Composer Daniel Bernard Roumain appointed artistic catalyst at New Jersey Symphony

Posted on: May 17, 2021

“As Daniel Bernard Roumain becomes New Jersey Symphony Orchestra’s first resident ‘artistic catalyst,’ in an effort for the classical institution to modernize its programs, Roumain rather succinctly breaks down his new job,” writes Jacqueline Cutler in Wednesday’s (5/12) “ ‘Catalyst is change within, and pointing outwards for the field, so it means an artist committed to artistic activism,’ Roumain [says]…. ‘It also means that the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra wants to look at their history as much as they look forward and how they might lead the field in terms of their investment and commitment to BIPOC [Black, Indigenous, and People of Color] artists and artistry.’ Roumain will be ‘composing, performing and advising the NJSO on programming,’ says spokeswoman Victoria McCabe…. The driving reason to engage Roumain, she stresses, ‘is to increase diversity, equity and inclusion.’ Roumain will premiere two commissions at NJSO over two seasons…. At 50, he brims with ideas and isn’t easily labeled as he moves fluidly among genres.” He adds, “There is a lot of fear for a lot of arts organizations: How we do survive and do equity at the same time? If you do both, that might be the key to our survival.”