I stand corrected on several issues. Let me say a few things.
1. While symphonic concerts are expensive, there is the collegiate level. I agree that the idea of the high school band during an assembly turns off most people from classical, as this is the primary association they have with this so called “classical” music. However, the collegiate level is the perfect place for people to experience great classical music for very cheap, often free. You posed the question, “How are the common people going to learn of such things?” I suggest that they would learn of such things by any sort of traditional advertisement, a poster or whatnot, but particularly the internet. Of course the common people aren’t necessarily looking for such music. So they don’t find it. So, Haugh Performing Arts Center remains largely empty yet again. This would be the perfect place for one to familiarize themselves with classical, at a much higher level than that of the high school band, and at a much cheaper price than that of the Los Angeles Philharmonic.
2. While I agree that driving in a car or listening from iPod headphones is hardly the appropriate listening equiptment for classical music, you make it seem as though listening requires thousands of dollars of expensive sound equiptment. Of course, the higher quality equiptment, the better, but you don’t have to have your own personal Devin Sheets in order to enjoy classical. A decent pair of $15 Sony headphones will get the job done just fine. However, no one does this. The desire for classical is not there. If someone really wanted to enjoy classical music, there are plenty of opportunites for them to do so, but if you don’t have the desire, you aren’t going to use any of these methods whatsoever.
3. I absolutely agree about today’s entertainment being focused on multiple senses. In some cases, such as the “4D” attractions, not only does the consumer see the video in 3d, hear the sound, but they experience things such as odd smells and spritzes of water in the face. I also agree with the value of movies. They are very valuable, especially the soundtracks of these movies. The argument could be made that movie scores have become the classical music of our era. I suppose then that movies would be our Opera as well.
4. Yes, classical music listeners do tend to be elitists. Unfortunately, when one thinks of a classical music listener, images are drummed up of an Old man wearing glasses, smoking a pipe, wearing his suit, walking with his cane that he does not need, perhaps having just come from a steak dinner at an expensive restaurant. While it is this way, I truly wish it weren’t. And while I myself do not fit this stereotypical description, I do enjoy classical music. It is a big disappointment to me to see people who do not care about classical whatsoever and scuff it off as “boring”. It is anything but that. As I said before, classical requires much more depth, an understanding of what is going on. It is a shame that more people do not understand it.I too hope that one day classical music and our society will one day merge.
I stand corrected on several issues, such as classical music originally not being as popular as I had described it. However, on a few things I disagree on a few things as far as the means to getting the music to the people. It is not impossible for everyone to listen to classical music. But the desire for it and the appreciation and understanding of it is not there. I am not blanketing the entire generation as “evil” by any means, I am simply saying that our generation takes continually more and more to satisfy and entertain. Classical music cannot compete in a world of the multiple senses multimedia. The times are changing and classical music is not. And that is a tragedy. Some of the finest art ever created is being largely ignored.I’m not sure I would classify American Culture as “beautiful”. Of course, that is another discussion for another day.