Seeing orchestral music played live is a marvellous thing. Years ago I wrote about how uplifting watching an orchestra can be, as opposed to just listening to a recording.
If only the same could be said for being in an orchestra. Here’s an impassioned account from Kate Wagner of the heartache and struggle you face when you come up against the “myth of meritocracy”.
Strike with the band
Classical music is cruel not because there are winners and losers, first chairs and second chairs, but because it lies about the fact that these winners and losers are chosen long before the first moment a young child picks up an instrument. It doesn’t matter if you study composition, devote years to an instrument, or simply have the desire to teach—either at the university level or in the public school system. If you come from a less-than-wealthy family, or from a place other than the wealthiest cities, the odds are stacked against you no matter how much you sacrifice, how hard you work, or, yes, how talented you are.