Gilmore Girls, Notationgate, and Harvardgate

In light of the recent heated discussions following Charlotte Gill’s article on musical notation and theory, which have come to be known as #notationgate, and the wider discussions about the removal of music theory as a core subject at Harvard University, I was very happy when my wife Lindsay pointed out to me that this subject actually featured in Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life, a 2016 sequel to the 2000-7 series. In this section, journalist Rory Gilmore goes back to her private school, and tells the assembled crowd the following:

We all have our proclivities, right? The things we loved before Chilton, the subjects we wanted to study. I had them. Literature, history. And I absorbed them. But with time, I discovered that it’s the stealth subjects, the ones I discovered while I was here, that really expanded my mind the most. I love music. So I thought, ‘I’ll take a music course. Composition and theory. How hard could it be?’ Well…. [laughs]….it was a struggle. Let’s put it that way. I had this notion that somehow my extensive familiarity with Nick Cave, and Radiohead, and a smattering of Stravinsky destined me for success. So I’ll never forget the day that I realized my composition class required composing. But I did it. I composed the melody, I added the harmonies, I drew those treble and bass clefs, I wrote those whole notes, those half notes, those quarter notes, those rest stops, and while you’ll never witness a public performance of my composition, because of that experience, I can see music when I hear it. I only ever heard it before. And I’ll always be grateful for that.

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2 Comments on “Gilmore Girls, Notationgate, and Harvardgate”

  1. Bird Lover says:

    Right, so now Rory Gilmore’s composing is reduced to this:
    “I composed the melody, I added the harmonies, I drew those treble and bass clefs, I wrote those whole notes, those half notes, those quarter notes, those rest stops, and while you’ll never witness a public performance of my composition”
    That’s like painting being likened to mixing some primary colours, adding a background and foreground.

    “you’ll never witness a public performance of my composition”
    That’s obvious.

    Poor academic parrots.

  2. Bird Lover says:

    “Notationgate”

    Funny to see how the poor mainstream academics are going looney, when someone states something that does not conform to the mainstream.

    What mainstream am I talking about. Let me quote Rory on that:
    “melody, I added the harmonies, I drew those treble and bass clefs, I wrote those whole notes, those half notes, those quarter notes, those rest stops”.

    The mainstream is so obsessed with literal outer measurable facets (boxed content), and seeing them as truth, that they cannot even fathom anything else…

    Maby we should actually be taking about brainwash-gate: how the academics are being brainwashed and freely brainwash themselves.
    Let’s call it “Desiring progress…”, right.


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