For Good Measure, by Ensemble for These Times (E4TT)
Episode 72: Da Capo Conversations with Jonathan Bailey Holland and Angélica Negrón
Looking for a way to listen to diverse creators and to support equity in the arts? Tune in weekly to For Good Measure!
Today we revisit Jonathan Bailey Holland’s and Angélica Negrón’s perspectives on identity, culture, and music making. If you enjoyed today’s conversation and want to know more about Jonathan Bailey Holland and Angélica Negrón, check them out here and here. Parts of this episode originally premiered on January 27, 2021, on Youtube, click here, and on November 15, 2021, on Youtube, click here.
This podcast is made possible in part by a grant from the California Arts Council and generous donors, like you. Want to support For Good Measure and E4TT? Make a tax-deductible donation or sign up for our newsletter, and subscribe to the podcast!
Intro music: “Trifolium” by Gabriela Ortiz, performed by E4TT (Ilana Blumberg, violin; Abigail Monroe, cello; Margaret Halbig, piano), as part of “Below the Surface: Music by Women Composers,” January 29, 2022
Outro music: “Lake Turkana” by Marcus Norris, performed by E4TT (Margaret Halbig, piano), as part of “Alchemy,” October 15, 2021
Transcription courtesy of Otter.ai.
Co-Producer, Host, and E4TT co-founder: Nanette McGuinness
Co-Producer and Audio Engineer: Stephanie M. Neumann
Podcast Cover Art: Brennan Stokes
With assistance from Adrienne Anaya, Hannah Chen, Sam Mason, Renata Volchinskaya
Nanette McGuinness 00:00
[INTRO MUSIC] Welcome to For Good Measure, an interview series celebrating diverse composers and other creative artists sponsored by a grant from the California Arts Council. I'm Nanette McGuinness, Artistic Executive Director of Ensemble for These Times. In this week's episode, we continue our Da Capo Conversations, a mini series where we'll be giving familiar segments a topical twist. [INTRO MUSIC ENDS] Today we revisit Jonathan Bailey Holland's and Angélica Negrón's perspectives on identity culture and making music. Here's what Jonathan Bailey Holland had to say:
Jonathan Bailey Holland 00:41
In terms of the duality being an African American and being a classical composer, I would say that being African American defines everything about my life. And the same could be said about people from other races or ethnicities. But, in America, being African American means various things in various contexts. I think in the context of classical music, that means that the descriptor is often seen as necessary when talking about me or my music in a way that similar descriptors are not seen as necessary for other composers who are not African American, and therefore means that I spend more time thinking about the fact that that descriptor is often associated with me as a composer, then other composers may spend thinking about being more than just a composer.
Nanette McGuinness 01:51
Here's what Angélica Negrón had to say:
Angélica Negrón 01:54
I think I'm looking forward to...to the conversation moving forward in a way that is more connected to sustainability, and support, and community. And especially now thinking about a lot of artists of color, getting more commissions and more performances and more works because since last year is racial uprising, there's been an obvious shift in the programming, especially in major organizations, like orchestras, and realizing that we exist, and we're here and and we have things to say. So I think I'm...I'm interested in when that happens in a way that is not a natural progression. Or it's not something that has been at a pace that feels normal, it just feels like all of a sudden for some organizations, I'm interested in the conversations that we need to have about how can we make that sustainable and how we can best support artists to make the art they want to make, not commission them to write about their trauma, not commission them to write something about being an artist of color, having this openness that we have for other artists be the same for us. And I also want to talk more with colleagues about how do we make sure that once we're invited in places that have historically been excluding us, how we can make sure that we're treated with respect and...and that we can also find ways to invite other folks that haven't been invited in those spaces.
Nanette McGuinness 04:15
[OUTRO MUSIC] Thank you for listening to For Good Measure's Da Capo Conversations, and a special thank you to our guests for joining us today. If you enjoyed this episode, please subscribe to our podcast by clicking on the subscribe button, and support us by sharing it with your friends, posting about it on social media and leaving us a rating and a review. To learn more about E4TT, our concert season online and in the Bay Area, or to make a tax deductible donation please visit us at www.e4tt.org. This podcast is made possible, in part, by a grant from the California Arts Council and generous donors like you. For Good Measure is produced by Nanette McGuinness and Ensemble for These Times and designed by Brennan Stokes, with special thanks to co-producer and audio engineer Stephanie M. Neumann. Remember to keep supporting equity in the arts and tune in next week, "for good measure." [OUTRO MUSIC ENDS]