I have written several times about the need for music organizations to truly be a part of their communities. Staying on the edges without integrating with the people whom an ensemble serves is a risky way to run an organization in these days of declining donations and threatened government funding. There are myriad ways in which a group can do more to be a part of its community, but today I want to draw your attention to a new program launched by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra - the Citizen Musician Initiative - and share some thoughts on why music is so important for civic engagement.
It’s been another slow week for blogging due to all kinds of work. Luckily, in addition to being the first work of this site’s new partnership with Delos Productions, this week was a good one for all things classical music on the Web. So here’s this week’s Best of the Web, including some great blog posts, articles, and a video. Enjoy.
The results are in! As always, thanks much to all of you who participated in this week’s “Drop the Needle” competition. The level of particpation this week was great. Please keep sharing the weekly Drop the Needle posts with your friends.
This time, 4 participants got everything correct, including the name of the the piece which was Uma Camponeza Cantadeira, the second movement of Heitor Villa-Lobos’ Suite Floral. Here’s the whole thing for you to enjoy, recently recorded in arrangement by the Brazilian Guitar Quartet:
It is difficult for composers to have their work performed. It is more difficult for it to be well recorded. And it is even more difficult for composers to receive meaningful compensation for their work. One solution to this problem is the composition competition, in which an ensemble or organization invites composers to submit specific types of works for review and possible selection as the “winning” piece. It most all cases, the piece receives a performance, it may be recorded, and sometimes the composer is awarded a cash prize. By entering composition competitions composers give themselves an opportunity to get those three things are so elusive: performances, recordings, and pay. But some competitions ask for entry fees along with the submissions, which some composers and other interested parties find abhorrent.
This week is important here at KillingClassicalMusic.com. So many of you have come to enjoy the weekly Drop the Needle contest, and it is always fun to administer. Each week it is an opportunity to learn a new piece of music (or maybe reminisce with a familiar friend) and have a bit of fun at the same time. It’s even a great way to challenge your friends and test your knowledge against theirs. Today, I am pleased and excited to announce that this Wednesday will start a new tradition as a part of the contest.
In partnership with Delos Productions, Drop the Needle will have an added element of interest on the last Wednesday of each month: The winner will receive a complimentary recording of the piece in question.
It is very exciting to announce this partnership with Delos, one of the United States’ finest classical music record labels. Please take some time to learn more about them here. In addition to Delos’ fine reputation for producing excellent recordings, it is also encouraging that they are so active and engaged with the classical music community around the world through social media. It is a pleasure to be able to provide such a group with a new outlet and opportunity to share its music with classical music lovers around the world.
So, here’s how this will work…