Arpangel wrote:I think that the workshop, up until Midi etc, was a truly unique place, doing things that no other studio or individual could do, inhabited by some truly talented and genius people
I'm not sure it was unique exactly -- there were other studios around the world creating comparable experimental electronic music and music concrete. But it certainly was blessed with some extremely talented and creative people who combined skillfull musicianship and inventive technical nouse to deliver a large amount of bespoke material with a steady flow of commissions for music and effects for BBC Radio and TV programmes.
...when Midi and digital came along it was competing with a lot of other people that muscled in on the action, but with nowhere near the talent and imagination of the workshop.
Again, not entirely fair -- not everything that came out of RW was brilliant... Some of it was entirely average or uninspiring! And there were (and are) some very talented and capable independent composers who gained access to BBC commissions for the first time only after the RW closed.
But I think the changing technology and its greater accessibility lead inevitably to a change in the style and individuality of much of the music.