Performing in homes

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There’s an industry name for performances given in personal homes nowadays that escapes me, but it appears to be a growing circuit for performers to present their work. Thanks to market forces, there are very few intimate public performance venues for London musicians, compared to the way things used to be.

I attended a fundraising show in someone’s home a few months ago. The location was edgy, but people in attendance were very well heeled. No one should be judged for associating with folks who make them feel comfortable. It is probably the most sensible thing to do.

The content of the performances was rooted in the music traditions of people who would not have fitted in. Arguments about cultural misappropriation are not always productive, because all of us should feel free to draw inspiration from any source.

When cultural expression is taken for granted by those who are directly linked to where it came from, the artists still need to find ways to survive and thrive as creators. Obviously, there are other issues to be considered, such as the history of exploitation between cultures, but we all have to make the most of the present moment.

A cultural leader once commented on the fact that some folks don’t know how to look after their artists. Everyone has lessons to learn. It is never too late to turn a new leaf.