Why I Started The Society X Blog

As each piece of music journeys in a composers mind from inception to continuous revisions a question surfaces: At what point is a piece of music completed? The answer will differ per century, technical advancement, shift in industry but one answer has and will always remain: Until it is heard and criticized by the composer’s community and surrounding communities. If it goes unheard it’s impossible for the public to form opinions. With no opinions the culture cannot converse and therefore will not have progression. In this case the composer might as well kept it in their mind as what it originally was, an idea. An idea is the first step to all that surrounds you but unless that idea is heard and criticized by a community, it is inconsequential. Just like your current surroundings an idea for a piece of music must be heard. Having it heard is just as vital as writing the first note. The piece will be praised, ridiculed but no one can force a listener to be indifferent. The community will always formulate opinions and critiques from novel events and bring these events to their fate, completion.

This is the community that will assist in bringing new musical works to their completion simultaneously as keeping older works completed. Classical music needs the help as its community is too small. As a result criticism has been diminished. It has become an element of academicism, conforming to the strict rules set by those who birthed parameters out of daring to be different. Only those of a larger society feel comfortable criticizing. Since that larger society has not partaken in the academics of classical music they will be the ones to give allowance to the work’s completion. They will give their honest critiques only out of the utmost respect to the craft to insure the craft lives on. The society will have no name as its too diverse. It will only continue on as a symbol that has represented a multitude of elements in umpteen cultures. A symbol that will represent all those, outside of the concert hall, who give their services allowing their community to progress with the rest of the world. That symbol will be X.

Why We May Need To Stop Listening To Beethoven

Classical music lives on because of the artists who dared to be different. They challenged the status quo and broke down the walls their predecessors built. However the payment that comes to those who take these risks is their reputation, the respect their community gives them only to take it back. Many living composers have been blamed for the death of classical music while many dead composes grow the genre. Or do they? It might be worth taking a look at why a dead composer’s music, the music that is the force of the genre, may be killing off the genre slowly.

Imagine asking a stranger to name three dead composers. Beethoven, Mozart, Bach. Easy. Now ask them to name three living composers. What we don’t hear are the names Philip Glass, John Corigliano, or John Adams. I’m sure there are many reasons why their names aren’t brought up but the one that should be most obvious is that performing the music of dead composers takes the opportunity away for newer works. It’s not balanced. I just took a visit to the LA Phil’s upcoming concert schedule. For the upcoming season the names I see are Hindemith, Haydn, Mozart, Schoenberg, Mozart again, Beethoven. Beethoven has his 1st and 3rd piano concertos in the same night, a concert succeeding a performance of his 2nd piano! 

The old masters sale tickets, I get it. But is it too much to ask that a living composer be put on the program? I just want to feel something novel. I want to witness the next chapter in classical music performed in a world class concert hall. I want to observe the audience’s and, if present, the composer’s reactions. I want to take part in criticism, debates, praise. The world deserves it. If you are one to want to view the continuation of classical music and believe that you are half as passionate as Beethoven was about this art ask yourself if Beethoven would prefer an oversaturated world of his music at the cost of sacrificing the genre his music helped build.  

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