Aspen Music Fest to launch inclusion initiative for programming

Posted on: April 20, 2021

“When the Aspen Music Festival and School announced the program for its summer season last week, the big news and the headline were that live music and orchestras would be returning after the long silence of the novel coronavirus pandemic,” writes Andrew Travers in Thursday’s (4/15) Aspen Times. “The 2021 season marks the launch of its initiative to spotlight diverse composers who identify as AMELIA (African-American, Middle Eastern, Latin, Indigenous, and Asian). It is the product of three years of evaluating diversity, equity and inclusion at the festival as well as canon-expanding scholarship and research by the festival’s artistic administration, led by Asadour Santourian…. Santourian said the festival is hoping to … properly [usher] composers and pieces of music that have been historically sidelined due to structural racism into the repertoire of musicians, orchestras and festivals. Some 75% of performances this summer will include works by AMELIA composers…. They range from new works by living composers to works by 18th century writers sidelined by history …The effort toward equity will be sustained in years to come, festival officials said, and will include commissions of new work by AMELIA composers.”