If you don't get feedback from your performers and your audience, you're going to be working in a vacuum.
I'm obviously very keen on the theater and I think it's inevitable that some of the orchestral and chamber pieces have got dramatic elements which might even suggest an unspecified dramatic plot of some kind or other, even though it's not in my mind at the time.
The present government is very insistent that business sponsorship should replace government sponsorship of the arts. Business sponsorship won't happen unless you make tax concessions, which they won't.
An audience shouldn't listen with complacency.
You can't pander to your audience. You might in the short term, but ultimately you can't hoodwink them, either.
But you can't really know your audiences so well.
You don't underestimate either players or audience in any circumstances.
I know what I want at least, and the older I get I think I'm better at getting it out of players and singers.
I'm not actually teaching any more, but I am writing pieces for schools all the time, and for kids.
What they can expect always is that they're going to be made to think.
At the moment, in Britain we're facing such enormous cutbacks in education programs and music programs and art programs that you feel you are knocking your head against a brick wall.
But when you get a bit older, and I hate to use the word, quite a bit more established, people take more notice and conducting becomes a great deal easier. You don't have battles like you had before.
I don't see how they can with most of my pieces, but I think it's unfortunate that they can through familiarity with flashy performances of a great deal of other music.
I recently did a piece for the Boston Pops and John Williams, and I hope that it's as well a composed piece as I've ever done for any other medium or occasion.
I'm very interested, for instance, in music in education - getting young people not only to listen to, but participate in the music that I write. I consider this one of the most vital aspects of my work.
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