Is This Any Way to Celebrate?

The brochure for next season’s Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia concerts arrived the other day, with “50th Anniversary” proudly emblazoned on the cover. 50 years, that’s something to mark with special events, such as commissions and premieres, no? No, indeed. There is one piece by a living composer scheduled for next season, and that is by Music Director, Dirk Brossé.

At a moment when new music is – as it naturally should be – the engine behind today’s most interesting programming by orchestras and chamber orchestras throughout the country, this seems to be a real failure of imagination.