When Classical Goes Digital
Digital has marked classical performances and we can see that many of the pioneers in the industry are from the classical world. For Jeffrey Kahane, conductor for many major American orchestras, it is “easy”; He has more than 100 scores on his iPad and he knows he has avoided many risks associated with using paper sheet music.
“Here I am trying to recreate the spirit of an 18th-century performance of a Mozart symphony, and I’m using an iPad.’ But why not?”
Actually, Mozart was a pioneer of his time because he didn’t conduct from the podium or use a baton. According to Kahane, he conducted from the keyboard when leading his operas or performing his piano concertos. This practice helped create “more of the atmosphere and style and sound and rhythmic character that is appropriate to the music.” So today, to achieve the same sound and style, Mozart would have used an iPad to conduct.
As much as the graphite pencil, in the second half of the 19th Century, changed how a musician interacted with the musical text, the iPad improves their performance on stage and during rehearsals. The Royal Academy of Music had an exhibition organized by Peter Sheppard-Skaerved, a
Let’s look at the major positive changes technology has brought to classical musicians…
1) Classical musicians are closer to historical sources
That is why, Wu Han, one of the artistic directors of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center says « Now everyone is a detective »; everyone looks for clues of the composer’s intentions. No need to wait for months to go to the library, the Beethoven-Haus in Bonn, Germany, for instance, has digitalized all of its
2) The technology is “changing the culture a little bit”
According to Dan Visconti,
3) Education: democratization of music knowledge
There are master classes from world class professional soloists and artists online, new techniques to teach music and improved interactive music lessons.
For example, the University of