The current issue of nmz features an interview with Detlef Bensmann, chairman of Deutscher Tonkünstlerverband Berlin, who maintains that his aim is to unify and pacify the professional body. So how is it that he refuses to communicate with critical members and ignores diverging opinions? In the last general assembly I got most of the votes for the position of the second deputy chairman—yet the person supervising the election failed to initiate a second ballot. However, Bensmann since denies any collaboration, plans to avoid the election to be completed, and prevents me from introducing my ideas to the executive board. Instead, he threatens to expel me from the organisation. This is how efficient association work and representation of Berlin’s freelance musicians is ruled out.
This is to commemorate Linda Shaver-Gleason who passed away last week, aged 36. A public musicologist, as she used to refer to herself, Linda appeared as a scholar of Mendelssohn’s reception history, as a highly valued author writing for diverse outlets, and not least as an influential blogger who reached out via her own website Not Another Music History Cliché. Her eloquence, commitment, and courage will be missed. May she rest in peace and her legacy continue.
I find it deplorable that executives of the largest professional body of musicians in Germany, Deutscher Tonkünstlerverband, present themselves with misleading or plainly wrong information regarding their actual occupation. Here are three examples:
(1) Saxophonist Detlef Bensmann, current chairman of DTKV Berlin, claims to be a professor on his Instagram account. In fact, he holds no such position at any public institution.
(2) Flutist Adelheid Krause-Pichler, current vice president of DTKV Germany, refers to herself as a composer on her website. In fact, she does not appear in public with her own compositions, provided there are any.
(3) Composer Gabriel Iranyi, former board member of DTKV Berlin, claims to be a musicologist in several places. In fact, he has never published or lectured substantially in this discipline.
It’s not that I attach particular importance to jubilees and anniversaries, and the upcoming BTHVN 2020 celebrations will leave me largely indifferent. However, I suppose I am unlikely to let this day pass unnoticed: Nikolai Karlovich Medtner was born 140 years ago. Happy birthday, mate, your music is an infinite source of inspiration to me, and will continue to give me moments of passion, joy, and utter beatitude. It is my sincere hope that you would have condoned the following arrangement which I prepared in 2018, and am now re-posting here as a posthumous present—I borrowed the catchiest tunes from your C major Sonata, Op. 11 No. 3, added an English translation of the Goethe lyrics which you chose as a motto for that work, and compiled these ingredients into a little jazz ballad named Atonement. I’ll be more than content if this trifle serves no other purpose than provide a humble delight for the fellow admirers of your art.