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Why Memphis Matters to Every American Orchestra


  1. It is a wonderful way for orchestras to personally outreach within their communities on a broader line than the educational concerts and some visits to schools. This sounds more comprehensive. It may also depend on the way schools and community organizations are set up in various cities–all may not be the same, so this approach would need to be flexible and tweaked based on the educational, corporate and community needs. Quite a fine concept, though. Similarly, when we as visiting guest artists go to these cities, it should be expected that we do the same. In the 1980s and early 1990s, as a pianist, I participated in the Xerox Pianists Program through Affiliate Artists, which brought us as close into the communities as possible–hospitals, prisons, schools, corporations (lunch time ‘Informances’), master classes, recital, chamber music etc.

  2. Here from Greg Sandow’s blog:
    In other words, the “orchestra” is no longer working as a group of 100 silent obedient people responsible for realizing one person’s vision of the music (the conductor), but is instead a community of active musicians.
    I don’t know how many of the biggies will go for it … nor how many will need to. There’s probably always going to be a niche for the “100 people in penguin suits playing Mahler” or whatever. (I say this with affection; I’m from Phila, and we’re a bit patriotic toward our orchestra and the idea of old-world Culchah.)
    Bit the orchestra itself is, I think, more under siege as no longer sustainable than “classical music” itself. I’m not sure what people mean when they say “classical music” is in trouble, when what they seem to mean is that the 19th century model of the symphony orchestra is in trouble. But an awful lot of good concert, theater, and art music was written before that model got off the ground.
    I guess I’m just saying that I don’t think it’s a pressing question for the future of “classical music” so much as for the future of the symphony orchestra model of delivery …
    Enough of my blather.

  3. This could turn into work not associated with music at all. This concept is not new and has been tried in the past with programs such as music in the schools etc, however this usually involves public money and is the first thing to be cut.
    Institutional image marketing is the key. It’s all about associations and relate-ability. We must find new ways to create the image and sell it. We live in an Idol worship society. Celebrity endorsements are a good start. There must be more than the music. It’s an Aura of excitement that must be present and promoted in many ways such as romantic,philosophical,mysterious,organic etc

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