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For decades, either once or twice a year, I would give my students an exercise. I would play an assortment of musical selections (all without lyrics, or varying styles--list upon request), turn down the lights, and require them to write a story or description or whatever that seemed to them to go with the music (for the literal minded, I would say that this was a movie soundtrack and they were writing the movie that went with it). Couldn't be right or wrong, but once they took a few seconds to come up with an idea, they had to keep writing until that piece of music stopped. They would start reluctantly, but it was generally a hit.

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