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A roundup of news and opinion in the industry. If you’d like to add your voice to the listings we choose each week, please don’t hesitate to send us a note.

 
       
       
 
Feature

MUSIC AND (SOCIAL/CULTURAL) RESILIENCE

Resilience is in the bloodstream of people of African descent in the Caribbean. And it is no coincidence that Caribbean musical genres such as reggae and bomba inspire such joy in those who listen to, play, and dance to it.

 
  RESEARCH AND OPINION  
 


Three Reasons to Abolish the NEA—And Why They’re Wrong
Dance Magazine: Jennifer Stahl
The writer responds to the following arguments: It’s a waste of taxpayer dollars, the arts should be funded by private donors, the arts can’t be a priority when so much else is at stake.

I Read A Book About Brahms And All I Got Was This Obsession With Clara Schumann
The AWL: Classical Music Hour with Fran
The Schumanns are often recognized as a power couple of the time — your Beyoncé and Jay-Z, your William H. Macy and Felicity Huffman, you get it. For a long time, it was easy to overlook Clara Schumann; Robert was the composer of them, really, and she was just the performer. But that’s wrong! It’s extremely wrong!

The New Music Paradox, Part 2: Lessons from the Front Lines

San Francisco Classical Voice: Jim Farber
How has noncommercial new music suddenly become hip? “One reason why,” says Deborah Borda,” the L.A. Philharmonic’s president and CEO, “is that contemporary music is not nearly as doctrinaire as it used to be.

Gary, Indiana Mayor: Can Art Save a City? Here's our Creative Answer

Fox News: Karen Freeman-Wilson
People often ask me what is the most difficult aspect of rebuilding Gary. It is without a doubt getting people to believe in our city again. When we see projects like ArtHouse come to life, we have every reason to believe that Gary can recapture its place in the heartland.

Was the First Song a Lullaby?

Pacific Standard: Tim Jacobs
Two Harvard University researchers put forward an intriguing hypothesis.

Entrepreneur of the Month: Steve Houghton

Project Jumpstart
Steve Houghton exemplifies the power of versatility in an ever-changing artistic world. While he is consistently working and producing his own artistic material, Houghton is also always thinking of new ways to teach that reflect the current musical climate.

 
  NATIONAL  
 


Lincoln Center’s 11 Arts Groups in Harmony: Save the N.E.A.
NY Times: Michael Cooper
There have been times in years past when Lincoln Center’s 11 constituent arts groups were better known for infighting than cooperation, but on Tuesday they banded together to release an unusual joint statement urging the federal government to save the National Endowment for the Arts.

The Stone, an Influential Music Space, to Move to the New School

NY Times: Zachary Woolfe
The Stone, a tiny but influential performance space that has been a fixture of the New York experimental music scene since it opened in 2005, has a new home. Its founder and artistic director, the composer John Zorn, announced on Wednesday that it will move from the East Village to Greenwich Village and take up residence at the New School’s College of Performing Arts.

At 80, America’s Most Famous Composer Remains a Maverick
Washington Post: Anne Midgette
The man who’s conducted his 11 symphonies, Dennis Russell Davies, talks about why.

Louis Langrée to Stay with Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra Through 2022

Cincinnati.com: Janelle Gelfand
The new contract adds two years to the previous extension announced in March 2015. Langrée is the orchestra's 13th music director.

Sarasota Ballet Dancers Vote to Join Union

Herald-Tribune: Carrie Seidman
Dancers of the Sarasota Ballet have voted to join the American Guild of Musical Artists, or AGMA, establishing the ballet as a union company for the first time in its 26-year history.

Washington Ballet’s ‘Giselle’ Marks Company’s Transformation

The Washington Post: Sarah Kaufman
In Thursday’s opening-night performance at the Kennedy Center’s Eisenhower Theater, marking the start of the company’s spring season, it was clear that Kent’s touch is a subtle and sensitive one, apparent in such artistic intangibles as musicality, an apt quality of airiness and an overall attention to detail.

A Sputtering Violin: The 8 Best Classical Music Moments This Week

NY Times: Multiple reporters
NYT critics and reporters collect the best of what they’ve been hearing: the notes that sent shivers down their spines, the memorable voices, the quotations that cut to the heart of the story.

 
  INTERNATIONAL  
 


Birmingham Set to Become the Capital of ‘People’s Classical Music ’ says Julian Lloyd Webber
The Guardian: Vanessa Thorpe
When the doors of the Birmingham Conservatoire open this summer, the arrival of this £57m building will mean more than just a substantial investment in the artistic life of Birmingham. For Julian Lloyd Webber, the conservatoire’s principal, it will mark a challenge to the dominance of London’s established musical education colleges.

Frank Gehry and Daniel Barenboim on Their New Concert Hall in Berlin

NY Times: Joshua Barone
In the interview, Mr. Gehry and Mr. Barenboim discussed how they worked together to bring the “salle modulable” to life, where this hall fits into the music-rich city of Berlin and what they plan to do next.

Details of BSO-Leipzig Partnership Come Into View

Boston Globe: Malcolm Gay
As Boston Symphony Orchestra music director Andris Nelsons prepares for his new duties at the helm of the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, the maestro’s twin musical homes are offering new details about their upcoming partnership — a rare collaboration that will bring two of the world’s great orchestras together in an alliance that includes co-commissions, musician exchanges, and tour performances in both cities.


 
  ENTREPRENEURSHIP  
 


Spotify Has 50 Million People Paying for its Music. Why is it Still Unprofitable?
Quartz: Amy X. Wang
New year, new milestone. Music streaming service Spotify announced proudly on March 2 that it now has 50 million paying subscribers—more than double the latest figure boasted by Apple Music, its closest competitor, and representing a 25% increase over Spotify’s own numbers from six months ago.

Marketing Startup Music Audience Exchange Raises $6M
Xconomy: Angela Shah
A three-year-old Dallas starsup crunches data of around 2.4 million artists (from mainstream stars to lesser-known musicians) recording today across 765 genres. It correlates that information with more than 200 consumer attributes—such as psychographic indicators (like whether the person is introverted or unconventional), geographic location, and occupation and income—to suggest artists that might appeal to different types of consumers. MAX, as the startup is called, announced today that it has raised $6 million in funding to help, bringing its total investment so far to $9 million.

Fifth Biennial Pave Symposium: Arts Entrepreneurship In, With, and For Communities

Arizona State University. May 5-6.

Savvy Musician Workshop

University of South Carolina
The SAVVY Arts Venture Challenge is an immersive, experiential workshop designed to help musicians, performing artists, educators and others generate more income and impact. June 4-9.


 
  OFF THE BEATEN TRACK  
 

Turning Street Noise Into a City Symphony
CityLab: Linda Poon
An MIT composer is collecting snippets of sound to turn Miami and Philadelphia into audio masterpieces.

A Young Musician Plays The Oldest (Ever) Written Keyboard Music

WQXR: James Bennett II
Here’s some serious and simple music that sounds like it came straight out of a 1990s Saturday morning Medieval-times cartoon. It’s an estampie from the Robertsbridge Codex — and the oldest known piece of surviving music written specifically for the keyboard.


 
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