stage that brings out the best in me and encourages me to evolve as a musician and as a person. Altered Stage is not just a place to learn how to play music; it is a way to build and maintain a connection to other people in a world that at times makes me feel like we’re drifting further apart from one another.
As we saw this year, we had to retreat to our homes to minimize exposure to the Coronavirus; however, Altered Stage and its members were still accessible through online instruction and virtual collaborations. There were even social events such as game night and karaoke. And these opportunities continue despite what may lie ahead. I am grateful Altered Stage is available to us here in Chicago and to anyone in the world with internet access. No matter the circumstances, I and others can connect with one another to make music and express whatever is on our minds and in our hearts. This is freedom.