Friday, January 18, 2013

Niche work if you can get it


Contradicting yourself is healthy, or at least that is what I am going to plead. So, having made an Olympic sport out of denigrating Twitter I will now read much significance into the level of Twitter activity generated by yesterday’s post about Claude Vivier. Rightly or wrongly Vivier is a marginal figure, yet the Twitter activity triggered by my piece surpassed that generated by articles about more mainstream composers. And it was not just the quantity that was impressive, the Twitter users that spread the word about Claude Vivier carry considerably more weight in my book than the self-styled cultural commentators who earn a living biting the industry that feeds them. But I really should not be surprised at the level of interest in that marginal post, because it simply confirms the mass market fallacy. Classical music is just an agglomeration of niches, and the smart way to sell it is to target the niches and forget about the non-existent mass market. And talking of niches, I will now contradict myself again and highlight another of those celebrations that are so often criticised here. Witold Lutoslawki – seen above – was born on January 25, 1913. I took to the road with him back in 2009.

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