It all seemed to happen so fast once it got started. For some time now, the ACO staff has been getting ready for the EarShot/Colorado Symphony New Music Readings. First there were the 180 scores that arrived in the office. Then there was the announcement about the four winners, followed by all sorts of detailed preparatory activities, followed by packing and getting to the airport to come out here to Denver.
What is truly wonderful about this is just how much all the work was worth it. First of all, there is the Colorado Symphony Orchestra who took on this tremendous project. They are a fantastic ensemble, and to have them embrace this initiative and offer the Readings is another reason to have more hope for the future of new music. And when I hear conductors David Gier and Fergus Macleod, mentor composers Derek Bermel, Robert Beaser, Roberto Sierra, VP for Artistic Planning Alberto Gutierrez, and Meet The Composer’s president Ed Harsh all supporting the four composers and genuinely wanting to help, it feels like we are indeed a community.
On Wednesday, after we arrived, we held a session primarily about promoting one’s music. It turned out that the question “how do I promote my music without offending the people I’m promoting it to” is still a hurdle for composers. (It’s good to know that composers care.) All of the folks listed above and a few others in the room did their best to convince these four that they can do it and offered “insider” advice on how to go about it. And if the advice is something the composers feel they can follow through on, I look forward to seeing what these four creative minds come up with.
-Lyn Liston, Director of Marketing, Education, and Outreach, American Composers Orchestra
1. Tim Sullivan (composer) and Fergus Macleod (conductor) review Tim’s score before the second reading of his piece Polychrome.