If you attended a major symphony performance anywhere in the U.S. last year, chances are you did not see any works by women composers.
In fact, if you’re like most Americans, it’s quite conceivable that you have never seen a live performance of a symphonic work by a woman composer.
According to a survey of the 22 largest American orchestras, women composers accounted for only 1.8 percent of the total pieces performed in the 2014-2015 concert season. And of the performances of works by living composers, women accounted for just 14.3 percent.
To say that women are underrepresented in the classical music canon would be an understatement. Women are clearly not being heard—the question is, why is nobody listening?
Learn about this and many more issues of feminism in classical music at Dr. Amber Archibald-Sešek’s FREE Viola and Vixens recital tonight, which features the WORLD PREMIERE of Seattle-based composer and clarinetist Angelique Poteat’s new piece, “Water Pastels.” Also included on the program are three other leading contemporary female composers: Rebecca Clarke, Libby Larsen, and Amanda Harberg.
I am also very proud to announce that yours truly will be presenting the pre-concert lecture on the past, present, and future of feminism in classical music.
My lecture will traverse the following topics:
1. Who are some of the key women composers in music history?
2. Why are these women are not included in the Western classical music canon?
3. How does this relate to larger issues in feminism?
4. How can we begin fixing the issue of women being underrepresented?
5. What might the future of classical music might look like?
I won’t give too much away, but I will say it’s an event you definitely do not want to miss!
Viola and Vixens is on Thursday, March 31 at Seattle University’s Pigott Auditorium on Capitol Hill. This concert is FREE, though donations will be accepted to help fund the Seattle U viola studio’s upcoming trip the American Viola Society conference in Oberlin, Ohio. The pre-concert lecture starts at 6:30 p.m., and the concert starts at 7:30 p.m. For more information, please visit this link.