December, 1989

Elliott S. Schwartz

As I write these words, in early November, memories of the recent CMS national meeting—which took place only a few weeks ago—are still fresh in my mind. Almost 500 persons attended the St. Louis events, and I wouldn't be surprised if every one of them came away delighted, stimulated, and creatively re-charged. The various sessions provided an opportunity to hear some remarkable performances and discussions of very special music, much of it indigenous to the area. In addition, this year's collaboration with the Center for Black Music Research offered another focus to the conference, one which was especially welcome. A number of subjects were presented in rather novel formats. For example, I was asked to chair a fascinating session—celebrating the one-hundredth anniversary of the 1889 Paris Exposition—which included a musicological paper presentation, a live gamelan performance (featuring a selection which had been heard by Debussy in 1889?), and responses by a panel of composers who have been strongly influenced by non Western models: many diverse approaches illuminating a single topic. In short, the 1989 national conference was a great success; Bravo to Program Chair Patricia Shehan Campbell for a virtuoso performance!

The CMS Board also met in St. Louis, and I'm happy to state that a number of exciting projects emerged from our meetings. To begin with, we are pleased to announce that College Music Symposium will resume its former schedule of two issues per year. In addition, details for two 1990 Summer Institutes are finalized. Each will focus upon a topic of great interest, and each features an outstanding faculty. We have also begun making specific plans for the 1990 Annual Meeting, to be held in Washington, D.C. Program Chair Lloyd Ultan is devising formats to tap the unique resources—artistic, historical, and political—of the capitol area, from the Smithsonian to the Library of Congress, to the NEH and NEA, and perhaps a few key members of congress. Future annual meetings were on our agenda as well. On the long-range planning front, the CMS Board is exploring a possible meeting "track" for the 1990s which would take us into the Southeast (Atlanta, Charleston, Memphis, and the like), and we are also looking into a possible 1995 meeting in Hawaii.

Finally, at the St. Louis meeting I was privileged to host a reception for Past Presidents of The College Music Society. I was really delighted to see so many of them there: Robert Trotter, William Reynolds, Barbara English Maris, Arthur Tollefsen, and David Willoughby—a wealth of insight, experience, dedication, and creative energy in one room. The vitality of the Society and its continuing achievements owe so much to those individuals. I'm looking forward to seeing them again—and all the rest of you as well—in Washington next October.