Philadelphia lays off a music critic

Word is out that the Philadelphia Enquirer has halved its music staff.

David Patrick Stearns is leaving after 17 years. He has taken a buyout.

He writes: ‘I’ve seen this day coming for years – that’s one reason why I moved back to my old, 1990s home in Brooklyn two years ago and have been commuting to Philadelphia ever since. Losing a job of 17 years is tough, and on when it happened I wanted to be among my home community.’

Peter Dobrin remains.

 

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  • ” …moved back to my old, 1990s home in Brooklyn two years ago and have been commuting to Philadelphia ever since. Losing a job of 17 years is tough, and on when it happened I wanted to be among my home community.”

    Do critics need any commitment to the communities on their beat or can they, like music directors, come and go when needed?

    • Hogwash. Critics need to act and write like true critics, independent of the communities, papers/media that employ them, and the communities’ artistic institutions. This is to ensure they don’t fawn incessantly and tirelessly like fanboys/girls. In other words, not everyone, not everything, not every performance is wonderful night after night after night. We have too many undiscerning cheerleaders, for example, at the NY Times, the Philly Enquirer, etc etc etc.

    • Dude. David lived there for 15 years.

      Like he said, he moved back when it seemed clear that his job wasn’t likely to last – and, quite sensibly, he made the move while he still had a steady income.

  • A pity. A fine writer about music whose reviews I have enjoyed (and which certainly don’t fall into the “fanboy” category identified by Ungheuer…….). Best of luck for the future Mr Stearns.

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