Using Documentary Filmmaking To Help Reconfirm Classical Music’s Relevance

The 11/3/2018 edition of The Baltimore Sun published an article by Tim Smith about a new documentary titled R.A.W. – From Destitute to Doctorate by Baltimore filmmakers Darren Durlach and David Larson. It’s a great overview article that introduces the documentary about tubist Richard White, who went from being homeless, eating from trash cans, and abandoned on the streets of Baltimore to earning a position as an orchestral tuba player, one of …

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Better Late Than Never?

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The 9/20/2018 edition of the Los Angeles Times published an article by Mark Swed that features an interview with Simon Woods, the LA Philharmonic’s new CEO. It a good get-to-know-you interview that provides Woods a platform to address some of the topics on his mind about where the orchestra is and where he wants it to go. To that end, one of the primary goals on Woods’ mind is increasing diversity …

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Women Pioneers Among On-Stage Musicians

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Recently, I read an essay by Nancy Fako that recounted her experiences as one of the early women to win a position in the Boys Club brass sections of 1960 era large budget orchestras. It’s a great essay (something I hope will be published here soon) but it made me wonder about similar women musicians who earned positions during that era and braved the gauntlet of sexism and discrimination. I posted …

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More On Women Composers And 2018/19 Programming

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Back in February of this year, we examined the issue of 2018/19 programming and its inauspicious lack of women composers at several large and mid-size budget orchestras. At that time, Alex Ross’ tweeted a blurb about the lack of women composers and since then, the topic has drawn attention from a wide range or stakeholders. One of the latest entries is an excellent commentary piece from Peter Dobrin in the 8/23/2018 …

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#TBT Diversity Boomerang

Reflection or Projection

In response to yesterday’s post about the Canadian Opera Company (COC) and Toronto Symphony Orchestra (TSO) losing city funding due to a lack of diversity, I noticed some intriguing conversations across social media. One of the overriding themes was a sense that orchestras are genuinely trying as hard as they can to address diversity and that stated commitment should count for something. These points made me think about a post here …

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