“…it is appropriate to stress the social abnormality of the concert ritual itself. What attracts audiences to concerts is that what performers attempt on the concert or opera stage is exactly what most members of the audience cannot emulate or aspire to. But this unattainable actuality, so strikingly dramatic when we see it before us on a stage, depends on the existence of unseen faculties and powers that make it possible: the performers’ training and gifts; cultural agencies like concert associations, managers, ticketsellers; the conjunction of various social and cultural processes (including the revolutions in capitalism and telecommunication, electronic media, jet travel) with an audience’s wish or appetite for a particular musical event. The result is what can be called an extreme occasion, something beyond the everyday, something irreducibly and temporally non repeatable, something whose core is precisely what can be experienced only under relatively severe and unyielding conditions.” Edward W. Said, Musical Elaborations. NY: Columbia University Press, 1991, pp. 18-19.

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