Inspirational Quotes from Daniel Barenboim

Anti-Semitism has no historical, political and certainly no philosophical origins. Anti-Semitism is a disease.

Daniel Barenboim

Controversial means somebody who makes people think. And if you are afraid of people who will be against you, you might as well stay home and do nothing.

Daniel Barenboim

For many people, music is here to let them forget the daily chores of life.

Daniel Barenboim

Music is not a profession. Music is a way of life – one that requires much professionalism.

Daniel Barenboim

Live life to the full, and become more curious every day. The more you find out about life, the richer your music-making will be.

Daniel Barenboim

What the world is saying to us human beings is, ‘Don’t stick to the old ways, learn to think anew.’ And that’s what musicians do every day.

Daniel Barenboim

The problem with listening to music today is that there’s so much of it everywhere. We’ve got used to hearing music without actually listening to it.

Daniel Barenboim

Every great work of art has two faces, one toward its own time and one toward the future, toward eternity.

Daniel Barenboim

Beethoven’s music tends to move from chaos to order, as if order were an imperative of human existence.

Daniel Barenboim

Music means different things to different people and sometimes even different things to the same person at different moments of his life.

Daniel Barenboim

Music is an art that touches the depth of human existence; an art of sounds that crosses all borders.

Daniel Barenboim

Music is very abstract. When we talk about music, we’re not discussing the music itself but rather how we react to it.

Daniel Barenboim

Sound is often talked about in a very subjective way, as if it had a colour. This is a bright sound, this is a dark sound. I don’t believe in that because I think that is much too subjective.

Daniel Barenboim

When playing music, it is possible to achieve a unique sense of peace.

Daniel Barenboim

Playing and listening to music gives you a sense of fulfilment because you have to put everything in you at its disposal.

Daniel Barenboim

I’m one of the ones who believed the Iraq War was a complete mistake from the very beginning.

Daniel Barenboim

When we talk about music, we talk about our reaction to it. One person might say that music is so poetic, while another says it’s all mathematics. Yet another might say it’s about sensuality, and so on. That’s all true. But music is not just one of these things. It’s everything all at once.

Daniel Barenboim

For me personally, Elliott Carter was and remains one of the most meaningful composers of the late 20th and early 21st centuries because he represents substance. He was the living proof of uncompromising, complex music, which at first seems inaccessible. But it becomes accessible if one digs in and sees the development through.

Daniel Barenboim

I am permanently relaxed.

Daniel Barenboim

There is too much employer-employee relationship in America. I wish the musicians would feel that many decisions have to do with them and not delegate everything to management or to the board or to the committee. This is why you get a sense of pride in some of the European orchestras: because they are part of the decision-making.

Daniel Barenboim

The tempo is the suitcase. If the suitcase is too small, everything is completely wrinkled. If the tempo is too fast, everything becomes so scrambled you can’t understand it.

Daniel Barenboim

In the beginning, there was silence. And out of the silence came the sound. The sound is not here.

Daniel Barenboim

There are many types of silence. There is a silence before the note, there is a silence at the end and there is a silence in the middle.

Daniel Barenboim

Tradition demands that we not speak poorly of the dead.

Daniel Barenboim

US presidents can make all the commitments and declarations they want until they are blue in the face, in the Muslim world they will always be perceived as partisan.

Daniel Barenboim

Jewish intellectuals contributed a great deal to insure that Europe became a continent of humanism, and it is with these humanist ideals that Europe must now intervene in the Middle East conflict.

Daniel Barenboim

To have real knowledge, one must understand the essence of things and not only their manifestations.

Daniel Barenboim

In my mother’s belly, I remember not liking the tempi my father played the Beethoven Sonatas in.

Daniel Barenboim

I liked very much when we lived in Hampstead. We would go for walks on the Heath. I liked it better than living in the centre of town.

Daniel Barenboim

It’s funny, because in 1970 I met the Beatles quite by a chance at a party. It was the Beethoven bicentenary, and I was then also playing the Beethoven Sonatas. And that’s all they wanted to hear about – I wanted to talk about them, and all they wanted to talk about was Beethoven.

Daniel Barenboim

There are wonderful restaurants in London. I love Indian food and I like Arab food, and I go very often to the Arab restaurant Noura.

Daniel Barenboim

I have music in my brain all the time, all sorts.

Daniel Barenboim

When you love somebody and they die young and you are young, too, it is very hard.

Daniel Barenboim

I love conducting. What I’m tired of is music administration. I don’t want that. I just want to make music.

Daniel Barenboim

I can’t stand going out to one more dinner with some Mrs. So-and-So who might leave a million dollars to the Chicago Symphony Orchestra when she dies.

Daniel Barenboim

The Barenboim Foundation has nothing to do with politics.

Daniel Barenboim

You can’t expect someone born into a family with no music… to understand when I’m conducting the Schoenberg Variations.

Daniel Barenboim

An hour of violin lessons in Berlin is an hour where you get the child interested in music. An hour in a violin lesson in Palestine is an hour away from violence, is an hour away from fundamentalism.

Daniel Barenboim

I maintain music is not here to make us forget about life. It’s also here to teach us about life: the fact that everything starts and ends, the fact that every sound is in danger of disappearing, the fact that everything is connected – the fact that we live and we die.

Daniel Barenboim

Once you start playing a piece, there is a connection between every note. You cannot say, ‘I will not concentrate on this note.’ You cannot ignore things the way you do in the rest of your life.

Daniel Barenboim

I would like to be a terrorist for music education – to make a complete reform, all over the world.

Daniel Barenboim

It is always interesting and sometimes even important to have intimate knowledge of a composer’s life, but it is not essential in order to understand the composer’s works.

Daniel Barenboim

Beethoven’s importance in music has been principally defined by the revolutionary nature of his compositions. He freed music from hitherto prevailing conventions of harmony and structure.

Daniel Barenboim

Beethoven was a deeply political man in the broadest sense of the word. He was not interested in daily politics, but concerned with questions of moral behaviour and the larger questions of right and wrong affecting the entire society.

Daniel Barenboim

The greatness of a musician is measured by the degree of fanaticism he brings to his playing.

Daniel Barenboim

You used to queue for three days and two nights for tickets for Rubinstein. People stayed in the queue for the whole day.

Daniel Barenboim

In Arab culture, music is for celebration. You don’t play music at funerals.

Daniel Barenboim

The Iranian government still denies the Holocaust – so you can’t take them seriously. And the Israeli government spreads rumours and disinformation about Iran – because it needs to for the creation of panic. I find these theological states – and in this respect, Israel and Iran are twin brothers – very, very dangerous.

Daniel Barenboim

I have loved Elliott Carter’s music for many years.

Daniel Barenboim

When you get to be 103, modernism is a very wide concept.

Daniel Barenboim

I cannot be music director at La Scala and at Staatsoper. This would be unfair to one of the two institutions.

Daniel Barenboim

I used to conduct the last opera in Berlin on Sunday, get on a plane on Monday to Chicago, and start a rehearsal that same night, if it was a performance week.

Daniel Barenboim

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