The latest entry in the realm of meaningful conversation about diversity in classical music comes from Robert Jackson Wood in the 12/10/2020 edition of The New Republic. Wood takes a different view on the topic by taking aim at those who help influence the discussion: critics (and by extension, media outlets).
This is an absolute must-read (h/t Bill Eddins) and the author does a terrific job at adding a great deal of necessary clarity to topics that are otherwise easy to find things getting lost in the weeds.
Today, the genre is grappling with what, on the surface, might seem like an entirely different aspect of its legacy: the historical lack of diversity in its orchestras and ensembles. The truth is that these legacies could hardly be more intertwined: Economic discrimination has produced diversity dramas of all sorts. Yet you’d never know this from recent attempts by critics to wrestle with the genre’s representation problems without so much as a passing reference to class. It’s a baffling omission, and one that seems even more egregious when we note just how formative class politics have been for the genre’s institutions and spaces—particularly in the United States.