"Making art for art’s sake, free of monetary concerns or deadlines, is a fantasy for many professional artists. But listening to snippets of Brahms and Schubert waft through sun-dappled trees one afternoon, a critic had the sense that at Marlboro such utopian fantasies remain a vibrant reality. "
By VIVIEN SCHWEITZER
Where Musicians Bask in the Luxury of Time
New York Times, Published: August 8, 2011
It's a "vibrant reality" because most of these people are not people who have to work for a living. They don't have to stress out about rent on a monthly basis. Of COURSE there are Cinderella stories here and there. But I'm talking the culture as a whole, it's an upper class thang.
So why should we be impressed that they take off an entire summer from money making when they were never subjected to those pressures in the first place? I'm mostly talking about the younger generation, here.
I honestly don't think this is an appropriate way to position the relevance of Marlboro. Yes, we all know it's the golden land for chamber music, a mega resume builder, (career guarantor, almost), and in a beautiful part of the country, with really nice people. If I ever got accepted, I would drop everything and go in a heartbeat, even if I had to pay my rent off credit cards.
But to say that they have unlimited time is somehow missing the bigger picture. When these folks return to NYC et al, and start hammering away on concerts that are put together in a couple rehearsals, what's the reason for the difference? Are most of these folks *really* funding the standard of living in which they partake? Are they really covering their expenses with their work? Are they being forced to work in a way that compromises their ideal artistic activity due to financial reasons? Really?
What I'm trying to say is that, most of the upper eschelon classical musicians in NYC live a middle class existence, and of the younger ones that are headed (or have 'arrived') in that circle are NOT PAYING THEIR OWN rent with their work. So whether they do this in a highly-visible way at Marlboro, or dispersed amongst east cost urban enclaves, what's the difference?