"Authenticity in musical performance?" was the title of a three- clay conference sponsored by the Curtis Institute of Music, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on March 9-11 of this year. The conference opened Friday evening with a keynote address by Max Rudolf (Curtis), followed by William S. Newman (emeritus, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill) speaking on "Authenticity- some options and priorities."
A panel discussion on Saturday morning included Piero Weiss (Peabody Conservatory of Music) speaking on "Zeitgeist, Klangidealand other imponderables in the reconstruction of our performance," Sandra Rosenblum on "Potholes in the road to critical editions," and Edward Aldwell (Curtis) on "Tempo in the Art of Fugue" The afternoon panel began with Lionel Party on ornamentation, and continued with Marc Mostovoy's "Are performance standards being compromised in the name of authenticity?" Will Crutchfield closed the session with his ideas on "Research into vocal performance practice." The conference ended with a final roundtahle discussion with all participants on Sunday morning. The papers from the conference are scheduled to be published next year.
The "Early Music Debate: Ancients, Modems, Post-moderns" will be the focus of a symposium given on June 16. 1990 as part of the Berkeley Festival and Exhibition / Music in History, which is being produced by Cal Performances in cooperation with the Department of Music of the University of California at Berkeley. The festival runs from Sunday, June 10Sunday, June 17 and is supported in part by a major grant from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, with additional support from the National Endowment for the Arts, the L.J. Skaggs and Mary C. Skaggs Foundation, and Lufthansa German Airlines. It includes a marvelous array of performers (Ensemble Hesperion XX, Musica Antiqua Köln. Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, among many) and programs (Monteverdi's Mass and Vespers of the Blessed Virgin of 1610, Jommelli's La schiava Iiberata of 1768, Handel's La Resurrezione of 1708, among many). For a brochure or information, call (415) 642-2849.
The "Debate" will be chaired by Joseph Kerman ( University of California, Berkeley), and discussed by panelists John Rockwell (New York Times), Laurence Dreyfus (University of Chicago), Nicholas McGegan (Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra), Joshua Kosman (San Francisco Chronicle), Ellen Rosand (Rutgers University), Richard Taruskin (University of California, Berkeley), and Robert Winter (University of California, Los Angeles).
The starting point for the debate will be the following three questions, quoted verbatim here:
1 "Will some participants ('Ancients') reaffirm the traditional view that early music is a reasoned and appropriate approach to historical music making?"
2 "Will others ('Moderns') see early music as a typical product of our own century, responsive to the cult of objectivity and other tenets of modernism expounded by Ortega, Eliot, and Stravinsky? …