As early as fall 2008, I began imagining Wall to Wall Behind the Wall: Music from the Soviet Era on May 15, 2010. I started with repertoire, the amazing wealth of music coming from Central and Eastern Europe that, to my mind, ear, and heart, comprises some of the most powerful, beautiful and important music composed in the past 75 years.
It was important to me to represent many different nationalities, musical aesthetics, and political viewpoints over the course of the day. Also critical was creating a nice flow – solo and chamber, vocal and orchestral, lyrical versus angular, consonant versus dissonant, overtly political versus subversive or apolitical, popular versus obscure, standard repertoire by great masters versus newer works by younger composers who came of age during a transitional period.
Questions I was often asked included “how did you choose who is performing” and “why did you decide on what is being performed?” The answer to these questions is, of course, all that is involved in the art of curating – making interesting choices as to artists and repertoire and then building a project – be it a series or a festival or a whole season, or in the case of Wall to Wall, a daylong marathon.
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