Saturday, November 23, 2013


Sting, performing "Mack the Knife" at a benefit for the experimental theater LaMaMa on Thursday night:

Notice that he has the excellent posture of a classical guitarist. That even looks like a 19th century guitar.

How to destroy an orchestra.

New music and its audiences.

Of course the thing to realize is that the problem with new music and its lack of an audience probably has more to do with ideology than the music itself. Mozart and Haydn strove to please and entertain their listeners above all and their music still has a lot of listeners. New music composers are seeking new, experimental sounds and don't have much of an audience.

Speaking of pleasing the listeners, the biggest-earning musician of 2013 was...

wait for it...


I can't quite figure out what is pleasing about Madonna's music or stage show--or anyone else on the list for that matter--but I guess that's just me. (Thanks to a commentator for sending me that link.)

How to destroy music education.

How to get to Carnegie Hall? Practice, practice, practice! Just don't do it at home.

Hmm, well all that was a bit pessimistic, wasn't it? So let's end with something up. The second movement of Haydn's Symphony No. 94 in G major:


Rickard Dahl said...

Yeah, lots of (only) pessimistic articles, didn't read them though as I'm pretty tired right now. The videos included in the new music article clearly show why the audience is very small. Speaking of new music, I found this:

It's somewhat unconventional but it's purposely humourous.

Anyways, since the topic is miscellanea: Yesterday I've listened to a live performance of Britten's War Requiem. Really amazing piece in many ways and really amazing to hear live. Britten (and also Shostakovich) wrote very meaningful music during a time when extreme-modernism was seen as the ideal.

Bryan Townsend said...

I saw a remarkable performance of Britten's War Requiem in London many years ago. But I don't think I have listened to it since. Perhaps I should write a post on it...