This exercise is refreshing. In this exercise, we will be listening to a concerto. You can calibrate how hard this exercise is according to how familiar the work is and how long it is. Search terms may include ‘composer’ and the name of the country. When you have listened to the work, listen to it again three times in the same week. A suitable duration for this exercise is 20 to 40 min.
1. Select an instrument that you like or an instrument not familiar to you. Listen to a concerto for that instrument (e.g. ‘violin concerto’). Concertos usually have three movements. Listen to them all. You can also do this exercise in parts.
2. Think of a building that you remember well. Find a composer from the country in which that building is located. Listen to a concerto or another work by that composer.
1. Adjust the volume so that it allows for great variations in volume. Note that in symphonic works the dynamic range is broad and that this is an important feature of the music. Avoid background noise, because that tempts you to turn up the volume too high. Remember to be careful about your ears, especially if you’re using earpods.
2. Write down the composers and their works that you’ve listened to. By doing this, you will compile a listening diary that you can return to.
3. A familiar work is often easier to listen to. Listen to a work several times to become familiar with it.
4. Feel your mood. Listening is easier on some days than others. Sometimes listening is best done when doing quiet chores, but at other times it’s a good idea to stop everything and just listen. Even if you can’t focus only on listening, listen anyway.