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The point is, art never stopped a war and never got anybody a job. That was never its function. Art cannot change events. But it can change people. It can affect people so that they are changed...because people are changed by art - enriched, ennobled, encouraged - they then act in a way that may affect the course of the way they vote, they behave, the way they think.

                                        - Leonard Bernstein

If we are really serious about communicating with one another, about knowing ourselves through our neighbors -- in short, about peaceful civilization -- then we can never overestimate the good that comes from artistic communication. When we touch one another through music, we are touching the heart, the mind, and the spirit, all at once.

                                        - Leonard Bernstein

Art exists not to make you feel good about yourself, but to make you deal with yourself, which is good for you.

                                        - Nicholas Payton

Go into the arts. I'm not kidding. The arts are not a way to make a living. They are a very human way of making life more bearable. Practicing an art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow, for heaven's sake. Sing in the shower. Dance to the radio. Tell stories. Write a poem to a friend, even a lousy poem. Do it as well as you possibly can. You will get an enormous reward. You will have created something.

                                        - Kurt Vonnegut