The MUSIC ROOM…a Child’s Escape
When I was ten years old our family lived in a 13 room, 3 story Victorian house in Wellesley, Massachusetts. The home was nowhere near as elaborate as it sounds. Seven of us lived there...my four older sisters and my parents, and we actually rented out two rooms (made into a very small apartment) to a local schoolteacher to make ends meet. It was a very “lived-in” abode with hand-me-down furniture and an air of hectic fun and chaos. This was true of all the rooms with the exception of one.
We called it the “Music Room” and it was my favorite, especially in the wintertime, when the doors were closed tight (to save on heating) and the room became my private, if somewhat chilly, land of make believe.
I used to sneak into the shivery half-darkness...a braided and scrubbed ten-year old hugging my arms tightly around me. I never turned on the lights. no matter how dark the winter’s day, and I would always sit in the same place...perched high in the exact middle of an austere Victorian loveseat.
Like the afternoon shadows my eyes would seek out the objects in the room. The piano dominated the area, covering half the wall and wide enough to carry a Tiffany lamp, 3 stacks of sheet music, a violin and a clarinet atop it’s paisley shawl. It was the most ornate piano I have ever seen, each piece of wood carved and set into the gigantic black body. Even the legs were knobbed and curled into immense pedestals sturdy enough to carry the weight.
The rest of the objects in the room vied with the piano...the marble table tops turning pink from the reflection of the peach colored wallpaper, the leather book covers, the frosted light globe hanging by a “gold” chain and, best of all…two Victorian side chairs, my little “fat ladies” stuffed into flowered brocade, the dark scrolled wood curving into shoulders, short arms jutting at either side and the legs planted firmly apart on the floor.
When I was in the “Music Room” the everyday hustle and bustle of the rest of the house disappeared. I became a grand lady, a princess, at peace in my serene and elegant world. I would give a slight nod to the piano...my imaginary recital was about to begin !