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June 19, 2007

More Reader Contributions

by Douglas McLennan

Why does Classical music have to stay the way it is now? Did we really approach and reach the 'best and final' stage for classical music? Is introspective listening REALLY the best format? Perhaps Greg and others (and I myself) simply hope for another revolution; another change in the way we approach the performing arts. If the Romantics were allowed to do it, I'm sure we can too. read more
- Eric Lin

Your "real world" is no more or less real than the world of classical music. Whatever portion of the culture you're holding up as an example--I don't care if it's pop, or jazz, or steampunk, or politics, or investment banking, or haute cuisine, or motocross enthusiasts--is its own construct, the rules, codes, and boundaries fashined over time by its participants. Dylan's great stuff, but saying that it's somehow more "real" than a Beckett play, or a Beethoven quartet, or even a Jerry Bruckheimer movie is merely a statement that you subjectively find whatever stylistic trappings or semiotic signals associated with that particular subculture to effectively communicate a sense of "authenticity" that's personally satisfying. read more
- Matthew

The more I read these posts and forums and symposia, it strikes me ever more forcefully that the solutions to these problems are local. What works in Chicago will fall flat in Pittsburgh, and vice versa. Audience priorities, levels of experience and engagement, and flat-out dedication are all different from city to city, market to market. At any rate, Messiaen will get a different crowd here than he will in Pittsburgh. What this means is that attempting to find solutions that will work across the board, across the nation is like trying to navigate Chicago's El with a New York subway map: Sure, they both use trains and travel on tracks and have color-coded signage, but the similarities end there. read more
- Marc Geelhoed

We've tried for too long to fill the music education gap with kiddie concerts, ensembles in the schools, etc. That's all valuable, but it does not have the impact of a regular course of study taught in the classroom. The federal government cannot do this for us. We must organize locally, bring local political pressure to bear on school boards, and run our own candidates for school board positions. read more
- James Hopkins

The arts have more than enough arguments to justify increased government funding support - benefits to the economy, to civic life, to education, to tourism, etc. etc. What the arts don't have is any organized, political muscle that would allow them to lobby effectively. As a special interest group (and in the overall scheme of politics, that is what the arts are - a special interest group - no more, no less), whether or not the arts succeed at winning greater government support has little to do with how you "justify" what you want, and everything to do with whether or not you have political clout. read more
- Barry Hessenius

Posted by mclennan at June 19, 2007 11:58 PM


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