I’m a thinker, a teacher, and an artist. Always learning, always expanding what I do. Always trying to help.
I write music that’s probing and varied, unique and appealing. Hear what I’ve done.
My latest news:
As I said here earlier:
I’ve been quiet lately. Not storming the world with ideas about the future of classical music. Just peacefully teaching at Juilliard (remotely, of course), doing some composing, doing some consulting.
So now a new semester begins at Juilliard. With all of us teaching in-person, for the first time in a year and a half.
And something new came up in my class. Each fall I teach a course called “Speaking of Music: How to Talk and Write About It.”
In the opening class (and also in my spring course on the future of classical music), I always ask my students why they’re taking the course.
This time, they were almost unanimous. Student after student said they couldn’t explain what they do in classical music to people close to them, and wanted to learn how to do it.
The people close to them included friends, parents, and one student’s girlfriend. Of course this reflects one of classical music’s larger problems, its need to reach a new and larger audience.
But if you can’t explain classical music to your own family, and to others you’re close to — that brings the crisis right home. Makes it personal.
So I think we should rejigger the course, and make this a class project. How to explain classical music — or, more personally, what each of my students does in classical music — to the people around us.
The way to do it may be different for everyone in the class, since my students are all individuals, who think about their music in many different ways. Though of course there will be many thoughts they’ll all have.
I’m so much looking forward to this! The course will have its strongest focus ever, and my students — if we do this well — will get something so strongly helpful from it.