This is not music. This is torture.

The Audition

When I think of all the musicians I know and admire — Gabriela Montero, Mark Wood, Zoe Keating, Billy Joel — who had violent allergic reactions to this sort of horror, and the astonishing greatness they achieved once they rejected it, it becomes obvious that this sort of garbage stands in direct opposition to everything that music is. This is evil.

I am so, so, so glad that I never once in my life conceived of myself as part of it. Music for me was a handcraft I engaged in while I worked toward an academic goal. My horror came there, but it was not this. This truly is fucked up.

It’s almost starting to look like a predictor for the achievement of originality and greatness in music is whether one has ever been chewed up and spit out by the mainstream classical music culture. I am 100% positive that Beethoven, Mozart, Bach, Liszt, Chopin, Tchaikovsky, etc. would have had run screaming from this. (“To play a wrong note is insignificant. To play without passion is inexcusable.”) This is “The Pit and the Pendulum” made real.

And once again I look skyward and observe that the classical music culture whines about how The Age Of The Great Composers Is Over. Maybe it wouldn’t be if they stopped ejecting them from their walled garden to bloom in other soils.