It seems that at least once a week, I see or hear a conversation among composers that goes something like this:
composer 1: Nobody ever comes to our concerts.
composer 2: Tell me about it. I spend months writing a piece. Then, I have to beg performers to practice, rehearse and perform it. I tell everybody I know, put up flyers, and after all that effort, only a dozen people show up to hear the thing. Heck, there are usually more people on the stage than in the audience!
composer 1: Why doesn’t anybody support new music?
There are a lot of reasons people don’t go to recitals or concerts. I understand people are busy. But this Monday night, I went to a composition recital by Matt Karram, a talented undergraduate composer here at MSU. I don’t know how many students are in the composition studio, but it’s at least twenty. At Matt’s recital, I counted no more than five composers (outside of Matt).
How can we expect other people to support new music when we don’t even support each other? It’s simple. We can’t.