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What is Open Classical?
Innovation, community, and opportunity.

We fill the opportunity gaps present in the classical music structure for professionals, amateurs and audiences alike.

While the non-profit, governmental and educational support structures available to the classical music community provide many opportunities, the complete reliance on top down solutions means that many ways of developing natural connections with potential audiences are missing or scarce. 

In the pop music realm, career advancement is gained through the development of a fanbase, the result of directly connecting with the public at large. But in the classical music realm, career advancement is only available through competitions and auditions for gatekeepers, which keeps innovation to a minimum in the industry. Critical structures as simple as community open mics and the ability to do regional touring to build a fanbase don’t exist in the realm of classical music.

We see these missing structures as the root cause of most of the problems facing the classical industry today. We believe finding ways to emulate these missing structural opportunities can help increase the connection of the performers with the public, and give more power and influence to that connection. The is a classical music industry that is more responsive to audiences and an energized audience base that feels more directly involved and less like simple observers.

Some of Open Classical’s most important conceptual innovations and programs are:

1 Classical Open Mic - a free community event where professionals and amateurs share music in a comfortable social atmosphere.

2 Artist Series touring route - a network of regional touring routes where classical musicians can tour a single program through multiple cities on consecutive days, lowering touring costs and increasing performance opportunities by significantly changing the economic model.

3 The New Canon Project - a developing web project described as “the Rotten Tomatoes for classical music composition”. An eventual global repository for opinions on classical music compositions that challenges new compositions to compete in quality with famous music of the past. The complex process of having audience members judge classical music compositions is distilled to one simple revolutionary question - “Do you want to hear that again?”

4 Classical music comedy original shows - “Night of the Living Dead Composers”, “The True (Not Exactly True) Story of Thanksgiving”, and the Children’s Operetta “Goldilocks” are original concept stage shows that mix high art with slapstick comedy.  

Our People

Mark Landson, Founder and Director

With a lifetime commitment to classical music combined with an entrepreneurial drive, Mark has brought a dream to life with Open Classical. His vision is to provide an opportunity for musicians to hone their skills while simultaneously creating a new experience for fans and performers. His creativity, leadership and love for story-telling is central to the spirit of the organization.

Brent Buemi, Dallas Classical Open Mic Host

Brent is a wonderful clarinetist and the welcoming host of Dallas Classical Open Mic. His sense of humor and willingness to wear any costume comes into play in many Open Classical productions!

And many valued volunteers sharing their time and talents...

Nikola Olic

Monty Daniels

Serkan Zanagar

Board of Directors

Nikola Olic*, President
Linda Huffaker, Treasurer
Kelly Ball, Secretary
Earl Browning*
Brina Palencia*
Kristen Treger
Harvey Siegler, Past President
Ronnie Craver
Sheri Manning

* Executive Committee


We greatly appreciate the people, venues and organizations that support us!

Emily Javadi Foundation
BuzzBrews Kitchen
Metroplex Piano Warehouse
Serkan Zanagar, Photographer
Charlie Biel, Photographer
Leila Bakery
WRR Classical 101 FM

Plus the cast of characters that perform and applaud at Classical Open Mic and other events!

View our info on the IRS website.
Latest IRS 990 filings: 2020, 2019, 2018

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