In a way, no, in many ways, I feel it is a very good thing that more people learn more about music and the arts, and one may hope that even the clichés can function as protection against attacks on art.
But old music and art, and old artists and musicians, composers, both have a tendency to become guilded, put in a frame which does not quite fit any life or any art, and many times it especially does not fit an artist’s life to be seen as perfect.
Today being gay is more and more seen as a variant which does not provoke anyone, but in Tchaikowsky’s time this was definitely not the case.
Brahms never married, and according to a biography I read, he went to prostitutes all his life. As I recall this text, he must have treated them well, because they sometimes asked him for money when they met him on the street.
In every life there are beautiful things and rotten or stupid ones, and I don’t want to judge, but to say that life is dark and light.
How this affects art and music remains to be found out in each case, also by performers or creators of exhibitions, but this kind of perspective on the artists’ lives adds to the perspective of what they made, in one way or another. Making art is, I think, for an artist, regularly or often what saves them from going completely down, and depending on what would have dragged them down, of course it may or must come out in their work, somehow, and should be incorporated into interpretations or comments, whenever it is relevant.
Of course, in the case of Zappa and other artists and musicians of his time, the art speaks for itself, and I am very happy that he and others had the courage to do what they did. That doesn’t mean everybody has to do the same or that this is the most important thing at any time or in any place, but sometimes the need for freedom is there, and something has to happen.
Everyone alive has the right to privacy…I could add, to a certain extent. In the age of Facebook, all kinds of real and not very real information spread very fast, and there is also a need to behave, which of course sometimes goes against the need to challenge power, status, etc., but more in politics than in arts, I would say.
The need to calm down public opinion from time to time also seems important.