Black-tie splendour

I’m using the British spelling in honor of my hosts at Cambridge University.

And of course I’m talking about what the male participants will be wearing, in the debate I’m taking part in, in Cambridge on Thursday, May 12, under the sponsorship of the Cambridge Union Society. But the content is surely more important than the dress. What we’ll debate is the relevance of classical music to young people. I’ll be arguing that it isn’t relevant — or, at least, not without extensive changes. Go here for details.

But then my loyal readers surely know that’s what I think. They know, too, that I’m not saying that classical music is doomed, or that younger people will never listen to it. I’ll be making my usual points — that classical music has drifted far from the mainstream of our culture, that it’s not surprising that younger people (and older people, too, for that matter) don’t find it compelling, and that none of this will change until classical music changes.

The debate will be streamed, and you can watch it live at 7 PM British time on the 12th, at  www.cus.org. Which means 3 PM, US Eastern time. Note that we in the east are only four hours behind them right now, instead of five, because we’re on daylight savings time, and they aren’t. (Those in other time zones, in the US and internationally, can make appropriate adjustments.) 

The stream will be archived, they tell me, and should be available at the same address a few days after the debate. 

I’m looking forward to this greatly, and after the debate will spend a few days hanging out in London, meeting people and checking out some musical things. 

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