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Sir Peter Maxwell Davies Warns Daily Telegraph that Music's Future is in Danger

By Classicalite Newsdesk on Nov 19, 2013 11:33 PM EST

Sir Peter Maxwell Davies, one of today's leading composers and the U.K.'s Master of the Queen's Music, has attacked music education in Britain. Speaking to the Daily Telegraph newspaper, he said that the situation has "reached a serious tipping point," where youngsters of the future will be almost entirely ignorant of the works of the great composers.

Comparing the music situation to that with great literature, "Max" (as he is affectionately known) said that young people are "more interested in vacuous celebrity culture and inane talent shows." He blamed a series of British governments on all sides of the political divide for not safeguarding music education. Local councils are wrong to charge money for music education, he told the newspaper, while the unjust painting of classical music as elitist could become a self-fulfilling prophecy if only the rich are informed about and able to afford to play an instrument.

His warning comes after a similar outburst from the violinist Nicola Benedetti. But then, musicians have been saying this for years, and do governments listen? The great worry is that their successors may forget how to.

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TagsPeter Maxwell Davies, Daily Telegraph, Nicola Benedetti

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