11 Dec 2019

The death of classical music? We don’t think so

by Kathleen Sykes

Professional musicians live in a sphere of inspiration—their craft satisfies them, and they want to share it with the world. In recent years, the community of classical musicians and fans have expressed concern about the death of classical music. Associate Conductor, Conner Gray Covington, has something to say about that. He believes that the future of classical music is bright and believes that great live music is the key to genuine connection in this day and age.

As a classical musician, one of the things I’m most passionate about right now is rethinking the concert experience. I wholeheartedly believe the music we play is some of the greatest art ever created. However, because so many people are often intimidated by the “traditions” that go along with a classical music concert (e.g. when to clap, what to wear, etc.), it is often more difficult to get people into the concert hall than it should be. As musicians, we have to rethink how we package the concert experience and do everything we can to make people comfortable coming to hear the symphony.

We live in an age that is inundated by the internet and social media, and I believe that most people are using social media to try to connect with others. However, at the end of the day, that “connection” is more with a screen than it is a truly human connection. It is the illusion of a connection. Many people seem to be realizing this—I think this presents a huge opportunity for the orchestra to be a place to promote a genuine sense of community and connection.

There is nothing on the internet that can rival the powerful emotions and communal experience brought about by sitting in a concert hall with thousands of other people and hearing a great orchestra play something like a Mahler symphony.

Come see Conner perform in Debussy’s “La mer” this season. Get your tickets here.