Let’s do a quick exercise: listen to a sound, any sound (a baby crying, a phone ringing), and ask yourself: can I hum it? Trace the movement of the sound with your hand in the air and observe: is it rising and falling in a pattern? The answers to these questions point toward the equipment needed to recreate them.
Composer, arranger, conductor, and teacher Alice Parker has been a fixture of the choral music community since working with the legendary Robert Shaw Chorale when she was fresh out of college in the late 1940s. Parker has devoted herself almost exclusively to music for the voice, since she strongly believes that people find their common ground through singing together.
Composer Andrew Norman shares how his creative anxiety has led him into a current period of writer’s block.
No artist in Baltimore lives here because they’re making a lot of money or getting a lot of commissions or opportunities. These music creators live here because they’re inspired every day. This place is fertile ground for truly original artmaking.
When I think about music 10 years into the future, the one thing that jumps out in my mind most is the perennial question of genre: How we define it and how it’ll change. Will there be any genres in 10 years? What will post-genre and cross-genre and everything in-between look like? Which new genres will emerge and take over the musical landscape?
Contemporary music is still desperately needed in the teaching repertoire for most orchestral instruments. But I have found that EVERY style can be student friendly if it is tested and presented in a way as to welcome the learner into its universe and not alienate them.
Can we foment a culture in which composers’ utterances are deemed valuable solely on the basis of having been uttered, regardless of hegemonic notions of musical quality?
For Huang Ruo, music–like theater–exists in a four-dimensional space. There is also a larger purpose in most of Huang Ruo’s work, whether it is to call attention to stories of people, particularly Asians and Asian-Americans, whose voices have often not been heard, or to provide an environment for reflection and healing.
Conductor Ryan McAdams shares how the myth of the “ideal” conductor, perpetuated at conservatory and within Western culture, glorifies destructive lifestyles such as living in isolation, excessive behaviors, constant striving for perfection, appearing omniscient, and hiding all human vulnerabilities.
Music is indelibly linked to space and place. It has only been until very recently that the idea of space and place has been limited to the tangible. That shift away from liveness (something that I believe was on its way) is a huge step in the future of new music.
Different Cities Different Voices is a new series from NewMusicBox that explores music communities across the US through the voices of local creators and innovators. Discover what is unique about each city’s new music scene through a set of personal essays written by people living and creating there, and hear music from local artists selected… Read more »
Julia Adolphe shares her strategies for continuing to write during a time of personal hardship and discusses the pressures and myths surrounding creating art in response to moments of crisis.
Guidelines for how to pitch to NewMusicBox.
Among the recurring themes of our conversation with composer-pianist-conductor Matthew Aucoin was generosity and risk-taking, something that is in abundance in Aucoin’s own music as well as his personality. Over the course of an hour we talked about his opera Eurydice which was just performed at the Metropolitan Opera, the first commercial recording of his music, his just released new book about opera, The Impossible Art, which was also just released, his desire to develop new musical repertoire that addresses climate change, and much much more.
You need to trust your voice in your personal life in order to fully trust your creative voice and vision as an artist.
Maia Jasper White shares how her relationship to music-making changed as she cared for her young daughter, who underwent surgery for craniosynostosis and a subsequent period of PTSD.
Terri Lyne Carrington was practically born into jazz, but she is not a traditionalist. By embracing elements from rock, rhythm and blues, and hip-hop into her own compositions, she is making music that is very much about the present moment. And in founding the Berklee Institute for Jazz and Gender Justice and now partnering with New Music USA on the new Next Jazz Legacy program, Terri Lyne hopes to build a future that dismantles the jazz patriarchy and eliminates the gender imbalance among instrumentalists.
I reflect on why art is always imperfect and unpack a wave of anxiety that emerged for me while finishing a large-scale work.
Composer/pianist Billy Childs shares the impact of the pandemic and systemic racism in America on his creativity and how he returns to his writing process with practice and persistence.
Developing instrumentalists and singers need technically and financially accessible works from living composers. Here is a mix of practical and philosophical ideas for how you can help.
Composers and best friends Dale Trumbore and Julia Adolphe discuss living with anxiety disorders and writing during a pandemic.
Different Cities Different Voices is a new bi-monthly series from NewMusicBox that explores music communities across the US through the voices of local creators and innovators. Discover what is unique about each city’s new music scene through a set of personal essays written by people living and creating there, and hear music from local artists… Read more »
Percussionist and arts policy consultant Sidney Hopson’s discovery of cultural policy enabled him to combat audition anxiety, a decade of depression, and the pervasive racism of the classical music industry.
Concert cancellations are likely to commence in the coming weeks and we should be concerned for the musicians and the small choral art organizations who support them.