Seeing the future (again)

It’s hard for me to go to the annual Bang on a Can marathon, as I did yesterday, and not get impatient with the classical music world.

We talk and talk,.and talk and talk, about finding a new young audience, and there — at the marathon, in the Winter Garden in downtown New York, a big and friendly space where palm trees grow (tall ones) — was that very audience, more than a thousand people, sitting happily, listening to new music of many kinds. including, while I was there, one 40-minute piece (Fausto Romitelli’s Professor Bad Trip) that would have driven a mainstream classical crowd screaming into the street. They would have called it horrible noise. But these people roared for it. I liked it, too.

So let’s just admit it. The new audience is there. And — without disparaging the Tchaikovsky-loving people that the classical world mostly caters to — it’s time for even big mainstream classical music institutions to learn who this new audience is, why they mostly won’t come to Tchaikovsky concerts, and what a fabulous shot in the artistic arm it would be for the classical music world to start doing concerts for them.

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on RedditEmail this to someone

Comments

  1. says

    As someone that would gladly spend money to hear a concert that included some of last night’s music at Carnegie Hall or Avery Fisher rather than another Beethoven or Tchaikovsky performance (not that there’s anything wrong with them!), it was a great and fun time. It was a good diverse audience (young and old, not necessarily racially though) and all excited to hear this music with no name. If you are really interested what I and many of the other the new music audience had to say about the music check out Twitter and search #boac. Great reading…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>