All kinds of reasons to love Amy Beach's "Gaelic" Symphony!

All kinds of reasons to love Amy Beach's "Gaelic" Symphony!

Paired with a work by Stanford in Irish-themed evening An edited and shortened version of this article appeared in the Boston Musical Intelligencer. The Boston Globe had an exciting piece last week in anticipation of the performance of Beach’s “Gaelic” by the Mercury Orchestra on August 7.  The Mercury Orchestra‘s performance of Beach’s monumental work emphasizes that the grass-roots momentum of recognizing Beach’s achievement continues to build.  In anticipation of the concert I had a few more pertinent thoughts to share. A local-history sidebar pertaining to the venue, the Hatch Shell: The Aug. 7 performance takes place 20 years after the…

The Impact of The Women's Philharmonic: Pamela Wilson

The Impact of The Women's Philharmonic: Pamela Wilson

We received this beautiful testimonial from Pamela Wilson a while — OK, over a year — ago. What a fantastic statement of the unexpected and ongoing resonances of The Women’s Philharmonic! Thank you, Pamela! Pamela Wilson works in advancement at Connecticut College and is the founder and director of the New London Drone Orchestra. The group performed in the 24 Hour Drone in Hudson, New York, April 28-29, 2018. Pamela also takes percussion lessons and plays in the College’s New Music Ensemble. As DJ Kitty Empire, she hosts a freeform music show on Sunday nights on WCNI-FM, where she also…

2019-2020 Season Follow Up

2019-2020 Season Follow Up

We recently posted our initial findings for the data we collected from the 2019-2020 season, and have received many comments and questions, and I’ll answer as many as I can! We were asked was any composer besides Beethoven had more works performed than the total number of works by women composers.  The short answer is no.  The longer, more complicated answer is that Mozart came close (at almost 5% of all the works being heard) and that just a handful of 20 dead, white, male composers make up over 50% of all the total programming.  This pie graph is dizzying,…

Camellia Symphony Celebrates Black History Month

Camellia Symphony Celebrates Black History Month

I hope you are having a great Black History Month!   I know I am, and as part of my celebration I attended the Camellia Symphony Orchestra‘s concert, titled Past, Present, and Future. An ambitious and excellent community orchestra in Sacramento, they offered an exciting program on Saturday in celebration of Black History Month. Now in their 56th season, the Camellias performed in the regal auditorium of the C.K. McClatchy High School.  The program featured music by Florence Price, Julia Perry, William Grant Still, and Chris Castro.  It’s a challenging proposition for an orchestra to put forward a whole program of not-very…