News and music to start your week!

Michael Morgan, music director of the Oakland Symphony, is seen at his home in Oakland, Calif. on Thursday, Dec. 10, 2020.

We are saddened at the passing of conductor Michael Morgan, pictured above, who served at the Oakland Symphony since 1991.  The Oakland Symphony became a model for other ensembles who sought to engage not only their audience but wider communities, to have music that is representative of the true history and diversity of the western classical canon.  Remembrances are being shared on Twitter from those who knew him and played under his baton, and the San Francisco Chronicle Datebook has a remembrance. And listen to Morgan conducting the (all-Black) Gateways Festival Orchestra in Florence Price’s Symphony no. 3 in 2019.

A music teacher from Valencia has put together an interactive map featuring more than 500 women composers from around the world.  Sakira Ventura took on the project to highlight the work and music that is too often forgotten, and has created an interactive experience that includes short biographies and examples of their work.  Learn more at The Guardian and explore the map for yourself here.

The return of power to the Taliban in Afghanistan means uncertainty for the future of music schools that had been flourishing for the past two decades in the country.  Listen in to Weekend Edition with Elizabeth Blair to learn more about the current fears that are held by students and teachers.

The Hollywood Reporter shares that NBCUniversal has selected a new class of participants for its Diverse Composers Program, providing opportunities for underrepresented composers to gain real world experience and exposure composing for film and television. The first cohort (which ran from 2018-2020) have all already earned production credits.

And Anna Clyne, Ayanna Witter-Johnson, and Errollyn Wallen talk with Classical FM about their roles as composer at this year’s Edinburgh International Festival.  Of course, they discuss creativity in the middle of a pandemic, the future of women in classical music, and what more can be done to highlight underrepresented voices.

Listen on Thurs. Aug. 26 (7 pm EDT) to the Zagreb Philharmonic performing Contemporary Works for Orchestra, including music by Shirley Mier, Rain Worthington and Kamala Sankaram, in an event produced by Parma Recordings.

What did we miss?  What are you listening to?  Let us know at