Richard Kessler gives his high points on Tuesday at the San Francisco conference:
Mason Bates represents change in a vitally important way. He is, in so many respects, representative of the modern American composer. He’s hip, smart, also a DJ, draws upon a palatte that is not limited, by a long shot, by what most consider to be “classical” music, and here’s the best part, he’s one of two composers in residence with the orchestra that I consider to be among the most tradition bound. It’s the orchestra considered by many to be the standard bearer of quality and tradition. Not known for relationships with the American experimentalists nor great shape shifters of the 20th and 21st centuries, in my mind, the appointment of Mason Bates should be enough for people to rethink their long held opinions of what canonical organizations are and aren’t. Oh, and yes, by the way, he can compose.