6th October: Orchestras looking for black composers, Chloé Briot files suit, Opera singer honours Breonna Taylors, Salzburg Festival receives millions

Tuesday 6th October 2020

Orchestras Are Rushing to Add Black Composers. Will it last?

In June, as millions of Americans filled city streets with Black Lives Matter demonstrations and millions more rushed to share their solidarity online, the composer Jessie Montgomery noticed something unusual.

Orchestras across the country, already in upheaval because of the coronavirus pandemic and in the process of improvising new seasons, were asking to perform her music. A lot of orchestras: By the end of this year, her works will have been programmed more than twice as much as they were in 2019.

“I’m sort of flabbergasted, to be honest with you,” Ms. Montgomery, who is Black, said in an interview. “It’s also happening with my Black colleagues. They’re getting a lot more attention. It’s clearly a response.”

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Chloé Briot : “Pour l’instant, je ne sais pas si j’ai encore envie de chanter”

La soprano Chloé Briot a décidé de briser la loi du silence en portant plainte pour harcèlement et agressions sexuelles contre un baryton avec qui elle a partagé la scène à de nombreuses reprises de septembre 2019 à février dernier durant L’Inondation de Francesco Filidei et de Joel Pommerat.

Le 19 août dernier, La Lettre du Musicien publiait un article, où la soprano Chloé Briot relatait les agressions sexuelles répétées dont elle a été victime lors de la création de L’Inondation de Joël Pommerat et Francesco Filidei, donnée à l’Opéra-Comique puis à Rennes et Nantes. Dans ce spectacle, la chanteuse incarnait une femme mariée à un autre chanteur. C’est contre ce dernier que Chloé Briot a décidé de porter plainte en mars dernier.

Alors que la “situation dérapa” avec son partenaire sur scène qui “allait au-delà du cadre des propositions du metteur en scène”, Chloé Briot demanda à ce qu’on fasse cesser les agissements de son collègue. Or, “personne n’a semblé réagir”. Quelques mois plus tard, à la reprise de cette production à Rennes, Chloé Briot déclara que ce chanteur continua ses attouchements et ses propos déplacés. Ainsi, à la demande de la soprano, Matthieu Rietzler, le directeur de l’Opéra de Rennes a donc mis en place un protocole pour les que les deux chanteurs ne se croisent plus ailleurs que sur le plateau.

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Chloé Briot : “For the moment, I don’t know if I still feel like singing “

Soprano Chloé Briot has decided to break the law of silence by filing a complaint for harassment and sexual assault against a baritone with whom she shared the stage on numerous occasions from September 2019 to February this year during L’Inondation by Francesco Filidei and Joel Pommerat.

On 19 August last, La Lettre du Musicien published an article in which soprano Chloé Briot recounted the repeated sexual assaults to which she was subjected during the premiere of L’Inondation by Joël Pommerat and Francesco Filidei, performed at the Opéra-Comique and then in Rennes and Nantes. In this show, the singer played a woman married to another singer. It was against the latter that Chloé Briot decided to file a complaint last March.

When the “situation got out of hand” with her partner on stage who “went beyond the director’s proposals”, Chloé Briot asked for her colleague’s actions to be stopped. However, “no one seemed to react”. A few months later, when this production resumed in Rennes, Chloé Briot declared that the singer continued his touching and inappropriate remarks. Thus, at the request of the soprano, Matthieu Rietzler, the director of the Rennes Opera thus set up a protocol for the two singers not to cross paths anywhere other than on the stage.

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Opera singer honours Breonna Taylor’s memory with poignant ‘Vigil’

The Louisville Orchestra has honoured Breonna Taylor with a performance of Davóne Tines’ heartrending, Vigil.

In its most recent virtual concert, the orchestra was joined by Tines himself – who as well as being a composer is a bass-baritone – for the performance of his poignant tribute to Taylor, who was murdered by police in her own home earlier this year. Tines’ piece is subtitled as ‘An Exercise in Sympathy’ and sees Tine as soloist. It implores us to ‘Pay attention to your breath’ and ‘try to feel the surface your hand is touching’.

‘Did you wake up this morning?’ the video for Vigil asks us (watch above). “Breonna Taylor was shot dead in the middle of the night in her own home. She was unarmed. She was innocent,” it hits us with. “Justice hasn’t been served. Do something about it,” Tines implores us – and leaves us with ways of checking in and taking action against racism.

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Salzburger Festspiele erhalten 262 Millionen Euro

Die Salzburger Festspiele sollen in den kommenden Jahren modernisiert werden und erhalten daher von Bund, Land und Stadt finanzielle Mittel in Höhe von 262,8 Millionen Euro. 40 Prozent der Kosten übernimmt dabei der Bund, je dreißig kommen von Land und Stadt.

Salzburg solle durch die Sanierung seiner Festspielspielstätten weiterhin neben Wien das kulturelle Zentrum Österreichs mit Weltgeltung bleiben, so Landeshauptmann Wilfried Haslauer (ÖVP). Das Große Festspielhaus ist nach 60 Jahren vor allem in Bereichen wie Brand- und Arbeitnehmerschutz sanierungsbedürftig, aber auch an der Heiztechnik, Klimaanlagen und Barrierefreiheit müsse gearbeitet werden.


Salzburg Festival receives 262 million euros

The Salzburg Festival is to be modernised in the coming years and will therefore receive financial support of 262.8 million euros from the federal government, the state and the city. The Federal Government will bear 40 percent of the costs, with thirty each coming from the state and the city.

According to Governor Wilfried Haslauer (ÖVP), Salzburg should continue to be the cultural centre of Austria with international standing alongside Vienna by renovating its festival venues. After 60 years, the Grosses Festspielhaus is in need of renovation, especially in areas such as fire protection and employee safety, but work is also needed on heating technology, air conditioning and barrier-free access.

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