Sunday, March 01, 2020
John Adams: I Still Dance
Hans Werner Henze: Ariosi
Saturday, February 08, 2014
What is avant-garde music? ".... music which is thought by critics to be ahead of its time, i.e., containing unique or original elements, or unexplored fusions of different genres".
- Magnus Lindberg's oeuvre is quite unique. His latest pieces do not sound avant-garde, but structurally maybe they are. His objective, anti-romantic, Stravinsky-like style sets him apart in today's scene.
- Reinbert de Leeuw's recent 'Der nächtliche Wanderer' is difficult to pint-point (although comparisons to apparently remote peers, such as Cristóbal Halffter or Henri Dutilleux or even Leif Segerstam, come to mind). That could make him a new kind of avant-garde composer.
- Spectralism in music is no longer avant-garde.
- Ensembles such as ASKO|Schönberg, specialising in avant-garde music, should perhaps expand their focus to include avant-garde music of all ages.
Friday, February 07, 2014
Classical music is facing a crisis. How can orchestras and ensembles cope?
First, which are the problems?
- Less attention for classical music in general and in schools in particular - the result of government policies.
- Economic crisis, leading governments to cut subsidies.
- The internet requires new business models.
When it comes to solutions, funding is an obvious first:
- Extra performances, provided the marginal costs are limited.
- Try to attract new audiences (without alienating existing ones).
- Increase income per listener (subscriptions, donations, CD sales, memorabilia, etc.).
- New subscription services.
- Serve children.
The internet forces orchestras and ensembles to redefine what they do:
- Hang on to core values (live performance, focus on specific genres) only.
- Follow your audience, looking for internet delivery (such as The Digital Concert Hall from the Berlin Philharmonic).
- Move away from specific windows (i.e. live performance) and make music available on demand. This could range from providing CD recordings of concerts, provided immediately afterwards. Other options: (internet) radio, streaming, YouTube live, YouTube channel, digital TV channel, Medici.tv.
- Build apps (e.g. NY Philharmonic, London PO, Detroit SO).
- Broaden the repertory.
Broadening the repertory:
- For instance, don't focus on avant-garde in a traditional sense, but on avant-garde music of all ages.
- Actively sollicit new music from any composer (a la Ensemble intercontemporain), instead of ordering new pieces from specific composers.
- Orchestrations of chamber music.
- Reductions of orchestral pieces for ensemble (e.g. Verein für Musikalische Privataufführungen, Elmer Schönberger, Eberhard Kloke, David Matthews, Andreas Tarkmann).
- Newsletter (email).
- Sponsoring (friends of the orchestra).
- Social media (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, blogs, SoundCloud, Spotify).
- Ambassadors (celebrities, politicians, corporate leaders).
- Engage friended international established musicians.
- Concerts, full season tickets.
- Supporters (friends).
- Soloists paying the orchestra for accompaniment (2-sided business model).
- New services to develop with peer ensembles (ASKO|Schönberg, Ensemble intercontemporain, Ensemble Modern, London Sinfonietta, MusikFabri/k etc.).
- Orchestra + ensemble concerts for pieces such as Britten - War Requiem, Dutilleux - Second Symphony, Escher - Summer rites at noon, Stockhausen - Gruppen etc.
- Multi-discipline concerts across different art forms (cf. AAA-series at the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra).
Concerts for children:
- Don't just let the kids come to you, but ensembles can visit schools.
- Don't underestimate children. Wouldn't it be cool to confront them with Georg Friedrich Haas - In vain?
Sunday, December 11, 2011
YouTube has become a valuable source of historic recordings. There are several channels that are worthwhile checking out. If you combine them with a YouTube-to-MP3 conversion site, you can burn your own CDs, with pretty decent 128 kbps sound quality.
Here are some channels:
Here are some channels:
- http://www.youtube.com/user/WatchBlueSkies: uploads from East German LPs from the 60s through 80s, not re-isseud on CD mostly. Music by e.g. Ernst Hermann Meyer, Christfried Schmidt, Paul-Heinz Dittrich, Guenter Kochan, Siegfried Koehler, Johann Cilensek, Rudolf Wagner-Regeny, Gerhard Rosenfeld, Joerg Herchet, and many others.
- http://www.youtube.com/user/TheWelleszCompany: miscellaneous 20th and 21st century music.
- http://www.youtube.com/user/stanchinsky: same
- http://www.youtube.com/user/ch252525: same
- http://www.youtube.com/user/NewMusicXX: same
- http://www.youtube.com/user/ViewerNotes: same
For the conversion to MP3, you can use different sites, such as:
- http://www.youtube-mp3.org/: maximum length 20 minutes
- http://www.vidtomp3.com/index.php: make sure you set it to 'High Quality'
- http://www.video2mp3.net/: sometimes offers 256 kbps rates
All that's left to do, is burn to a CD using Windows Media Player, which will automatically convert MP3 to the standard CD format.
Wednesday, March 09, 2011
The Hague based Residentie Orkest will perform Dmitri Shostakovitch's Symphony No. 10 at the Lowlands popfestival in August 2011. And the Royal Concertgebouworkest has unveiled its 2011/12 programs, including the modern AAA series, which is aimed at drawing a new and young crowd. There will be a few world premieres, but focus is still on the first half of the 20th century. Included are Edgard Varese's Ameriques and Magnus Lindberg's Kraft.
The people in The Hague and Amsterdam have made some very good programming decisions.
Here's a recommendation for an encore: Alexander Mossolov's The Iron Foundry.
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
Sunday, October 25, 2009
Agent faces jail for stealing £½m from Queen's composer
The former agent of the Master of the Queen's Music was today facing jail for swindling more than half a million pounds from the composer's account after allegedly becoming a gambling addict.
Monday, September 08, 2008
Peter Eötvös newest compositions:
- Seven, a violin concerto: UK premiere at the Proms by Akiko Suwanai and the Philharmonia Orchestra conducted by Susanna Mälkki (musicOMH, Financial Times, Telegraph, This Is London, Times).
- Levitation, for two clarinets, accordion and strings: World premiere February 13, 2008, at the Festival de Música de Canarias by its dedicatees, Sabine and Wolfgang Meyer, and Sakari Oramo conducting the Finnish YLE Radion sinfoniaorkesteri (Schott).
- Lady Sarashina (expansion of As I Crossed a Bridge of Dreams), an opera (Financial Times, Guardian).
- Love and other demons, an opera after Gabriel García Márquez: Premiered at Glyndebourne (Financial Times, Telegraph, Independent, Times).
Toshio Hosokawa has been commissioned by pharmaceutical company Roche to write a new piece, to be performed at the 2010 Lucerne Festival. This will be the fifth Roche Commission (Hays Pharma, Nieuwsbank, Roche).