Who are you?
I’m Stephen J. Trygar. I currently reside in Philadelphia, but I was born and raised in Lake Ariel, Pennsylvania (if you have no idea where that is… probably for the best…). I graduated from Marywood University in 2016 with my Bachelor of Music in Music Performance degree and from Temple University in 2019 with my Master of Music in Music History degree. Between degrees, I lived in Atlanta, but that’s neither here nor there.
So, who am I really? Well, for starters, music is about 75% of my life. I’m always listening to something, even if it’s just playing in the back of my mind. Whether its streaming in through headphones or blasting over the large speakers in my apartment, you can probably guess I’m listening to some piece within the classical music genre. I also like to read and collect books: non-fiction, fiction, fantasy, sci-fi, self-help, biography, etc. … If you were to ask my parents what I was like as a child, rest assured, they would somehow mention that I carried a book around with me no matter where we were or where we were going. I still kind of do that, but it’s just in my backpack instead of in my hand. Once and a while, if I’m not at work, writing, reading, or cooking, I’ll indulge in a video game or watch some kind of TV show with my fiancé.
If you’re a musician by trade, why do you write so much?
While I do have a degree that says I can play the trumpet, and occasionally the piano, I also have a degree that says I can talk and write about whatever aspect of music I want. Growing up, I’ve always slightly desired to be a writer. Even my 8th grade yearbook says so. So here I am! I’m putting my two biggest passions in life together.
Ultimately, I just really want to share that passion with those who care to take the journey with me. Music has been important in trillions of people’s lives for as far back in human history as we can go. It was all meant to be heard and shared no matter what its original function was. I’m not writing with the mindset that this is for a select group of people or for the cultural elite. I’m writing for everybody. All art should be easily accessible, so that’s why I’m here.
What should I expect from your writings?
You shouldn’t claim to dislike art just because you don’t understand it or because it seems intimidating. Listen, I can understand if you don’t like a certain genre of music because you don’t find it entertaining, but if you haven’t even tried to give it a moment of your time, that’s just a poor excuse. That’s why I’m here. I’m here to break down the music and make it tangible, accessible, and more relevant to our current culture. An opera by Mozart or a ballet by Tchaikovsky can seem old and stale, but are they really? They present the same cultural issues that we face today, so the only real difference is how it sounds. I love art and culture too much to watch people turn up their nose to something they don’t understand. I hope that, through my passion, I can bring some clarity and even some inspiration to you.
All art is subjective. I’d never tell anybody that they’re wrong for something they like or dislike. Why? I don’t like when people tell me that. So, why should I do the same? Of course I love to write about my own opinions on the music I’m writing about, but there will come times when I don’t actually enjoy a piece that I may be writing about. For example, I may really enjoy one John Williams film score, but that doesn’t mean I have to like every one.
Where can I find your writing?
First and foremost, you can find a great amount of my writing in my articles on this blog. It’s the easiest way for me to get my thoughts and advice out into the world without forcing you to pay for anything. Occasionally a post will be for subscribers only, and those will be available on my Patreon page! I’ll refrain from promoting my subscription on this portion of the website, but if you ever want to get more content, become a subscriber!
Yes, I’m also an author! A few volumes of my anthology Tales of Love, Loss, Magic, and Reality: Setting the Stage for Opera and Ballet are already published and available as eBooks. While there are currently no physical books yet, that will certainly come with a little more time. With every three or four completed eBooks, a hardcover copy will be designed. This anthology’s main goal is to retell the stories told in operas and ballets while giving you enough history and musical knowledge to enhance your experience if you ever decide to spend a night in the theater (sorry… not on Broadway…).
I don’t just write for my own products. I run a second blog for my job, and I also write when I am contracted to by outside sources. I have written and lectured for Opera Philadelphia and the Academy of Vocal Arts thus far in my career, and I look forward to many more of these opportunities.
How do I get notified when you publish more content?
The answer is simple: sign up for email updates below! If you decide you want to do more than that, consider being a subscriber!
Can I find you on social media?
Of course! I don’t live in a cave with no access to the internet. Please be sure to add me on any social media platform I’m on (plus some bonuses)!
How can I get in contact with you?
If you need to contact me, please visit my contact page. I do read all emails, but I am not always able to answer them. Please follow the guidelines when attempting to reach out to me.