A ♭ is magenta

Photo by Frank Chisari.

Music has been called the great healer. It also has the ability to unite and inspire us, soothe our emotions, and release stress. Linda Chisari, who has lived in Del Mar with her husband, Frank, for four decades, is intimately familiar with music’s power, and has recently written a memoir—The Magic of Music—about the centrality of music in her life.


“Beginning from a very young age, there has been a thread that has connected all my days,” said Chisari, a talented pianist who also had a busy landscape architecture practice. “That thread is music.”


Photo courtesy Del Mar Foundation

For as long as she can recall, Chisari has had perfect pitch and synesthesia, an unusual blending of the senses. With perfect pitch, she can hear any tone—from the hoot of an owl to the chime of a clock—and know instantly whether it’s F# or C. In Chisari’s synesthesia allows her to see specific colors when she hears musical notes. Her favorite colors—magenta and royal purple—are instantly summoned in her mind’s eye whenever she plays, sings or hears the musical keys of Ab or Db.


The onset of her life-long love affair with music began at the age of three, when she was given her first piano. Over the next few decades, she played the piano and took lessons constantly.


“In high school, I finally worked up the courage to tell my parents that I was no longer interested in learning to perform the music that all my friends played,” Chisari recalled. “I wanted to play the intricate melodies, the logical and mathematical chord progressions, the different bass styles and the rhythms of jazz, boogie woogie, ragtime and show tunes.”


Over the years—from her college days to her subsequent years in Del Mar—Chisari continued to play piano tunes both for her and her family’s enjoyment, and used her musical skills to bring people together, whenever she had the opportunity. Over the last few years, under the auspices of Del Mar Community Connections (DMCC)—Chisari sits on the board—she has held a popular musical sing-along at her house. To learn more about Linda Chisari’s life with music and her new book, sign up for the DMCC/Del Mar Library’s Page Turner’s event which will be held on October 26, 2023, via Zoom: www.dmcc.cc/calendar