When I attend new music events I feel a sense of adventure and hope. The adventure comes when I’m not sure what the music will sound like. The hope is that I may be lucky enough to be among the first to hear a work that will make a lasting impact on many people. If I am familiar with a composer’s music, when listening to a new piece I’ll look for what has changed, as well as what has been integrated into the composition from older works.
When I hear music of a composer who is unfamiliar to me, I’ll listen for a distinctive voice that grabs and demands my attention. Although nothing matches the thrill of being a witness to a new musical creation at a premiere, and it is also very satisfying to hear a work a few years after the premiere, knowing that with each subsequent performance, its chances of entering the repertory increase.