Twenty years ago, the Colombian city was a center of the worldwide cocaine trade, notorious for gun violence; even ten years ago the place was considered unsafe. Now it’s considered a hotbed of innovation.
General director David Gockley: “Audience surveys made the point: People want to be wowed every time – with singers, conductors, productions, and we have to deliver or die. … So we have bet the ranch that the increased numbers of productions, the diversity of repertory, five new productions (including the massive epic of Les Troyens, which will stretch us to our limits) should recapture subscribers, fill the houses, and produce [additional] contributions.
“Ten years ago, the genre was a major source of intellectual energy on the right, and the site of a publishing boom, with conservative imprints popping up at industry giants like Random House and Penguin. But after a decade of disruption, uneven sales, and fierce competition, many leading figures in the conservative literati fear the market has devolved into an echo of cable news, where an overcrowded field of preachers feverishly contends for the attention of the same choir.”
“The concert I signed up for would showcase 100 people from around the world collaborating live in an electronic, computer-driven concert – like a massive group game of Guitar Hero … ‘Sure,’ I said. ‘What could go wrong?’ … If panic had a language, it would probably be very much like what transpired [in rehearsal] that day.”
“I am looking to meditate on the expansive nature of consciousness through dance, where language, dream states, memory, and willful artifice combine to create a unique form. I am interested in dance outside of its ‘narrative’ potential. … My work embodies a convergence of many ideas, not a paring down to one theme.”
“No one is quite sure how the trend will end up, and whether it will succeed at making money or building audiences. But many music organizations say they believe such web streams will prove helpful, saying that they must find audiences where they are, in an era when sales of CDs and digital downloads are declining, and streaming services like Spotify and Pandora are growing rapidly.”
“I thought that I could wedge/force/hipcheck my way into a position that would reconcile the type of work that I wanted to do with the teaching that I love. But as a friend of mine said [about] her time on the market, ‘academia is drunk’ — not belligerent or irresponsible so much single-sightedly focused on things that may or may not ultimately matter.”
“The to-do list for the decade between ages 10 and 20 includes separating from your parents, finding your place among your peers at school, beginning to make decisions about your own future, and—oh yes—figuring out how to relate to the world, and yourself, as a suddenly and mystifyingly sexual being.”
Where have they all gone ? Today’s music scene seems to be all about being “real”, wearing your heart on your sleeve – Adele, Frank Ocean, Plan B, Drake, Elbow, Emeli Sandé et al would all rather “be themselves” on stage. “I’m like you,” they seem to say, “so buy my records.” But this overly cautious stance is akin to Prince Harry’s efforts to be “one of the lads”. Where’s the drama? The style? Have we lost the art of pretentious performance?