Idea Festival | Classical Music for the 97 Percent

Many people learn about classical music as kids, in piano lessons or choir, but drift away from it with time. Salon 97 is a San Francisco-based organization dedicated to making classical music accessible, inclusive and—most of all—fun to folks who might be ready to give it another try.

(The name comes from the rough percentage of Americans who don't self-identify as ardent classical music fans.) 

Founder Cariwyl Hebert says a casual atmosphere, good sound, and maybe a little wine can go a long way toward de-mystifying a classical performance. Through Salon 97, she runs listening parties and workshops, and produces a podcast.

After her workshop on American composers during IdeaFestival last week, Hebert sat down with me to talk Warner Bros. and “Star Wars” and share tips for novices who want to become classical music fans. 

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