The presenter of KALW 91.7 San Francisco's Music from Other Minds Richard Friedman has posted a perceptive comment on my post about Seda Röder's new CD of contemporary Turkish piano music. In it Richard asks how is it possible for deserving music such as this to reach an audience today? Which chimes with the view expressed by Bálint András Varga in his introduction to Three Questions for Sixty-Five Composers:
In addition, the interviews highlight...the tremendous significance of the radio as a provider of inspiration. Nowadays when radio stations are starved of financial resources and tend to ignore minority interests (which contemporary music no doubt represents), the statements of many composers regarding the fundamental role music broadcasts have played in their lives ought to make editors stop to ponder whether they are doing the right thing.The first of the three questions which Bálint András Varga directs to sixty-five leading contemporary composers is:
Have you had an experience similar to Witold Lutoslawski's? He heard John Cage's Second Piano Concerto on the radio - an encounter which changed his musical thinking and ushered in a new creative period, the first result of which was his Jeux vénitiens.Instead of making this post yet another lament for the good old days of radio let's turn it into a celebration of the power of the medium. Lutoslawski heard Cage on the radio and the direction of contemporary music changed. Are any readers prepared to share similar but more modest encounters that changed their musical thinking? Here is my starter for ten - driving to work in 1975 I was knocked sideways by the music that was being played on BBC Radio 3. It was Edmund Rubbra's Fifth Symphony. That chance encounter with a composer I was not familiar with took me down a musical path that has resonated far beyond this little blog. Have you had a similar experience?
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