Classical91.5 (wxxi) is a English-speaking blog specialized in the field of classical music and opera. As such, Classical91.5 (wxxi) is a qualified source of soclassiq, like FT.com Music or All the conducting master class and many others. The oldest article indexed by soclassiq is dated 2017-08-31. Since then, a total of 154 articles have been written and published by Classical91.5 (wxxi).
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The last article in Classical91.5 (wxxi), "The New Yorker magazine reflects on White Supremacy in Classical Music", is dated 2020-11-19. By 2019, this source had published 26 articles (26 since the beginning of 2020). Over the past 12 months, Classical91.5 (wxxi) has published an average of 2 articles per month.
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One of WXXI's (recent) Community Advisory Board Members and lover of classical music, shared Alex Ross' September 14, 2020 New Yorker article with me, titled Black Scholars Confront White Supremacy in Classical Music. It is long; it is deep; it gives perspective; it challenges; it enlightens; it is thought-provoking, and so much more. As we face the challenges of race, diversity, equity and inclusion, I will not make a personal statement about this article - I will simply challenge you to read it and think about it.
Since the pandemic shuttered all live music performances, musicians have been struggling to figure out how to bring music back to the people, and how to keep up the learning and performing. The creativity has been outstanding as so many have learned to use technology both to learn and share their art.
Editor’s note: Canadian pianist Luke Welch says he feels like a unicorn in the world of classical music. Luke was born and grew up in Mississauga, Ontario. He played his first public performance at age seven. He’s passionate, talented, and sometimes bewildered by how he’s been treated. I hope his account of his experiences will move you as much as it moves me. ~ Brenda Tremblay From an early age, as I was first enrolled in piano lessons, I was quick to realize that there were not (m)any other young black pianists who were learning how to play classical music – at least that I had ever met. Fast forward a couple of decades, and nothing has changed. No “growth of the sport,” no “catering to a wider audience.” There are so many ways this writing can go . . . is it a question of the chicken/egg concept? Is […]
Editor's note: As soon as I read this essay by conductor Ramona Wis, I wanted to share it with you. Dr. Wis's ideas offer comfort for everyone, not just musicians. We can all face an uncertain future with grace and courage. We're all in this together. ~ Brenda Tremblay The Conductor as Yogi: From Holding Space to Making Space By Ramona M. Wis The first time I heard the phrase “holding space” was from a colleague describing her experience with someone going through a tough time. “I just held space for her,” she said. It was a phrase I was not familiar with but soon started seeing everywhere (or maybe it was just “blue car syndrome,” where my increased awareness led to noticing what was always there).
The Public Media Journalists Association (PMJA) has announced awards for outstanding journalism, and two WXXI staffers have earned accolades for their work. Mona Seghatoleslami won 2 nd place in the ‘Best use of Sound’ category for a feature she did called “New Sounds from Ossia” about student-run ensemble at the Eastman School of Music. Listen to Mona’s feature . WXXI’s Beth Adams earned a top spot for her radio feature “Mission Mustang” about a place in Honeoye Falls where horses helps veterans readjust to their civilian lives. (This piece was also named "Outstanding Feature" earlier this year by the New York State Broadcasters Association.) Listen to Beth’s story. According to WXXI news director Randy Gorbman, the PMJA awards are grouped in divisions by newsroom size. WXXI is in category ‘A,’ one down from the largest newsrooms in the country. Gorbman adds that WXXI was the only public radio newsroom in […]
An energetic quiet descends on the auditorium as the light dims. You welcome the concertmaster with polite applause, and he leads the orchestra in one final tuning. The conductor strides confidently onstage, swinging her arm with panache to gesture for the orchestra to rise as she takes the bow on their behalf. As she takes her place at the podium, the audience on the edge of their seats, a few coughs break the silence. Suddenly, she slashes the air with her baton, drawing out Beethoven’s famous bah-bah-bah-bahh! and they’re off to the races with his Fifth Symphony. You let the music wash over you in your seat. Its tense, agitated rhythms draw you in like a racing heartbeat, driving from one moment to the next. But after a minute or two, you find your mind wandering. Am I in the mood for dessert tonight? What was that TV series my […]
(This is a guest post from C24's Music Through the Night host Garrett McQueen.) As the world begins to heal following the deaths of George Floyd , Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor , people are taking another look at the ways in which racism has impacted institutions beyond law enforcement — including classical music.
I miss the bustle around Gibbs Street. Eastman School of Music students and faculty walking around with instrument cases, stopping in at Java's, playing concerts, and all the rest. But it helps to know that even though they're mostly not around physically in Rochester, the Eastman community is still making music and enriching our world while they are studying. It's all just online! Here are a few highlights to share, including an inspiring chorus, new cinematic music, the ode to joy, and more.
“The show must go on...” That mantra is the rallying cry of artists finding ways to create, perform, and share their work no matter what is happening around them. But Tuesday June 2nd is different: a group in the music industry has called on performers, musicians and the industry itself to make a different choice in light of ongoing racism and violence. Classical musicians, orchestras, and the music and recording industry on the whole will interrupt their work and performances , and take time connect with their communities. They are encouraging people to stop and think, to learn and “ have conversation s about what actions we need to take together to support the Black community.” This effort is being coordinate d with the hashtags: #theshowmustbepaused or #BlackOutTuesday.
“ The music begins with me, so I must write music that resonates with me and that I feel committed to sharing with the world. But the music comes to life through performers, teachers, students, and audiences. And when they chuckle at a funny moment or are moved by a lyrical melody, then I know I have written something meaningful.” – Steve Danyew Steve Danyew is a composer based here in Rochester, who also teaches courses focused on helping young musicians develop their own creative careers at the Eastman School of Music’s Institute for Music Leadership. He took the time to share a little bit of his creative process for a recent composition that awaits its premiere: a fanfare inspired by a mural on the wall of Kodak Hall in Eastman Theatre.