Music

The world’s first public orchestra

“Backed by a $700,000 Pew grant, the Philadelphia Public Orchestra ambitiously seeks to redefine just what an orchestra is — and what it plays.”

Pricey tickets. WASPy galas. The Philadelphia Public Orchestra is set to overturn all of those notions.

The Philadelphia Public Orchestra’s manifesto makes it quite clear that the musicians themselves will eventually and collectively steer the ship: “After the orchestra has been established for at least one season, the orchestra members ideally take control of all decision-making.”

“The orchestra should take over and let the musicians, the performers, think of who they might like to ask for a commission, what themes are interesting to them. We’re coming together to create a kind of work of art, and there is a radical power in that. Interesting things can happen.”

Music

Some music for peeps

MUSIC+WRITING
I love this Simon and Garfunkel song. Music is often inspiring to me. The score to Alfred Hitchcock‘s film North by Northwest helped me write what was supposed to be a short story for a college writing class. It ended up on the path to being a novel. The composer, Bernard Herrmann, was a pioneering genius with quirky, eccentric musical tastes, much like the fantastic Ennio Morricone. That novel is one of my unfinished projects, which I should resurrect and complete. Wish me luck.

Music

Building a bridge between music and the healing arts

Milford Graves, a “legendary” artist and drummer, has died at the age of 79. He “figured out a way to feed the soul of anyone he performed with, dismantling barriers between drumming and dancing, between concert and healing ceremony, and even between musician and instrument.” His “radical approach galvanized everyone from Lou Reed to Albert Ayler, and built a bridge between music and the healing arts.”