New opportunities for young classical music artists

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New opportunities for young classical music artists

Even though classical music has experienced some decline in recent years, especially in terms of audience attendance in concert halls for young musicians and others, new cultural opportunities have emerged.

First and foremost, we observe the introduction and adaptation of classical music to numerous mainstream music genres, where elements are increasingly used to attract both discerning and conservative audiences to concerts held at major festivals. This often involves a mix of commercial music with elements of classical or even folk music.

Modern society has learned to exploit niches, and the incorporation of symphonic elements, the rearrangement, and adaptation of classical pieces to meet the demands of the current music industry is most likely a winning strategy.

To justify these claims, let’s take a look at some best practice examples, specifically artists with the highest level of education in classical music who have achieved greater success with the release of adaptations that incorporate elements of classical music. The most eloquent example is David Garrett (David Christian Bongartz), a German violinist and graduate of the Juilliard School. He is known in mainstream music for adapting fragments of classical works to modern genres and for creating original pieces that incorporate classical music elements with modern instruments such as distorted guitars, bass guitars, drum kits, and even synthesizers.

Although Garrett is an extraordinary classical music performer and could easily be a soloist for major philharmonic orchestras worldwide, his success is precisely due to the adaptation of classical music to the modern demands of society. If we analyze the numbers, we easily see that he is appreciated and known by a diverse and numerous audience. For instance, his song “Viva la Vida” has 124 million views on YouTube, and his channel on the same platform has 1.25 million subscribers. In terms of album sales, he has sold a total of 2,672,848 albums, with his best-selling album being “Rock Symphonies,” released in 2010, with over 600,000 units sold.

His sales success and his ability to interpret any piece at a high level led him to play the lead role in the movie “Paganini: The Devil’s Violinist,” where he portrays the famous violinist and composer Niccolò Paganini, performing the composer’s most famous works, such as Caprice No. 24 or La Campanella.

However, Garrett is just one example of an artist who managed to become famous by presenting classical music in a different light than the conservative one confined to concert halls. Other artists who have achieved similar success include Lindsey Stirling, Edvin Marton, or the duo 2CELLOS.

They have successfully blended classical music harmoniously with popular modern music genres, opening new horizons for both the public and future classical music performers. These artists have demonstrated that classical music can be “cool” and can be part of current music trends worldwide, regardless of the social status or education of the listeners. Their success is proven by the fame they have gained over time, without giving up their ideal of playing pieces from the classical repertoire, without drastically changing their technique, and without performing pieces of reduced difficulty that lack expression and do not offer satisfaction to the artist on stage.

In these circumstances, we can confidently affirm that there are always opportunities for classical music artists, even in today’s society. These opportunities just need to be found and exploited without compromising the qualities acquired after years of studying classical music.

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