"Orchestras must embrace new technology following a BBC experiment that highlighted the huge demand for classical downloads. More than 1.3 million people downloaded Beethoven's symphonies for free during a two-month period last year. That proved there is a large untapped market for classical music, according to US critic, composer and consultant Greg Sandow. "
From BBC News report on last week's Association of British Orchestras Conference.
Pliable says if I offer free Beluga Caspian caviar from my web site and there are 1.3 million takers does that prove "there is a large untapped market" for Beluga Caviar?
And elsewhere some rather more rigorous research comes up with thought provoking results which I would have thought would have been of interest to critics, composers and consultants at a major orchestra management conference:
"Music downloading creates listener apathy - internet downloading and MP3 players are creating a generation of people who do not seriously appreciate songs or musical performances, British researchers said. "The accessibility of music has meant that it is taken for granted and does not require a deep emotional commitment once associated with music appreciation," said music psychologist Adrian North. "
From research by the University of Leicester that monitored 346 people over two weeks to evalauate how they relate to music. In the light of this research it is amazing just how prophetic were the words of that great composer Benjamin Britten forty-two years ago:
"Anyone, anywhere, at any time can listen to the B minor Mass upon one condition only - that they possess a machine. No qualification is required of any sort - faith, virtue, education, experience, age. Music is now free for all. If I say the loudspeaker is the principal enemy of music, I don't mean that I am not grateful to it as a means of education or study, or as an evoker of memories. But it is not part of true musical experience. Regarded as such it is simply a substitute, and dangerous because deluding. Music demands more from a listener than simply the possession of a tape-machine or a transistor radio. It demands some preparation, some effort, a journey to a special place, saving up for a ticket, some homework on the programme perhaps, some clarification of the ears and sharpening of the instincts. It demands as much effort on the listener's part as the other two corners of the triangle, this holy triangle of composer, performer and listener."
Report broken links, missing images and other errors to - overgrownpath at hotmail dot co dot uk
If you enjoyed this post take An Overgrown Path to Is classical music too cheap?