Discussing women and others not usually included in the classical canon

Posted on: March 27, 2018

Thursday’s (3/22) “Performance Today” syndicated radio program features a conversation between host Fred Child and Anne Midgette, classical musical critic for the Washington Post, about “the women who have been omitted from classical music history and the women who are making classical music history today. Child: Over the centuries there’s what you call a different template for success of male composers and female composers. What do you mean by that? Midgette: It’s not just in music…. The narrative … of what constitutes achievement in our world has been largely a male-dominated one…. The very way we see music as a museum of canonical works and we judge whether new works are worthy to be included in that canon and measuring women, measuring minorities, measuring ‘degenerate’ so-called artists from 1930s Germany, against that ruler … they’re always going to come up wanting…. I think a lot of composers continued to write for the canon, again not only women. Philip Glass is … turning out absolutely canonical music even if many of the major orchestras in America view him as this kind of maverick … a great example of even a white male seeking inclusion into this canon by writing music that fits its template.”

Posted March 27, 2018