This Special Collection investigates contemporary artistic and media representation of classical music as well as representation in the classical music industry and considers how these various forms of representation intersect. Questions concerning representation are currently at the forefront of public and scholarly debate about classical music. What, and whom, does classical music represent in the twenty-first century? How is it represented in the arts and media? How does representation operate in the classical music industry? Classical music has been criticised for being elitist, patriarchal, chauvinistic, and predominantly white. These criticisms may not be uniformly fair or accurate, especially in a global context. Efforts are continually being made to cultivate new audiences, diversify programming and ensembles, and experiment with new performance formats and technologies, yet it is clear there is still work to be done to achieve equal opportunities and inclusion. Representations in the arts and media help to shape ideas about classical music among its devotees and, more broadly, in the popular imagination, although these representations may not be accurate. Even so, how do representations and ‘reality’ influence one another? To what extent are artistic and media representations of classical music helping or hindering efforts to change industry practices? This special collection examines the representation of classical music in the twenty-first century from multiple perspectives and considers how these forms of representation intersect. This special collection is guest edited by Dr. Adrian Curtin (University of Exeter) and Dr. Adam Whittaker (Royal Birmingham Conservatoire).

Representing Classical Music in the Twenty-First Century

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Special Collections