The best ensembles create new music, play old music in new ways, and/or help us discover something more about ourselves. In order to do this, we have to think about (though not necessarily understand) how our art fits into the broader world. For me, art is in service to humanity. Achieving the perfect performance can be deeply meaningful to the individual (“Yes! I did it!”) but can have little meaning to no one else if it’s not played for the right audience or in the right context. I’m convinced perfect performances can only happen when we wholly give up ourselves to the moment, to our colleagues, and to our audience. The audience will feel something magical, and we as performers/ organizers are changed.