We’ve still got music

By Miranda Wilson

I should remind myself not to look at social media right after an appalling tragedy, because reading the same meaningless platitudes (“thoughts and prayers”) again and again makes me feel so hopeless and powerless and enraged. But for me, a day without social media is like a day without oxygen, so of course I looked.

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The next chapter: Bach on five strings

By Miranda Wilson

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My first Luis & Clark cello, which my puppy loves almost as much as I do.

Bach’s six suites for solo cello have been a major research area of mine for a long time now. After much reflection, I’ve decided to play my first ever marathon concert of all six suites in the upcoming Idaho Bach Festival.

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To smile, or not to smile?

happy face

By Miranda Wilson

Many years ago, I attended a summer chamber music school whose faculty were top international artists. During one of the daily masterclasses, a young piano trio performed the Brahms C major op. 87. The piece has its difficulties, and every time the players got through one of the tricky spots, they would look up from their scores and grin broadly at each other.

After they’d finished, a couple of the faculty yelled at them. They said it was not appropriate to pull those wild grinning faces, that it was unprofessional, that it detracted from the music.

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“Canon-Splaining”: Harvard’s Curriculum Change and the Formerly Sacred Cows of Academic Music

cow

By Miranda Wilson

Harvard University’s music department recently caused some controversy in academic music circles with a plan to change their undergraduate curriculum in a way that eliminated certain core theory requirements and included some previously neglected topics such as world musics and pop.

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A different three Rs

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A sign I saw on a school visit

There exist a number of websites for complaining professors. OK, everyone needs to vent sometimes: goodness knows professors have the right to be a bit peeved about low pay, budget cuts, departmental skulduggery and so on. Whether the internet is an appropriate forum for such complaints is another matter; I figure they’re grown-ups and if they want to put themselves out there for public scrutiny and possible damage to their careers, that’s their business.

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