May 29, 2013

Classical:NEXT opening concert

Tonight was the opening of the 2nd "Classical: NEXT" conference, this time in Vienna, Austria.
I'm thrilled to be attending as it promises to be a great event of inspiration and connection regarding the present and future state of classical music.

The concert that opened the conference tonight featured keynote speaker, violinist Daniel Hope. I'll write about his wonderful speech in another post. The musical portions of the concert are what I'd like to refer to in this post.

I particularly enjoyed the performances of Chorus Sine Nomine and violinist Benjamin Schmid. The other performers were great but these were for me the stand-outs.

As this conference is in part about taking a close and analytical look at classical concerts in order to determine potential new directions for classical artists and organizations, I found myself reflecting upon what the characteristics of tonight's concert were that pleased me. To that end, I made a bit of a list (on which I welcome comments and additions):
  • surprise 
  • the use of space in creative ways
  • movement, and movement through space 
  • hidden performers 
  • theatricality 
  • humour 
  • re-arranged music (not necessarily in its original form) 
  • short pieces 
  • spontaneity  
  • fun, camaraderie
  • passion 
  • focus, energy 
  • most importantly, EXCELLENCE

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