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In preparation for an exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art on surrealism, I am in the midst of re-reading André Breton’s first Surrealist Manifesto. I am always a little tickled by his vigorous academic defense—calling upon Freud, Proust, and Pascal—of the games he and his hand-picked disciples played. In a less pretentious, yet equally […]

View from the East: Is New Music Thriving?

Greg Sandow I’d like to think new music is thriving. Certainly there are reasons for thinking it is. Last year I served on an awards panel for ASCAP; we looked at hundreds of applications from composers all over the country, all of whom were getting performances, many of them from local performing groups. We New […]

View from the West: The Decline of Radio

Dean SuzukiPhoto by Ryan Suzuki No matter how you slice it, new music is a tough sell. Composers young and old have a difficult time getting commissions and having their works performed. With limited budgets, concerts are often not well publicized and, as an inevitable result, are poorly attended. How then are composers and new […]

OBITUARY: Composer and Pianist Leo Ornstein

Leo Ornstein Photo courtesy Severo M. Ornstein Russian born composer and pianist Leo Ornstein died peacefully on February 24 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. He was born in December of either 1892 or 1893, making him either 108 nor 109 years old. Ornstein was recognized as a piano prodigy at an early age. He studied at […]

OBITUARY: Composer Advocate Sylvia Goldstein, 82

Sylvia Goldstein, a board member of the American Music Center and a former corporate vice president of Boosey & Hawkes, died at her home on Monday afternoon, January 21, 2002, after a long battle with cancer. She was 82. In early January, the AMC Board of Directors awarded Goldstein a 2002 Letter of Distinction, the […]

OBITUARY: New NEA Chair Michael Hammond, 69

Michael Hammond, confirmed as chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts on Dec. 20, 2001, died last night. He was 69. “It is a tragic loss for our nation that his tenure has been cut so short,” Mark Weinberg, Director of Communications for the Endowment, said in a statement. “All of us at the […]

OBITUARY: Ronald Freed, 64, Head of European American Music Distributors

Ronald FreedPhoto courtesy ASCAP Ronald Freed, head of European American Music Distributors and noted supporter of American composers, died February 20, after suffering a brain hemorrhage. He was 64. Tom Broido, President of the Theodore Presser Company and the Music Publishers’ Association of the U.S. (a position Freed also held at one point), expressed the […]