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What classical groups will be left in San Diego?

Listen to Bruckner, Beerhoven, Mahler, Wagner in the meantime

There are some real concerns out there regarding the future of many classical music organizations. I don’t want to come off as unsympathetic, but the destruction of these organizations by the COVID-19 situation won’t mean that much in the grand scope of classical music .

Organizations in large urban settings will continue to survive. I think the San Diego Symphony and San Diego Opera will be okay, but if things end up going badly, my personal experience of classical music will remain somewhat unchanged.

Many of us listen to classical music all day every day. That habit is the primary function of classical music fans. Going to the symphony or opera is a secondary function. Of the two, live opera has the most to gain over its recorded version.

If COVID-19 takes out our San Diego music organizations, I'll travel to LA. I used to regularly travel up to Los Angeles to go to the LA Philharmonic and LA Opera. I would rather travel a few minutes instead of a few hours, but without a local option, I’d travel for concerts in Orange County or LA.

The one thing missing when listening to recordings is any sense of excitement in the room. There is no buzz in the air when watching an opera on YouTube. Yet I’m afraid this is going to be our reality for the foreseeable future.

Before the shelter-in-place order was put in place, attendance was down at the early March concerts I went to. Classical music audiences, as has been discussed to no end, tend to be seniors. As we all know, seniors are more susceptible to complications from COVID-19.

Are audiences going to come straight back to the concert hall? I’d like to think so, but I don’t see that happening. No, ticket sales aren’t the entire picture. However, there needs to be an audience.

Who is going to support concerts which have no audience? Without an audience, there won’t be any funding unless our local, state, and federal governments suddenly decide to channel public money toward classical music.

I’m afraid I don’t have any answers for how this will settle. I know that my primary enjoyment of classical music will continue to be daily listening to recordings.

Included here are YouTube videos of some of my favorite recordings.

Video:

Anton Bruckner - Symphony No. 7 in E Major

Münchner Philharmoniker conducted by Sergiu Celibidache
Live Suntory Hall, Tokyo 18 October 1990

Münchner Philharmoniker conducted by Sergiu Celibidache Live Suntory Hall, Tokyo 18 October 1990

Video:

Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade

Gergiev · Vienna Philharmonic · Salzburg Festival 2005

Gergiev · Vienna Philharmonic · Salzburg Festival 2005

Video:

Mahler - Symphony No.2

Simon Bolivar Symphony Orchestra - Gustavo Dudamel

Simon Bolivar Symphony Orchestra - Gustavo Dudamel

Video:

Beethoven: Symphony No.9

Solti – London Philharmonic Orchestra

Solti – London Philharmonic Orchestra

Video:

Tristan und Isolde

WWV 90, Act III: Act III Scene 3

WWV 90, Act III: Act III Scene 3

Video:

Il Pagliacci

Mario del Monaco & Gabriella Tucci - No! Pagliaccio non son! - Tokyo 1961

Mario del Monaco & Gabriella Tucci - No! Pagliaccio non son! - Tokyo 1961

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There are some real concerns out there regarding the future of many classical music organizations. I don’t want to come off as unsympathetic, but the destruction of these organizations by the COVID-19 situation won’t mean that much in the grand scope of classical music .

Organizations in large urban settings will continue to survive. I think the San Diego Symphony and San Diego Opera will be okay, but if things end up going badly, my personal experience of classical music will remain somewhat unchanged.

Many of us listen to classical music all day every day. That habit is the primary function of classical music fans. Going to the symphony or opera is a secondary function. Of the two, live opera has the most to gain over its recorded version.

If COVID-19 takes out our San Diego music organizations, I'll travel to LA. I used to regularly travel up to Los Angeles to go to the LA Philharmonic and LA Opera. I would rather travel a few minutes instead of a few hours, but without a local option, I’d travel for concerts in Orange County or LA.

The one thing missing when listening to recordings is any sense of excitement in the room. There is no buzz in the air when watching an opera on YouTube. Yet I’m afraid this is going to be our reality for the foreseeable future.

Before the shelter-in-place order was put in place, attendance was down at the early March concerts I went to. Classical music audiences, as has been discussed to no end, tend to be seniors. As we all know, seniors are more susceptible to complications from COVID-19.

Are audiences going to come straight back to the concert hall? I’d like to think so, but I don’t see that happening. No, ticket sales aren’t the entire picture. However, there needs to be an audience.

Who is going to support concerts which have no audience? Without an audience, there won’t be any funding unless our local, state, and federal governments suddenly decide to channel public money toward classical music.

I’m afraid I don’t have any answers for how this will settle. I know that my primary enjoyment of classical music will continue to be daily listening to recordings.

Included here are YouTube videos of some of my favorite recordings.

Video:

Anton Bruckner - Symphony No. 7 in E Major

Münchner Philharmoniker conducted by Sergiu Celibidache
Live Suntory Hall, Tokyo 18 October 1990

Münchner Philharmoniker conducted by Sergiu Celibidache Live Suntory Hall, Tokyo 18 October 1990

Video:

Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade

Gergiev · Vienna Philharmonic · Salzburg Festival 2005

Gergiev · Vienna Philharmonic · Salzburg Festival 2005

Video:

Mahler - Symphony No.2

Simon Bolivar Symphony Orchestra - Gustavo Dudamel

Simon Bolivar Symphony Orchestra - Gustavo Dudamel

Video:

Beethoven: Symphony No.9

Solti – London Philharmonic Orchestra

Solti – London Philharmonic Orchestra

Video:

Tristan und Isolde

WWV 90, Act III: Act III Scene 3

WWV 90, Act III: Act III Scene 3

Video:

Il Pagliacci

Mario del Monaco & Gabriella Tucci - No! Pagliaccio non son! - Tokyo 1961

Mario del Monaco & Gabriella Tucci - No! Pagliaccio non son! - Tokyo 1961

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Comments
4

nice

April 30, 2020
This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.
May 2, 2020

The bottom line is, classical music needs younger generations to start liking and appreciating it. Not sure how to make that happen.

May 3, 2020
This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.
May 8, 2020

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