What would classical music look like if we were always searching
for our next favorite composer?
What if we could easily access composers who we're less familiar with? Bach and Beethoven aren't going anywhere anytime soon, and so much of the musical landscape is still unexplored.
New Muses Project is a DEI-centered classical music organization, promoting justice and curiosity through performance, education, and scholarship. We are driven by a radical desire to always keep learning , as well as strong commitments to intersectionality and depth of understanding.
We are creating a vibrant future for classical music that truly celebrates all composers, and we invite you to join us in this adventure.
Classical music received a shock
to the system in 2020 amid the racial reckoning that swept the USA and the world. Suddenly, "diversity" in classical
music, which had long been an underground endeavor, seemed on the verge of becoming mainstream. And yet, by 2021,
we were observing that many musicians were still largely sticking to the status quo, without enough resources or
motivation to make relevant changes to their personal music practices.
When we heard a student casually remark, 'Elgar is so underrated!' we laughed at how a composer so prominent as Edward Elgar could be underrated. We said, 'You know who's actually underrated? Ethel Smyth.' And in that moment we knew we had come up with a groundbreaking way to find new composers to love: 'if you like Elgar, you'll love Smyth!' After that the ideas poured forth. We would build a platform to make composer recommendations, backed up by a network database of composers and their music, which would be totally comprehensive, well-researched, and equally useful to the performer, scholar, or newcomer. We would plug in all the gaps of missing recordings and transcriptions with our own high-quality publications for maximum accessibility. No composer would be left out. We would change the face of exclusive, inaccesible classical music forever.
To get there, we've been hard at work building this web resource and researching hundreds of composers, stepping out of our comfort zones to learn about business, law, and money. We're really proud of our progress, and we hope that you'll join us on this journey to make classical music justice-focused and curiosity-driven.
This is the flagship endeavor of New Muses Project, a central hub for exploring composers and their music. Our database is organized as an interconnected web of composers, creating links between them based on stylistic parameters. When you let us know a composer you like, we look in our database for a composer we think you’ll love.
Access to excellent recordings is essential for enjoying and learning a composer’s music. It is an cycle of injustice that some composers receive hundreds of performances every year, while others do not. We will rectify this problem through an annual series of professional-level albums of rarely or never-recorded music which deserve more attention.
For music to be widely performable, scores must be budget-friendly and engraved well. We understand the frustration of coming across a piece’s existence, only to find that no transcription exists or the work is no longer in print. Our transcription project will plug in these holes, removing this particular barrier to entry.
Gloria Yin (they/she)
Technical and Co-Artistic Director
Joe Lerangis (they/them)
Operations and Co-Artistic Director
Rhianna Cockrell (she/they)
Marketing & Musicology
Marketing & Musicology