Slatkin’s latest book, “Classical Crossroads,” examines classical-music industry

Posted on: September 14, 2021

“Leonard Slatkin has opinions,” writes Daniel Durchholz in Sunday’s (9/12) St. Louis Post-Dispatch (MO). “He always has, of course…. But three years after the conclusion of his music directorship of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra … he feels freer than ever to express his thoughts about the challenges classical music … faces going forward, and how those challenges might be met. That’s the premise of ‘Classical Crossroads: The Path Forward for Music in the 21st Century,’ Slatkin’s third book, following ‘Conducting Business’ and ‘Leading Tones: Reflections on Music, Musicians, and the Music Industry.’ … Each chapter offers an informed, opinionated and sometimes provocative look at individual aspects of classical music and how orchestras operate. There are chapters on conductors, composers, soloists, music directors, repertoire, orchestral personality and so on. Slatkin even takes a deep dive inside the business…. He suggests changing the standard process of orchestra auditions, which for years has included placing a barrier in front of the musician auditioning to make the issues of race and gender moot…. Slatkin contends that the barrier should still be used in the preliminary rounds of the audition process, but come down in the later ones to ensure discrimination is ground out for good.”