Musicians and composers, keeping up with digital technology

Posted on: June 10, 2016

In Thursday’s (6/9) New York Times, Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim writes that today “increasing numbers of players are using iPads and laptops instead of sheet music, especially now that the latest generation of tablets come in the same size as a standard score. And styluses like the Apple Pencil … are beginning to take the place of pencils and erasers…. Conversations with some of classical music’s most passionate advocates of the gadgets and with developers like forScore and Tonara that write applications for them reveal a number of developments…. The line between scholarly and practical spheres of influence is becoming blurred…. It has brought performers closer to historical sources, including composer manuscripts…. Nicholas Kitchen, a violinist with the Borromeo String Quartet … said that when his quartet workshops a new piece with the composer, changes are sometimes made on the spot and shared wirelessly with the players…. Some things may be lost. The sort of expressionist fury with which Menuhin marked up Bach or the stenciled grace of a Schubert manuscript reveal much about the human behind the artist.” Says pianist Wu Han, an early adopter of the iPad, says, “If you have the neat printed score, you don’t see the struggle.”

Posted June 10, 2016

Pictured: Matt Haimovitz setting up his score on an iPad before a pop-up concert. Photo by Michael George / New York Times