Bach Dancing & Dynamite Society’s Commitment to Diversity and Inclusion
Classical music was born in a culture and a time that practiced many forms of racism and exclusion, many of which continue today. Rooting out these problems requires long, hard work from all of us. In order to remain a relevant part of contemporary society, classical music must commit to improving in the areas of diversity, inclusion, and equity. Classical music performers need to play a part in healing these rifts that leave our society as a whole weakened and vulnerable.
In our work as performers, curators, and organizers of classical music performances, we choose to make positive contributions to diversity and inclusion by performing music by women and composers of color. We seek out and perform classical music by composers of diverse genders, gender identities, races, ethnicities, and cultural backgrounds. Recent and upcoming performances include major works of Fanny Mendelssohn, Ethyl Smyth, Lili Boulanger, Rebecca Clarke, Florence Price, Margaret Bonds, Gabriela Lena Frank, Chen Yi, Undine Smith Moore, William Grant Still, Scott Joplin, Robert Owens, Shawn Okpebholo, Bright Sheng, Carlos Guastavino, Jessie Montgomery and John Wineglass.
We value the contributions of composers and performers of diverse genders, gender identities, ethnicities, and cultures not just because it’s the right thing to do, but also because it is the artistically interesting thing to do. This is true not just of our present moment; it has been true for all time, though it has seldom been acknowledged. Art benefits from the cross-pollination of diverse cultures and perspectives. Let us work together to facilitate that cross-pollination in classical music today.
BDDS’s primary performance home is Collins Recital Hall on the UW-Madison Campus. In the spirit of humility and respect, we wish to acknowledge that “the University of Wisconsin-Madison occupies ancestral Ho-Chunk land, a place their nation has called Teejop (day-JOPE) since time immemorial.
In an 1832 treaty, the Ho-Chunk were forced to cede this territory.
Decades of ethnic cleansing followed when both the federal and state government repeatedly, but unsuccessfully, sought to forcibly remove the Ho-Chunk from Wisconsin.
This history of colonization informs our shared future of collaboration and innovation.
Today, UW-Madison respects the inherent sovereignty of the Ho-Chunk Nation, along with the eleven other First Nations of Wisconsin.”