This concept, for a library music series, started with a presentation at the Deanwood Library, here in DC, of a session on “ragtime” –as Eubie Blake called it; he’d use that word all his life, unable to utter the term ‘jazz’ because of its unsavory connotations, which he learned from his days playing the keyboard at a bordello..
The world gets smaller; shivers run round the globe in a matter of hours –whether economic, or tectonic. There is also some sense of far reaching synchronicity; looking for it, in arts programming, is a way of discovering partners who might be far flung in proximity, but share ideological synergy; partners who aim to connect within local community needs, and create programs that are flexible, sustainable, and resonate with celebration of the local society. Regardless of how distant such models are reaching out brings home commonality.
Politics aside, I found myself watching Tavis Smiley the other day, because of Jessey Norman, glowing in hot pink, looking fresh and very lively, in conversation with him regarding her upcoming concert with an emerging new orchestra, MUSE/IQUE, in Pasadena, and attesting that, despite the classical music industry’s continuing bad news with regards to the fiscal health of so many of the more established music makers, there is also a current in this country, trying to ignite new opportun
A little over a month ago, the Washington National Opera company announced its merger with the Kennedy Center. For the 2011 Fall season, and beyond, the company will be considered part of the family, and have permanent residence in the quadrant of spaces which includes housing for the National Symphony, presentation residency of the National Ballet, Millennium Stage, and adjacent theater spaces, used for Jazz, visual arts, and other touring production companies of plays and musicals. At the time of discussions, I would suspect that this all looked pretty reasonable on paper.