What makes one work better than another is often a matter of programming and the performer’s style and approach to learning a new piece, but it can also be an issue of playability.
It would seem that dramatizations of composers are stuck either with the low maudlinism of Hollywood biopics or the high metaphysics of Thomas Mann’s novel Doctor Faustus and Adrian Leverkühn, its fictionalized Schoenberg. But wait—author Joan Peyser demurs.
We do the math, so you don’t have to.
Classical music junkies seem to be in cahoots with the audiophiles to create some kind of angry lynch mob and burn their latest heretic, the iPod. Cut us some slack here.
Once new music is taken out of the ivory tower, away from audiences who (ostensibly) have the prowess to put it in a meaningful context, one has to contend with the tastes of normal people.
Despite clever marketing schemes, ultimately the price we’re willing to pay for something has little to do with whether it’s cheap or even fair.
I’m so confused, boss.
Is the lack of interest in conceptual approaches to music a sociological incongruity, or a generational thing?
What sort of psychology induces the programming of known bad repertoire rather than the only possibly bad commission?
Is it better to compose away from an instrument or at one?