What will the next new music be? Some of that will depend on which new composers get "discovered" and the reaction to their works.
The London Symphony Orchestra and the Panufnic Young Composers Scheme gives a chance for emerging composers to work with the LSO and potentially earn a commission for a large scale work. Jazon Yarde's All Souls Seek Joy will be premiered on 28 November 2008, and Charlie Piper has been commissioned for a Barbican concert in the LSO's 2008/2009 season. Reading some of the biographies for the composers who have participated in previous years (2008, 2007, 2006) it's remarkable how many include jazz as an influence. A review of Jason Yarde's music in the Guardian reads, 'Yarde is a musician to watch. In his work, "world" meets jazz meets crossover to the point where such terms mean nothing. We are left with just glorious music.' - 30 November 2007.
Another aspect about each of these composers is the number of awards they have received. They are the cream of the crop. Not all of them are University taught, and several do not have specific compositional training - but that doesn't prevent them from writing beautiful music. I wasn't able to find examples of their works on the Internet, but perhaps the most heartening aspect consistent with pretty much every composer's work is the very tonal/melodic nature of their music. It really is beautiful, lyrical - music.
Do I feel outclassed? No, not particularly - envious perhaps, but I feel I can compete (if that's the right word) in their world. Do I feel old (as most of these composers were born near the same time as my son)? No, as there are many examples of other composers just coming into their own who are my age and older. Do I feel heartened? YES, most definitely. The music I listened to gives me the impression the future of music is headed in a similar direction as my own music... so, I am composing music which is, in many respects, in tune with what other emerging composers are creating. That's cool!!!!