Perhaps (I think so) it’s just a legend. But how many times have you musicians heard about this fantastic legend that classical music make you more intelligent?
Let’s go back to when this legend (or maybe not) began.
We are talking about 1993 (let’s not make it seem too old this date, because I was already 3 years old!). According to the two researchers, listening to Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Sonata in D major for two pianos (KV 448) would have caused a temporary increase in the cognitive abilities of a group of volunteers.
Thirty-six students were divided into three groups and subjected to three different listening conditions: the first group listened to easy listening music, the second to a Mozart sonata, while the third remained immersed in silence. Immediately after listening the three groups were subjected to the “Stanford-Binet”, a test of intelligence on spatial reasoning. The results were surprising: the group that had listened to Mozart before the test scored on average ten points higher than the others. (you can find my great source here)
The studies continued and in 1998 an authoritative study conducted in the Department of Psychology of Wisconsin showed that in fact Mozart’s music temporarily increased the space-time intelligence.
We can therefore say that the studies conducted so far show that listening to Mozart’s music, in particular that of the compositions K488 and K448, does increase intelligence, but only temporarily and in particular the effect concerns that temporal space, therefore the analysis of the forms, of the position of the objects in space and the development of the sense of orientation, thus proving particularly useful for painters and surgeons. (so I’m sorry but if you’re not a painter or a surgeon is useless! lol)
This “Mozart effect”, however, actually disappears after less than 15 minutes.
So, if you don’t have a test, an exam, an audition, an exercise, of only 15 minutes, you’ll have to listen to a loop Mozart until you will puke.
To say that, simply listening to classical music strengthens our cognitive abilities may be wrong.
But guys don’t worry because there is something true about it!
What certainly helps to refine our brain is playing an instrument (I still have to understand why I am not a genius playing more than one instrument, but let’s be): who plays has finer minds and is able to notice and correct errors faster than non-musicians.
Even singing is good for our brain (for those who do not know, the voice is also an instrument!), especially choral singing. Research confirms that our body releases endorphins and oxytocin during activity, which help create a sense of well-being in us.
So I believe (personal opinion) that it is the well-being we feel listening to a musical genre that creates those brain interactions that make us do things with more intelligence.
What do you say, do you agree?
Does classical music make you smarter?
Let me know with a comment!