Classical will continue to have a small but enthusiastic niche market, just like prog rock, most jazz, Celtic music, etc. People will survive playing, recording and selling it. Few will get rich but many will be able to eat and so it will go. The real question is not "whither classical?" but, "whither symphonies??" They are the large organizations that are going to find it fiscally difficult to keep going in years to come. String quartets are going to be fine.
I recently posted what I heard on the radio, here in the UK.....that was that classical CDs only accounted for around 5% of the UK market......less than I imagined. It just makes you realise what an even smaller market the niche areas of classics serve.....you know the 'modern' discordant 'stuff'....A small percentage of a small percentage......(that's; let me see......5% of 5% is....Ummm........1/4 of 1%.....good job the planet's got a population plague!!)
If you want to make a decent living....do the maths and do something that appeals to the majority......sell your principles and your soul....you know you want to!
PS, Of course, you could just try and get a large percentage of the small 0.25 %......if that's what you want.
Please, define or re-define "classical". According to Bruce, it died with Brahms, so, Mahler,Prokofjev,Sostakovich,Bartok,Copland and a host of others are not 'classical".
Music of feelings expressed with harmony and beauty is being created as we speak, and I equate "classical" with music in harmony and good taste.
Last night on the Leno show (Sorry, I had to watch because of some visitors) there was a group of three men, grabbing their crotches, yelling some "lyrics", accompanied by a guy on drums.
The audience clapped, but I do not believe any one of them would pay a dollar for this kind of noise. It may be, that teenagers NOW, mostly because they can not say "this is crap" and be accepted by others, (They would not dare to yell: The emperor is NAKED!) clap and even buy this garbage, but by the time they grow up, the ones who have a musical ear, will turn to "classical", not neccesarely Mozart,Brahms but MUSIC. So, as a first time since I read Bruce's comments, I beg to differ. It aint dead, and will not be until the last human is expired. Classical is created NOW, and the word should not mean "old" it should mean: CLASS!
It often has to do with whether it is Classical (capital 'C') which is music between 1770–1830 which many would argue ended as far as it's greatest historical prevalence with Brahms. Then of course there is classical with a small 'c' more often referring to the general approach... well anyway... you get the drift. As for the reference... semantic levity I'm sure.