During the funding application process you are doing something similar to what you do as an artist: Sending your gifts out into the world with little hope of recognition or remuneration. But you are not sending forth your art; instead you are launching a very elaborate lottery ticket into the world.
We have the opportunity to look beyond traditional funding models to keep our music fresh and authentic. How can each of us help to create a supportive community locally?
Jed Speare insisted on listening to the city, finding music in the matter and memory of urban spaces—from cable car barns to sewage treatment plants and everywhere in between.
Composing about place and stories of its cultural, geographic, and human history serves a vital advocatorial role on several levels.
With our collective action, it is within our grasp to begin to create a new kind of concert hall for the 21st century—bringing in new audiences, inspiring new generations through art and music, and building stronger communities.
“Do you consider the audience when you are writing your music?” Several times, I’m shocked to hear the composer reply: “No.” How can this be?
We have spent thousands of hours in practice rooms and countless hours alone composing, practicing, and pursuing funding. Music is hard. But we can use the adversity training idea to fully embrace the challenge that music, and the surrounding industry, brings to our lives.
Let’s consider the case of this article. The title occurred to me in an instant, and within that instant, I knew I had enough ideas to fill an article. Up until that point, I honestly had absolutely no idea what I was going to write about. I am not claiming that it is a “divinely inspired” title, as that would be a little presumptuous. But the fact remains, it came to me when I needed it, so that I could meet my deadline.
Surrounding ourselves with a diversity of people will help to make us smarter and more creative. Building it into our projects will continue to result in innovative works and better music. But that doesn’t mean it’s easy to do.
I was told after I wrote it—by a (perhaps too) “serious” musician—that BasSOON It Will Be Christmas wouldn’t get played much. Well, it gets played at least a dozen times annually and has been played by many top orchestras, such as the symphonies of Atlanta, Houston, and Pittsburgh.