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Recent News, Commentary, and Ideas.



Musicians Take on the Business, Calling for Change
The New York Times: Ben Sesario
There’s an industry-focused activism undertaken by a range of artists, from big stars who take a principled stand to middle-class musicians who need to worry about paying the bills.

Open the Music Industry’s Black Box
The New York Times: David Byrne
This should be the greatest time for music in history — more of it is being found, made, distributed and listened to than ever before. Yet, there is a rising tide of dissatisfaction, but we can work together to make fundamental changes that will be good for all.

Ride or Die
REDEF: Liam Boluk
If the recording industry hopes to restore growth, labels and artists will need to confront the changes brought about by the likes of iTunes, Apple Music, and Spotify. Liam Boluk (REDEF) assesses the disruption of the industry and the implications for all musicians.


Elements of Style in Violette Verdy
The Nation: Marina Harss
Distinguished Professor and legendary Balanchine dancer Violette Verdy embodies the alchemy that turns music into meaning.

The Real Winner in the Tchaikovsky Competition is the Man who Came Last
The Spectator: Damian Thompson
Lucas Debargue, a 24-year-old French pianist, came fourth in the finale of the Tchaikovsky competition in Moscow on 30 June, yet he’s the only competitor anyone is talking about. Why?

I Can’t Go On!: What’s Behind Stagefright?
The New Yorker: Joan Acocella
Stagefright has not been heavily studied, which is strange because, as Solovitch tells us, it is common not only among those who make their living on the stage but among the rest of us, too.

The Tragedy of iTunes and Classical Music
The Atlantic: Robinson Meyer
What are people with large MP3 libraries to do?

Apple Music’s Minimal Impact on Spotify or Pandora
Digital Music News: Paul Resnikoff
Apple Music launched on June 30th.  It’s almost like it didn’t happen.

Tracing the History of Theft in Pop Music
New Statesman: Yo Zushi
Does culture exist in a vacuum? This “love letter to creative thievery” would suggest not.


Time for Three Trio Welcomes Newest Member
Classicalite: Ian Holubiak
Classically-trained string trio, Time for Three, will welcome its newest member, VC "Young Artist" Nikki Chooi. The violinist will succeed departing member, Zachary Jon DePue.

Another Major Newspaper Critic Position Enters Limbo
Adaptistration: Drew McManus
Continuing the decade-long trend of traditional newspapers eliminating cultural reporters, the Dallas Morning News may eliminate the full time music critic position following the departure of the current professional occupying that spot, Scott Cantrell.

Artistic Director Back at Cincinnati World Piano Competition Janelle Gelfand
In a stunning turnaround, the Cincinnati World Piano Competition has reversed the reported dismissal of its artistic director, saying that the action was not authorized or recognized by its board of directors.

The Real Meaning Behind the Merger of ARTnews and Art in America
ArtNet News: Ben Davis
It is a media cliché that more has changed in the last 10 years in journalism than in the century before that. Yesterday's big news that ARTnews and Art in America are merging is a gem-perfect art version of this story.

Artificial Intelligence Project Learns from Jazz Musicians
Tech Insider: Guia Marie Del Prado
Jazz musician and computer scientist Kelland Thomas is building an Artificial Intelligence program that can learn to play jazz and jam with the best of them.

Watch: 5 Classical Music Gems from the Associated Press's Massive New YouTube Archive
WQXR: Brian Wise
The Associated Press and British Movietone recently published their extensive newsreel archives on YouTube – more than a million minutes of footage documenting the most momentous and historic events of the last 120 years. Along with numerous reports on political upheaval and natural disasters, there is also some coverage of classical music. Here are five standouts.


Is Cuban Music About To Blow Up In America?
The Fader: April Clare Welsh
As the U.S. and Cuba re-establish diplomatic relations, Latin music execs are scouting the island for crossover hits.

Bolshoi Ballet Acid Attack Leader Loses his Job
The Arts Desk: Ismene Brown
Sergei Filin, the Bolshoi Ballet artistic director whose sight was maimed two years ago by an acid attack organized by a disgruntled dancer, will lose his job when his contract expires next spring.

Sir Andrew Davis to lead Melbourne Symphony Orchestra until 2019
The Age: Michael Dwyer
The Melbourne Symphony Orchestra has confirmed the maestro will extend his original four-year tenure to lead the orchestra until 2019, parallel to his work with Chicago's Lyric Opera and the Toronto and BBC symphony orchestras.


Aspen Music Students Develop App to Financially Support Auditions
Aspen Times: Andrew Travers
The new site — — is collecting donations and inviting musicians to apply for scholarships for plane tickets and travel expenses.

Dance Network Steps Up 2 Screens This Fall; Initial Programming Announced
Deadline Hollywood: Ross A. Lincoln
Dance Network, the first channel devoted entirely to dance-related programming, was announced today and will launch in the fall. The network will be a direct-to-consumers.

Look At This: What Does Music Look Like?
NPR: Tom Huizinga
When Denise Burt started designing classical music album covers she knew nothing about the music. And that might have been to her advantage.

The Entrepreneurship of the Creative Moment
NewMusicBox: Justin Ralls
An examination of the entrepreneurship phenomena and implications for composers.


John Cage’s 1960 Game Show Performance
Hyperallergic: Elisa Wouk Almino
“He is probably the most controversial figure in the musical world today and when you hear his performance, if you will forgive me, you’ll understand why,” says the talk show host in the 1960 clip of I’ve Got a Secret.

You Call That a Pirouette? Football Players Learn Ballet
McClatchy’s America: David Cloninger
Dance Appreciation is a course that an estimated 1,000 USC students take yearly. Combining the study of dance – its origins, development and implementations into past and present culture – with basic movement, students get to learn aspects of all types of dance and try a little themselves.


Enjoy reading all our past issues, organized chronologically >

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