A little about myself...
The hills of New Hampshire are my native habitat. From age 13, I was a professional organist in my home town of Bristol In the Newfound Area. I walked between home and church for daily organ practice with my eyes lifted to the hills. My senior year, I wrote a poem about the autumn hills: "Like one great piece of tapestry Stretched out across the sky...." The rest of it could stand editing. I did include it at the end of my 2013 book, "Unlaundered Cache and other poems."
College took me to the green mountains of Vermont where the inscription above the chapel pillars read, "The Strength of the Hills is His Also." Through the open third floor's wraparound windows in the now replaced Music Building at Middlebury College, I could gaze out at the broad expanse of the Adirondacks in New York State. This I enjoyed while doing required listening for each year's elective music appreciation class. By junior year, I had switched my major to Political Science. Thus I feel qualified to call myself an Arts Advocate. I was a member of such a group in North Carolina.
While I wrote "Des Beaux Arts in New Hampshire" weekly for the Manchester Union Leader, 1971-72, and Spotlight on the Arts for The Suburbanite in Winston-Salem, NC beginning in fall 1972, my first substantial music reviews were for The Chapel Hill Newspaper in the Eighties. My first review for the online music journal, Classical Voice of North Carolina, was the first anniversary 9/11 memorial concert at The Village Chapel n Pinehurst on September 11, 2002. Frederick Swann, organist, was the performing artist. My Author Page beginning with this is at www.cvnc.org (go to "About Us" tab, "writers & critics", "Mary Elizabeth Nordstrom", "Author's page").
Why I do this...
Having had the frustration of scarce reviews with which to market my performing artists on my own North South Arts roster, 1974-1983, I found myself helping to fill the void. I first tried a second entrepreneurial project, self-publishing "Outdoor Drama" (Books in Print 1985), but turned to writing music reviews. Presenters do not feel confident booking musicians who are not already famous unless they read how they are playing each successive year. I immediately saw the value of Classical Voice of North Carolina when it was only a startup. When we retired to Maine, I remembered that my seventh grade teacher, Natalie Blake (Sargent) had admonished the class members who would go to college and move away to one day bring back something of value that we had learned. Hence my obsession with the startup of Classical Voice of New England, Inc. in an attempt to establish this valuable resource for an area roughly the same size as North Carolina in territory to be covered.
My point of view...
Classical music experiences a resurgence from time to time, but in my opinion needs to be kept on the front burner more deliberately. Studies have shown that brain waves are enabled to be receptive to learning or relaxing or even healing when exposed to classical music. While Classical Voice of New England that posts the online music journal, Performing Arts of New England, regroups, and it may take years, I hope to be able to service area musicians with current reviews on this Blog.
From the vantage point of a parent watching the younger generation trying to get a foothold "in the business" to actual experience representing fine performing artists against great odds, I realize the urgent ongoing need for quotable comments and forge ahead to help make it happen in New England.
Credit for my logo goes to Steve Bradford. He created it from my suggestion, as a donation to the annual Speaker Series program at Union Church in which I had bought an advertisement. I have been using it ever since with gratitude for his permission.