The Washington Post asked five of its art-form critics to write a few paragraphs explaining how they go about their jobs.
In her final paragraph, the classical music critic Anne Midgette offers as good a summary as I have read anywhere of what a critic’s priorities need to be in this year of our confusions and decline, 2108.
… debate, finally, is the point of the exercise. Don’t try to find a “right” answer, as if the performance you heard were a code that you’re trying to crack. Think of the experience as a conversation: The evening offers a point of view, and you respond to it. Is it a conversation that you want to continue, by going back and hearing that music again? Is it one you’re glad to have behind you? Is it something you want to talk about to other people — and can another person change your mind? All of this is part of the experience we have with any art form. And it’s a lot more fun to become an active participant than it is to receive the music in reverential, passive silence.
— Anne Midgette
Read the full article here.