Be the First Follower

Shirtless man dancing by himself in a park.

There are highly visible musicians who are bravely sticking their necks out. They are not programming what the audience wants, they are programming what the audience needs. Contrast this with the classical groups that program rock or pop transcriptions and advertise it as out-of-the-box thinking.

Dotting Dots

Colorful bokeh

What happens when you stop practicing under the weight of worship and start playing to see what you can add to the conversation?

Gelsey Bell: Get a Little Closer

Gelsey Bell

With a background that spans music theater, woman-at-the-piano club shows, and the presentation of experimental work, Gelsey Bell finds herself most at home in spaces of creative risk and vulnerability.

How to be While in Rehearsals

Musicians in an orchestra rehearsing with a conductor

I know people who have purposely worn dark colors to rehearsals because of the secret world of sweating that happens with a new work. But when in doubt about how to behave in the rehearsal room (or in meetings or when drafting emails, for that matter), always default to professionalism.

Decisions Made

Campbell's Soup-square

For better or worse, I have become more interested in the ways in which people think and grow than I am in their ability to reproduce subtle variations on a limited personal language, regardless of how successful that language may be.

Can’t See the Trees for the Forest at the 2015 Grammys

A photoshopped image of a bunch of Grammy awards in the middle of a forest

If the Recording Academy feels that certain awards they give are not worthy of exposure on network television (which ultimately are the awards that wind up getting reported on in most of the media outlets and therefore the ones that most people are aware actually of), why give the awards in the first place?

“This is My Design”

Hannibal-Harpsichord

Composers need to control their materials and, to an extent, their musicians. This is true for the murderer Gesualdo and the gentle John Cage, more so for the latter. Most composers are autocrats; Cage was totalitarian. And autocracy and totalitarianism, in their view of and relationship to human beings, are the political equivalents of malevolent psychopathology.

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