Over the weekend I received an email from an orchestra executive that commented on how much better the world of classical music would be if it was better at communication. He talked about one topic in particular; press kits that come from guest artists and/or their managers. Regarding that issue he had this to say:
What about exciting video footage of the artist for use in the production of television spots or internet ads? What about copies of newspaper or magazine interviews with the artist, which point out interesting things about the artist? What about more interesting bio information? What about interesting photos that show us something of the artist’s personality, instead of the dull head shots? A few artists have some of these things, but the vast majority do not, and their managers, when asked why not, simply reply that it is too expensive to produce and that “no one would use it anyway”
He couldn’t be more correct. By clinging to a fifty year old model for press kits, guest artist managers have inadvertently contributed to the overall problem of an orchestra’s inability to communicate in a meaningful way with their audience. All of this discussion has conspired to help me write my recent article at Partial Observer go give it a read and you’ll start to see how we can begin to move classical music back into the mainstream of American cultural consciousness.