Missy Mazzoli writes an exuberant final report on the Composer Institute in Minneapolis:
In my laughably biased opinion, last night's concert at Minneapolis's Orchestra Hall was a huge success. Close to 800 people, two-thirds of whom were not regular subscription concert-goers, many of whom were under thirty, and at least five of whom sported colorful mohawks and multiple piercings, showed up to hear nine works they had never heard before, enthusiastically stomping and cheering throughout the night. As much as I want to believe that everyone secretly loves new music, that iPods are full of Andriessen, showers reverberate with the sound of Saariaho, and rampant indifference is just a cute way of keeping everyone's otherwise uncontrollable enthusiasm in check, I accept the fact that programming new music is a risk. It was a risk that paid off (in more ways than one) for the Minnesota Orchestra. Music directors from all over the country came to the concert with the idea of bringing this institute to their own orchestras, but the Minnesota Orchestra has the distinction of being the first to take this long-overdue risk with such successful results. Watching Osmo Vänskä conduct with such passion and precision you would have thought the world depended on every twist of his baton. For some of us, it does.
Meanwhile, Mark Swed and Out West describe the large, enthusiastic audience that showed up for Gerald Barry's Triumph of Beauty and Deceit at the Los Angeles Philharmonic. Thomas Adès, who conducted, and who's used to relatively big crowds back home in England, expressed delight at the turnout. Yes, new music brings in audiences when it is presented with conviction and flair.