'They're among the world's oldest living things. The climate crisis is killing them.' That was the title of John Branch's 2020 article in The New York Times about the redwoods, giant sequoias and Joshua trees that perished in the deadly California wildfires of that year. The artistic director of a sustainability-focused arts organization located on a university campus in Southern California responded to this story by commissioning music devoted to the trees – beloved icons of the American West. What does this musical response to a piece of journalism say about the role of artists in a challenge as far-reaching as the climate crisis? Find out by attending Can Technology and Art Inspire Change? - The New York Times' one-day climate event on Wednesday 12 October 2022, 09:00-18:30 PT in San Francisco. The event consists of three performances and a panel discussion, and is free to attend virtually: www.nytimes.com/article/climate-event.html
Berlin-based pianist and conductor Daniel Barenboim announced via Twitter on 4 October 2022 that he was 'taking a step back from some of my performing activities, especially conducting engagements, for the coming months'. The nearly-seventy-nine-year-old Argentinian-born musician went on to explain that he had been diagnosed with a 'serious neurological condition' and must focus on his physical well-being as much as possible.
ISM (previously the Incorporated Society of Musicians), the UK's long-serving professional body for musicians, has changed its name to the 'Independent Society of Musicians'. Vick Bain, the ISM's president, commented: 'The word "independent" is central to everything we do so I welcome the new name. It reflects who we are and what we do.' During recent years the ISM has played an important lobbying role within all four nations of the UK, campaigning particularly heavily against the negative role for musicians of the UK's departure from the European Union and also the cutting back of music education, particularly in schools.
The Edinburgh International Festival has announced full details of a series of films available in November 2022, which form the festival's digital programme series, Edinburgh International Festival At Home. The programme is available free, worldwide, and features sixteen videos, released throughout November 2022. The series includes the short film series Edinburgh is a Story, named after a newly commissioned poem by Hannah Lavery. Further information: eif.co.uk
During the course of his forty-plus-year career, award-winning composer and conductor Michael Shapiro has never before had two works in performance as far apart in subject as those coming up this season. Timed for Halloween is a new rendition of Shapiro's musical score set to the movie Frankenstein, the only work of its kind to support the 1931 classic silent film. Shapiro will conduct and the LA Opera Orchestra will perform. Members of the opera's Domingo-Colburn-Stein Young Artist Program will sing Shapiro's brand new libretto to complement his work. The event will happen live at The Theatre at Ace Hotel in Los Angeles, USA, on 28 and 29 October 2022. The audience is invited to come in costume. Additionally, on Thursday 10 November 2022, the first performance of Shapiro's latest requiem, Voices, timed to coincide with the anniversary of Kristallnacht, will take place at New York City's iconic Central Synagogue - 652 Lexington Avenue, East 55th Street. Paul Shaffer, best-known as David Letterman's musical director, will introduce the event, which will also be livestreamed. The performance features Daniel Mutlu, the Senior Cantor of Central Synagogue, Ember Choral Arts and the American Modern Ensemble, conducted by Deborah Simpkin King.
Posted 8 October 2022 by Keith Bramich