There was a piece in the NYTimes today about standard repertory in opera and classical music. It touches on many of the issues we bat abaout here, and is, I think, worth a read.
Classics and New Work Through Fresh Ears
Of all the performing arts, classical music has been the most hopelessly bound to past repertory. It's essential for those who want this art form to have a future as well as a history to encourage new work and cajole ensembles, orchestras and opera companies into supporting living composers.
Yet such calls are not meant as a criticism of the standard repertory. These works have survived for a reason. The problem is that repertory staples are trotted out too often for their own good. It's easy to let performances of standard repertory sound standardized. To recapture the impact of staples like Tchaikovsky's "Pathétique" Symphony or Bizet's "Carmen," performers must reconnect to the daring and timeless elements in these works.
Another take on reviving the classics
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