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boston symphony orchestra

Gail Samuel, Joe Donahue, and Alan Chartock
WAMC / WAMC

On June 21st, Gail Samuel officially became the first female President and Chief Executive Officer of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, the eighth in the organization’s 140-year history.

Having helped establish the Los Angeles Philharmonic as one of the world’s most successful and publicly engaged symphony orchestras, Samuel now looks to carry on the BSO’s mission of connecting classical music with community.

She now leads the Symphony Orchestra, the Boston Pops, and Tanglewood, and will oversee a number of initiatives that will expand the reach and relevance of orchestral music in the Boston area, the Berkshires, and beyond. 

Tony Fogg
Sarah LaDuke / WAMC

Anthony Fogg is the William I. Bernell Artistic Administrator of The Boston Symphony Orchestra and Director of Tanglewood. He joins us this morning to talk about getting back to work. 

Please note: this interview ends abruptly due to technical difficulties experienced during the broadcast.

Tanglewood Center Music Fellows David Riccobono and Morgan Davison
Sarah LaDuke / WAMC

The Tanglewood Music Center Fellowship Program is the Boston Symphony Orchestra's summer academy for advanced musical study. The TMC offers an intensive schedule of study and performance for emerging professional instrumentalists, singers, conductors, and composers who have completed most of their formal study.

We are pleased to welcome two TMC Fellows, who are both returning this year: bassoonist Morgan Davison, and David Riccobono, Percussion.

Ellen Highstein - white woman wearing eyeglasses and a yellow rain jacket stands, background is leaves
Sarah LaDuke / WAMC

At the Tanglewood Music Center, fellows hone their musical craft and learn from the masters. For decades, talented young musicians from around the country and around the globe have been coming to the Berkshires to study with some of the best musicians in the world. 

Ellen Highstein Director of the Tanglewood Music Center joins us. 

Andris Nelsons
Marco Borggreve

Andris Nelsons is Music Director of the Boston Symphony Orchestra and The Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra. The Grammy Award-winning Nelsons is one of the most renowned conductors on the international scene today and we get to see him work in our own backyard here at Tanglewood.

In this interview, WAMC's Alan Chartock speaks with Nelsons about how he occupied himself during the Covid-19 pandemic, what he learned, and what he's looking forward to at Tanglewood and beyond.

Byron Stripling
byronstripling.com

Since his Carnegie Hall debut with Skitch Henderson and the New York Pops, Trumpeter and Conductor Byron Stripling has become a Pops orchestra favorite, soloing with Boston Pops, National Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony, Cincinnati Pops, Seattle Symphony, Baltimore Symphony, Dallas Symphony, to name a few.

He has been a featured soloist at the Hollywood Bowl and on the PBS television special, "Evening at Pops," with conductors John Williams and Keith Lockhart. Currently, he serves as artistic director and conductor of the highly acclaimed Columbus Jazz Orchestra.

On Saturday afternoon, July 17 at 2:30 p.m. he will be conducting the Tanglewood Family Concert - "American Melodies" - with members of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. It is a family-friendly journey through the early songs that defined America, from folk songs to spirituals, gospel to jazz.

Emanuel Ax, Joe Donahue, and Alan Chartock
Sarah LaDuke / WAMC

Tanglewood mainstay pianist Emanuel Ax, who made his Boston Symphony Orchestra debut at Tanglewood in August 1978, joined us to talk about his BSO performance in the Shed tomorrow night where Andris Nelsons conducts an All-Beethoven program.

Gail Samuel
Aram Boghosian

The Boston Symphony Orchestra has named its first female President and CEO. Gail Samuel, who currently oversees the Hollywood Bowl and LA Philharmonic, will take over the BSO on June 21.

A man in a white tuxedo stands with his arms raised in the center of an orchestra
Winslow Townson / Boston Symphony Orchestra

The annual Boston Pops Holiday season at Symphony Hall in Boston, Massachusetts is one of the greatest Christmastime traditions in New England. In a “normal” year – The Pops would perform 40 or so performances at Symphony Hall to sold out crowds.   

Like many arts organizations during the Covid-19 Pandemic,  The Boston Symphony has created new ways to experience their music.

BSO Now presents newly recorded hour-long video performances by the Boston Symphony, Boston Pops, and BSO musicians in chamber music settings -- along with behind-the-scenes storytelling with conductors, composers, and musicians, plus much more.

Keith Lockhart has been the conductor of the Boston Pops since 1995 and he joins us now to tell us about the Pops 2020 Holiday Celebration.

A white man in a white suit jacket conducts an orchestra
Marco Borggreve / BSO Press Office

The Boston Symphony Orchestra is extending the contract of music director Andris Nelsons.

Julianne Lee
Marco Borggreve

Julianne Lee has a distinctive career as both a violinist and violist, appearing frequently as a soloist, chamber musician, and orchestral player. Currently assistant principal second violinist of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Lee has been a member of the violin section since 2006.

She will perform in a "BSO Musicians in Recital from Tanglewood" concert featuring works by Mozart, Roumain and Schubert. The recital will be hosted by Lauren Ambrose and will be online at tanglewood.org on August 20.

Keith Lockhart
Marco Borggreve

Having celebrated his twenty-fifth anniversary as Boston Pops Conductor this year, Keith Lockhart is the second longest-tenured conductor of the Boston Pops Orchestra since its founding in 1885. He has conducted more than 1,800 Boston Pops concerts.

Sadly, of course, right now - there are no concerts to conduct. But The Boston Symphony Orchestra, The Boston Pops, and the Tanglewood Learning Institute are working together to provide classical music education and entertainment in new and exciting socially distances ways.

Mark Volpe
Marco Borggreve

It sounds impossible to believe, but hundreds of thousands of music lovers will not be taking in concerts from the rolling green grass at Tanglewood this summer because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. But, The Boston Symphony Orchestra is taking its acclaimed, months-long music festival into the digital realm.

BSO musicians — along with a wide range of guest artists — are helping to produce original, pre-recorded performances for the new Tanglewood 2020 Online Festival.

Mark Volpe is the President and CEO of The BSO and he joined us.

On Friday, July 3, Tanglewood will present violinist Gil Shaham performing a new program for unaccompanied violin for the "Great Performers in Recital from Tanglewood" Series. Shaham will play works by three living American composers (including two works written for him) and works by Bach and Prokofiev.

Gil Shaham made his Tanglewood debut 27 years ago. He is is one of the foremost violinists of our time and is sought after throughout the world for concerto appearances with leading orchestras and conductors, and regularly gives recitals and appears with ensembles on the world’s great concert stages and at the most prestigious festivals.

Jamie Bernstein
Steve J. Sherman / Star Tribune

Jamie Bernstein is an author, narrator, and filmmaker. Her memoir, "Famous Father Girl," details her youth growing up with her father, composer-conductor Leonard Bernstein, and her mother, pianist and actress Felicia Montealegre.

This summer, Jamie Bernstein will introduce online airings of special Boston Symphony Orchestra Encore Performances from Tanglewood. The concerts will feature the BSO and Tanglewood Festival Chorus and will be available online on Sundays at 2:30 p.m. July 5 through August 23.

Sarah LaDuke

The Boston Symphony Orchestra’s Tanglewood 2020 Online Festival will soon be underway.

The venerable Lenox, Massachusetts concert grounds are shuttered for live music due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Boston Symphony Orchestra Artistic Administrator Tony Fogg says the virtual summer season will mirror a normal schedule beginning this week.

The schedule includes new content from Yo-Yo Ma and Emanuel Ax, as well as programming from the Tanglewood Learning Institute. To tell us more, we welcome Tony Fogg and Tanglewood Learning Institute Director Sue Elliott.

Emanuel Ax
Lisa Marie Mazzucco / https://emanuelax.com/

Pianist and Tanglewood mainstay Emanuel Ax made his Boston Symphony Orchestra debut at Tanglewood in 1978. In this modified online season, Ax will perform a Great Performers Recital online on Saturday, July 11 at 8 p.m. The event will be hosted by Nicole Cabell.

Ax will perform music in which he is an acknowledged master - an all-Beethoven program featuring two of the composer’s earlier sonatas. He will also perform in August with friend and collaborator, cellist Yo-Yo Ma. 

A sign for the Upper West Lot sits in front of an empty field
Josh Landes / WAMC News

The Boston Symphony Orchestra’s decision to cancel the summer season at Tanglewood means a grim forecast for Berkshire County’s economy.

A sign for the Upper West Lot sits in front of an empty field
Josh Landes / WAMC News

The Boston Symphony Orchestra has canceled the summer season at its Lenox, Massachusetts concert venue Tanglewood.

The Boston Symphony Orchestra Logo
Boston Symphony Orchestra

While the Boston Symphony Orchestra is reporting furloughs in addition to schedule cancelations that have raised questions about a summer Tanglewood season, Berkshire Theatre Group says it’s planning an August 1st opening. 

A man in a white tuxedo stands with his arms raised in the center of an orchestra
Winslow Townson / Boston Symphony Orchestra

For the first time since 1890, the Boston Pops are canceling their spring season. 

The Boston Symphony Orchestra Logo
Boston Symphony Orchestra

The Boston Symphony Orchestra has canceled its February tour of East Asia, citing concerns about the new coronavirus. 

Marco Borggreve / Boston Symphony Orchestra

The longtime president and CEO of the Boston Symphony Orchestra will retire in a year.

James Burton
Boston Symphony Orhestra

This past Tuesday, during the Tanglewood on Parade Gala, the world premiere of James Burton's "The Lost Words" for children's choir and orchestra.

Burton is the BSO's choral director and conductor of the Tanglewood Festival Chorus and he also leads the Boston Symphony Children's Choir, which he formed last year. Burton was appointed in February 2017 to succeed John Oliver, who formed the chorus in 1970, retired in 2015 and died last year.

Coming to Tanglewood is an experience that begins before the first note is played at any given concert. The buildings, lawns, and gardens were created and are maintained with the utmost care.

Whether you picnic on the lawn, stroll around the grounds, or even make a bee-line for your seat last minute, you can’t help but notice the beauty all around you when you are here.

We had the opportunity to get some behind-the-scenes on how it all happens with Director of Tanglewood Facilities Bobby Lahart and Tanglewood Grounds Supervisor Bruce Peeples. 

Steve Carver
tli.org

Long-time Tanglewood piano technician Steve Carver will be featured in a Tanglewood Learning Institute "Meet the Makers" event on Monday afternoon at 1:30 in the Linde Center.

At the event, Carver will give an in-depth look at the art and science of keeping concert instruments in high-performing condition. Attendees can enjoy a sneak peek at the engineering and artistry of Steinway Spirio — the legendary instrument maker’s newest invention and the world’s finest high-resolution player piano.

Carver recently retired from his position of manager of piano maintenance and chief piano technician at The Juilliard School. He has also been the chief concert technician for the Tanglewood Music Festival for ten years and was previously a concert technician at the Aspen Music Festival and School and the Chautauqua Institution.

Thomas Wilkins is Music Director of the Omaha Symphony, a position he has held since 2005. Additionally he is Principal Guest Conductor of the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra and holds the Germeshausen Family and Youth Concert Conductor chair with the Boston Symphony - and in that role, he will be conducting the Tanglewood Family Concert tomorrow morning at 10 a.m. at Ozawa Hall. The concert provides an engaging concert experience especially for children ages 3–8 and their families.

Paul Lewis in profile, facing left, left hand on chin, bent at elbo
Kaupo Kikkas

Tonight in The Shed at Tanglewood, Andris Nelsons will conduct a performance of Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 2, and closes the program with Ravel’s complete “Daphnis and Chloé,” featuring the Tanglewood Festival Chorus, James Burton, conductor. In between these two works, Paul Lewis, returning to Tanglewood for his eighth summer in a row, takes center stage to perform Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 12 in A.

Paul Lewis is internationally regarded as one of the leading musicians of his generation and as one of the world’s foremost interpreters of the central European classical repertoire.

In addition to his performance in The Shed tonight, Lewis will perform a recital of music by Haydn, Brahms, and Beethoven at Ozawa Hall on July 30.

Tony Fogg has been Artistic Administrator of the Boston Symphony Orchestra since 1994 and assists the Music Director in the planning and selection of all BSO concerts and repertoire.

He joins us to talk about upcoming performances at Tanglewood.

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