22 February 2009

Sunday 22 February 2009 Chat

As Festivals Director I've become somewhat concerned by comments made in response to the ValeFest music project's first pilot festival, Winterval, which as regular readers will know, took place in and around the Vale of Belvoir at the end of January.
It feels like the committee is expected to deliver perfect events from the outset, without being given space or time to test ideas and, more specifically, to be allowed to make mistakes.
Events, like almost anything else, have to develop over time, as
Scott Berkun suggests in his book, 'The Myths of Innovation',
"The dirty little secret - the fact often denied - is that unlike the mythical epiphany, real creation is sloppy. Discovery is messy; exploration is dangerous. No one knows what he’s going to get when he is being creative.
"Creative work cannot fit neatly into plans, budgets, and schedules. Magellan, Lewis and Clark, and Captain Kirk were all sent on missions into the unknown with clear understanding that they might not return with anything, or even return at all."

Messy and dangerous in its way, ValeFest has already proved it's capable of delivering the goods. It's a good beginning.

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A number of radio listeners have been in touch asking what was meant by my reference to Quincy Jones'
'living Grammy record' in last week's blog.
The answer is reasonably simple;
Hungarian-born orchestral and operatic conductor Sir George Solti was awarded the most Grammies ever, winner of 31 awards and mentioned on a further 7: 6 won by an engineer and 1 by a soloist.
Sir George died in 1997.
Quincy Jones has so far won 27 Grammy awards. He has a prodigious musical output and shows no sign of slowing down. He could well win further awards in coming years.
Including her wins of a week ago, Alison Krauss has so far been presented with 26 Grammies. She too has a vast output and is, of course, far younger than Jones.
Whether Alison Krauss can overtake Quincy Jones and if either will succeed in beating Sir George's all-time Grammy award-winning record, time alone will tell.

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