Musicians the world over spoke up against the persecution of Pussy Riot, who have been jailed for staging an anti-Putin gig in a church. Sir Paul McCartney appealed for their release. Madonna voiced her protest. Prominent Russian musicians have expressed revulsion.
All of them popular musicians.
From the classical music community, not a peep has been heard. You might expect silence from Valery Gergiev and Ana Netrebko who joined the election-rigging president’s re-election band-waggon. But there are plenty of independent-minded conductors and soloists and singers in Russia and none of them has stood up to show solidarity with three young women who have been denied basic human rights of free speech and a fair trial.
It’s not too late to show that classical music has as much of a conscience as pop.