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Infants at the Piano

LOUIS C. ELSON.

If there is anything that can turn the milk of human kindness sour in the bosom of the mildest of musicians, it is to have the children at the summer hotel get at the innocent, unoffending piano, and bang out explosive and incoherent sounds, or to see a nursemaid take an infant to the instrument, that it may amuse itself by smiting discords with its baby fists. It might as well be remembered, in this connection, that no child is too young to catch the idea that pleasant sounds can be evoked from the piano, and even a year-old baby is not too young to produce them. If, instead of allowing babies to smash away at the keys, they were taught to strike single tones, and afterward thirds or sixths, they would not enjoy their noise machine any less and would take a long stride toward their later musical appreciation. I repeat the important fact: No child is too young to appreciate consonance and to prefer it to dissonance.

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