Spring for Music, an annual festival of concerts by North American symphony and chamber orchestras at Carnegie Hall, was created in part to start a conversation about repertoire, about audience expectations, and about orchestral programming in general. To help continue this conversation, the festival is hosting a series of online events allowing participants to interact with members of the Spring for Music team in an open and engaged dialogue. For three sessions leading up the festival, click here. Each session will start with an artist guest host posting a statement. Participants will then be able to talk about the topic with the guest host and fellow chatters. The schedule is as follows:
April 28 at 12noon ET: Steven Stucky's August 4, 1964 confronts recent history. He writes, "How does a composer write a work about a failed President (Johnson) and a probable war criminal (McNamarra) without lapsing into propaganda? Does he have to check his personal opinions at the door? If a middle-class white composer writes music about the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s, does he risk being patronizing? In writing a historical symphony does he steal the voices of those who actually went through the struggles of the movement, fought and died in Vietnam?" He is excited to work out this questions with chatters.
May 2 at 12noon ET: Composer Daniel Bernard Roumain (DBR) hosts a live discussion on the viability of the traditional symphonic structure. He would like to ask, "Are music halls, concert dress, conventional instrument choices, and other orthodox custom strangling the composer's imagination? Are we limiting the potential for a truly relevant, uncompromising, and exciting orchestral experience? Is there a way to work within the tradition and move it forward, or should we burn it all down and start over?" DBR shares his unique perspective as a contemporary, Haitian-American composer.