For most of us at Longy, the very center of what we do is performing. Not only do we like to do it, but we are all extremely talented and good at it. There is no reason we shouldn't be trying to bring our specific skills the public. We have much to offer the public and I think it would be beneficial for ourselves and our colleagues to do something that can set us apart from the rest. What I am proposing is the creation of our own Modern Consortium.
Consortium or consort, by cliche, will sometimes tip people off to very old renaissance music and with more era-appropriate instrumentation. That's not what I'm getting at. My desire is to see a collection of chamber groups playing a wide variety of music together in concert - nothing original, but we don't always have to be original to succeed. The groups will work together to book venues, advertise the concerts and help bring awareness to what we are dong. To start out everyone will work with their specific chamber group and each member of each group will have the responsibility of booking one show. If there were three to four groups, of lets say 8-12 people that would give you anywhere from 2-3 months of consistent work.
Concerts could be themed to more modern 20th and 21st century music with exceptions being made once in a while if it's consistent with the program. The idea would be to perform regularly, lets say 4-5 times a month. At first it would be a little rough cause we wouldn't have the amount of material necessary to do this, but think about the possibilities after a year. If four or five groups played together for a year we would have enough material to fill multiple concerts at the same time. Groups can mix and match with other groups, play longer or shorter concerts, and have a different theme to each show all with the underlying purpose of moving forward with the music.
It's hard to see how anything we do in this context is a step in the wrong direction. Something like this is exactly what we, as performers, and modern music need. There is a lot more going on at Longy than classical music. I see people who are in to Jazz and R&B, Bluegrass, people who write and perform folk and pop music, electronic music and probably some others I've missed. Wouldn't it be great to blend that all together in one concert? I see an endless road of possibilities with this and if done right, it could be the start of something new and important. I have a guitar duo and a guitar/voice duo ready to roll. Who's with me?
My questions to Dean Chin:
1.) Lets say this Modern Consortium actually took off. Would Longy be willing to help us get the word out and advertise our performances on their website?
2.) As a performer, What flaws do you see in the modern concert atmosphere?
3.) What sort of realistic changes could you make?