Haitian-American violinist Daniel Bernard Roumain (DBR), known as a leading innovator in today’s art world as a composer, performer, and educator, is scheduled to perform at the University of Noth Carolina at Wilmington on October 21st at 7pm. From his exciting live performances to his collaborations with such diverse names as Philip Glass and Lady Gaga, DBR remains on the cutting edge of an exciting and barrier-demolishing career.
Here are some excerpts from a recent interview in anticipation of his appearance at UNCW. You can access the complete interview through the link below.
encore: You’re known as a passionate proponent of music education. What effect did your Floridian upbringing and public education have on the path you took in life?
DBR: South Florida is a very diverse community. That diversity is reflected in the musical culture of its people. I remember hearing an array of different music simply walking down the street. As the streets changed, so, too, did the music. I am a proud product of the K-12 public school system of Broward County, Florida, and the music and people there were, and are, representative of the complex relationships we have with an increasingly complex world of ideas.
e: What can other people in the creative community (besides administrators and teachers) do to help create and nurture more success stories like your own?
DBR: Artists cannot change your life. They can influence your life, but they won’t tell you where to go to school, which direction to drive on your street, when you can water your lawn, the value of your home, or the price of your property taxes. Local politicians have, perhaps, the greatest influence on our local lives. Any concerned parent should seek them out, call them out, and be at those meetings making sure their voices are heard. They speak not only for themselves, but the the very lives of their children. Any parent from southern Iran, of the south-side of Chicago, knows this.
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e: There’s an obvious age disparity at classical or “serious” concerts in the audiences; i.e., an overwhelming majority of patrons seem to be older while the younger demographic seems to be very underrepresented. What can people who care about such things do to change this and get more younger patrons to attend and enjoy symphonic concerts?
DBR: Create music—and a concert experience—for the rest of us! Don’t play in the conventional concert halls; play in local clubs and coffee shops. Don’t dress-up; wear the clothes your music needs. Don’t keep the lights too bright; consider how great lighting can affect the sound. Don’t make the ticket price too expensive; keep things cheap and affordable. Don’t always play at 8pm; the later the show, the younger the crowd. Don’t do the standard repertoire; new music brings curiosity and the curious. Don’t work with classical musicians; compose music for DJ’s, laptopists, and iPodists. Don’t only work with musicians; dancers and actors bring their entire bodies to their work—and their friends. Don’t let them sit; create an experience that the audience has to stand, dance, or leave. Most importantly, don’t wait.
For the complete interview go to http://www.encorepub.com/articles.php?i=read&article_id=808§ion_id=3