|WHAT'S HAPPENING NOW (ARCHIVE)|
|23 MARCH 2017||NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC EMBARKS ON SPRING 2017 TOUR|
In his final season as music director of the New York Philharmonic, Alan Gilbert brings the orchestra on tour across Europe. Highlights of the spring tour include The orchestra brings fourteen concerts to nine cities, highlights including Prokofiev's Violin Concerto No. 1 with soloist Frank Peter Zimmerman, soprano Christina Lanshamer in Mahler's Symphony No. 4, and the European premiere of Esa-Pekka Salonen's Cello Concerto performed by Yo-Yo Ma. |
On April 3, the orchestra brings a program of Salonen and Mahler to Hamburg's new concert hall the Elbphilarmonie, and returns the following evening to perform John Adams's Harmonielehre.
Explore the New York Philharmonic's European tour schedule.
|8 MARCH 2017||CELEBRATING JOHN ADAMS AT THE NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC||
This month, Alan Gilbert leads two programs of works by John Adams, celebrating the American composer's 70th birthday year. The New York Philharmonic String Quartet makes its debut with Adams's Absolute Jest on March 9, 10, and 11, in a program that also includes the landmark, Schoenberg-inspired orchestral work, Harmonielehre. The following week, Alan Gilbert returns to the podium to conduct Adams's The Chairman Dances, Berlioz's Symphony fantastique, and the New York Premiere of Esa-Pekka Salonen's Cello Concerto with soloist Yo-Yo Ma. The program runs from March 15 to 18 – find tickets and information here.
||1 MARCH 2017||NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC ANNOUNCES ALAN GILBERT'S FINAL NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC CONCERTS, "CELEBRATING THE POWER OF MUSIC TO UNITE ACROSS BORDERS"||
The New York Philharmonic has announced the program for the final subscription concerts of Alan Gilbert's tenure as Music Director. The groundbreaking concert series will highlight the transformational and global power of music, with musicians invited from all around the world – Cuba, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Lebanon, Mexico, Russia, South Africa, Turkey, Venezuela, and more.
Inspired by his communications with Jan Eliasson, former Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations, Alan Gilbert developed the program to bring together musicians from across borders to encourage peace and unity during times of hardship.
"Music has a unique capacity to connect people’s hearts and souls," Alan Gilbert said. "How can we, as musicians, do our small part to be a positive forum, to help effect social change and respond to adversity in a world faced with unprecedented challenges? The New York Philharmonic, which has always been an international ensemble, has done so much as a global ambassador throughout its history, and I am honored to showcase this message with this great Orchestra in my hometown of New York City."
The program, which runs June 8 to 10, includes Mahler's Symphony No. 7 and features soloist Yo-Yo Ma on June 8 and Wynton Marsalis on June 9. Read more about the concerts and Alan Gilbert's new global initiative.
|28 FEBRUARY 2017||MAHLER 4 AND WORLD PREMIERE OF LERA AUERBACH'S "NYX: FRACTURED DREAMS" WITH LEONIDAS KAVAKOS||
Alan Gilbert leads the New York Philharmonic in the World Premiere of Lera Auerbach's "NYx: Fractured Dreams" – a Philharmonic commission written for Artist-In-Residence Leonidas Kavakos – on March 1, 2, and 3. The program also includes Mahler's Symphony No. 4 with soprano Christina Landshamer.
"NYx: Fractured Dreams" is Auerbach's fourth concerto, and finds inspiration in Nyx, the Greek goddess of the night and New York City. Information and tickets here.
|8 DECEMBER 2016||DECEMBER AT THE NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC||
Alan Gilbert's busy December at the New York Philharmonic begins with five seasonal performances of Handel's Messiah December 13 through 17, in which his "decisive phrasing, generally brisk pacing and insistence on crystalline textures" previously impressed the New York Times as "magical". Christina Landshamer, Tim Mead, Matthew Polenzani and John Relyea perform as soloists alongside the Concert Chorale of New York.
Marking the first in The New York Commissions – a trio of works commissioned from composers based in the city, writing on New York themes, to be premiered over three seasons – Alan conducts the world premiere of The Jungle (Symphony No. 4) by Pulitzer Prize-winner Wynton Marsalis, the Managing & Artistic Director of Jazz at Lincoln Center, which joins the New York Philharmonic in the performances on December 28, 29, and 30 as well as January 3. Also on the program are William Bolcom's Trombone Concerto with New York Philharmonic principal Joseph Alessi as soloist and Copland's Quiet City featuring principal trumpet Christopher Martin and English horn player Grace Shryock.
At the New York Philharmonic's annual New Year's Eve celebration, Alan leads the New York Philharmonic and mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato in an evening of American classics, including works by Rodgers & Hammerstein and others.
|23 NOVEMBER 2016||TCHAIKOVSKY, ADAMS, AND BARTÓK AT THE BERLIN PHILHARMONIC
A regular guest of the Berlin Philharmonic, Alan Gilbert returns to the celebrated orchestra December 2 through 4 for concerts at the Berliner Philharmonie. The program includes Tchaikovsky's Fourth Symphony, of which Alan's "hypercharged" account was a highlight of the New York Philharmonic's "blistering Disney Hall debut" (Los Angeles Times). Juxtaposed with the feverish despair of that Russian masterwork are Short Ride in a Fast Machine and Lollapalooza by John Adams – the Berlin Philharmonic's current Composer-in-Residence – and Bartók's Second Violin Concerto with Frank Peter Zimmermann as soloist. Alan's association with the German violinist is of long standing. It was he who appointed Zimmermann as the New York Philharmonic's 2011-12 Artist-in-Residence, when their concerto collaborations included a performance of the Bach "Double" with the Music Director himself on violin; as the New York Times wrote, "the interplay between them was graceful ... and took on an appealing visceral quality." After their Berlin engagement, the two look forward to reuniting once again on the New York Philharmonic's upcoming European tour.
Find more information and tickets here to Alan's performances with the Berlin Philharmonic. The December 3 performance can be streamed here live via the orchestra's Digital Concert Hall starting at 1pm ET/7pm CT.
|1 NOVEMBER 2016||PORGY AND BESS AT LA SCALA
Alan Gilbert makes his return to the Teatro alla Scala on November 13, when he helps premiere a new semi-staged production of Porgy and Bess by stage director Philipp Harnoncourt. Starring bass Morris Robinson and soprano Kristin Lewis in the title roles, with original video design by Max Kaufmann and Eva Grün, this marks the first time that the original version of Gershwin's score will be presented at the Milan house in its entirety. Alan made his debut with the Filarmonica della Scala last fall, leading Beethoven's Symphony No. 6, "Pastoral" and Bartok's one-act opera Bluebeard's Castle. Find tickets and more information here about Porgy and Bess performances, which take place on November 13, 15, 17, 18, 20, 22, and 23.
||19 OCTOBER 2016||A RETURN TO THE LEIPZIG GEWANDHAUS ORCHESTRA WITH SOLOIST INON BARNATAN
Alan Gilbert reunites the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra this fall, leading the ensemble in three performances taking place Thursday, October 20 through Saturday, October 22.Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 2 opens the program featuring soloist Inon Barantan, the Israeli pianist who is now launching his third and final season as the New York Philharmonic’s inaugural Artist-in-Association. The two long-time collaborators are presently in the process of recording Beethoven’s complete piano concertos with London’s Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, representing the first time that ensemble will have captured the full cycle on disc.
The first two programs at the Leipzig Gewandhaus also include Bartok's one-act psychological thriller Bluebeard's Castle, sung in concert by Mikhail Petrenko as Bluebeard and Michelle DeYoung as Judith. Alan’s final Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra concert on October 22 is followed by a special “talk and performance” event for which he and Inon join German TV personality Malte Arkona. Find tickets and more information here.
|14 OCTOBER 2016||NATIONAL ARTS CLUB SALUTES ALAN GILBERT WITH MEDAL OF HONOR IN MUSIC
The National Arts Club has bestowed Alan Gilbert with its Medal of Honor in Music as he begins the final season of his tenure with the New York Philharmonic. The award recognizes Alan's wide-ranging contributions to the Philharmonic and symphonic music in the 21st century, from creating new ways for audiences to experience the art form to music education though his position as Director of Conducting and Orchestral Studies at the Juilliard School. Past honorees of the award include Placido Domingo, James Levine, Daniel Barenboim, Van Cliburn, Isaac Stern, and Emanuel Ax.
The awards presentation on Thursday, October 13 included speeches by Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations H.E. Mr. Jan Eliasson and Juilliard School Provost and Dean Ara Guzelimian, as well as a short performance by pianist and New York Philharmonic Artist-in-Association Inon Barnatan.
|5 OCTOBER 2016||SOLOIST LANG LANG AND LIGETI'S MYSTERIES OF THE MACABRE AT THE NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC
Alan Gilbert leads the New York Philharmonic in Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 4, with Lang Lang as soloist; Bartók's Music for Strings, Percussion, and Celesta; and Ligeti's Mysteries of the Macabre, with Principal Trumpet Christopher Martin as soloist, Thursday, October 6, through Saturday, October 8. In an additional performance on Wednesday, October 5, Beethoven's piano concerto is replaced with his Symphony No. 5.
An arrangement of three arias from Ligeti's Le Grand Macabre, these performances of Mysteries of the Macabre recollect a signature moment from Alan Gilbert's inaugural season, when he led a sold-out staged production of the opera, later named named New York Magazine's number one classical music event of 2010 and "the greatest triumph achieved by any New York musical institution in 2010" by the New York Times.
Find tickets and more information here for the October 5 program and here for the concerts on October 6, 7, and 8.
|27 SEPTEMBER 2016||LES NUITS D'ÉTÉ WITH MAGDALENA KOŽENÁ AT THE NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC
Alan Gilbert leads New York Philharmonic and mezzo-soprano Magdalena Kožená in Les Nuits d'été, Hector Berlioz's song cycle of love and loss, Thursday, September 29 through Saturday, October 1 at David Geffen Hall.
This work is paired with Rimsky-Korsakov's symphonic suite Scheherazade, which Alan and the New York Philharmonic performed in October 2012 to the following praise from the New York Times: "The orchestra sounded superb here as elsewhere; Mr. Gilbert led a full-blooded and kaleidoscopic rendition, with sensuous string playing and alluring woodwind solos that vividly evoked languid Arabian nights." Find tickets and more information here.
|12 SEPTEMBER 2016||LAUNCHING THE 2016-17 SEASON AT THE NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC
In seven years as Music Director of the New York Philharmonic, Alan Gilbert has continued to evolve the role of the modern orchestra; as the New York Times put it, "helping to change the template for what an American orchestra can be." The eighth and final season of Gilbert's tenure, which also marks the Philharmonic's 175th anniversary season, not only honors their shared hometown, but also celebrates this extraordinary legacy. Thus world premieres of new Philharmonic commissions rub shoulders with iconic masterworks and an adventurous opera performance; artistic residencies continue to forge and nurture meaningful musical partnerships; innovative programming explores the ways music can foster global community and positive change; and the conductor and orchestra once again take their vision overseas on their seventh and final European tour together.
To launch his farewell season at the Philharmonic, Gilbert leads the Opening Gala Concert on September 21 that pays tribute to their native city. The New York premiere of John Corigliano's Stomp, for Orchestra shares the program with two key New York works of the past: Gershwin's Concerto in F, which the Philharmonic commissioned and premiered, with American jazz virtuoso Aaron Diehl, and Dvorák's Symphony No. 9, "From the New World," which the Philharmonic premiered in 1893. This work forms the centerpiece of the orchestra's season-long New World Initiative, which seeks to make the beloved symphony a cultural touchstone for as many New Yorkers as possible. By way of an upbeat to the new season, for the fourth edition of The Art of the Score: Film Week at the Philharmonic, Gilbert and the Philharmonic – the orchestra that anchored the film's original soundtrack recording – accompany a screening of Woody Allen's Manhattan on September 16 and 17 with the first live-to-film performance of its classic Gershwin score.
For the season's first subscription concerts, accounts of Dvořák's New World Symphony are paired with Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto featuring former Artist-in-Residence Lisa Batiashvili on September 22, 23, and 24 and with Corigliano's Stomp and Mozart's Clarinet Concerto performed by Principal Clarinet Anthony McGill on September 27.
|25 AUGUST 2016||IN RESIDENCE AT THE LUCERNE FESTIVAL ACADEMY
Alan Gilbert visits Lucerne, Switzerland August 29 through September 4 for a week of conducting masterclasses and concerts with Lucerne Festival Academy musicians. He leads the summer finale concert of the Orchestra of the Lucerne Festival Academy on Sunday, September 4 at the KKL Luzern with a program looking back at the beginnings of modernism and the musical context from which it emerged. Arnold Schoenberg's symphonic poem Pélleas et Mélisande, written in the musical language of late Romanticism, is preceded by two works that feature soloist Anne-Sophie Mutter: Alban Berg's moving Violin Concerto, "To the memory of an angel," and Norbert Moret's En rêve, which was composed in 1988 for the violinist. An additional short concert on Friday, September 2 features only Berg's Concerto.
||5 AUGUST 2016||NOW AVAILABLE: LIVE RECORDING OF MESSIAEN'S DES CANYONS AUX ÉTOILES...
Last summer, as Artist-in-Residence of the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, Alan Gilbert led an all-star orchestra of 44 superlative musicians in an account of Olivier Messiaen's monumental and otherworldly twelve-movement, 90-minute orchestral masterpiece, Des canyons aux étoiles... (From the Canyons to the Stars...). Marking a major milestone in the festival's history, the performance – featuring the largest ensemble ever gathered there for a single work – was recorded live for release and is now available on the Entertainment One Music label.
On the recording, Alan conducts an orchestra that includes many of his close musical friends and collaborators. In a work requiring staggering virtuosity from all players, his frequent collaborator Inon Barnatan plays the notoriously challenging piano part, including the fourth and ninth movements (Le cossyphe d'Heuglin "The white-browed robin-chat" and Le moqueur polyglotte "The mockingbird"), which are scored for solo piano.
Commissioned by art patron Alice Tully for the U.S. bicentennial and premiered at Lincoln Center in 1974, Canyons celebrates the awe-inspiring beauty of the great canyons of southwest Utah, which include Cedar Breaks, Bryce Canyon, and Zion National Park. Encompassing a characteristically Messiaenic mix of birdsong, modernist experimentalism, and religious mysticism, the work expresses the composer's faith in the power of nature to communicate the very essence of God.
Listen to Des canyons aux étoiles... here on iTunes, here on Amazon, and here on Spotify.
|23 JULY 2016||A WEEK ON THE PODIUM IN TOKYO AND COLORADO
Alan Gilbert makes his return to Japan in July, conducting the Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra on two consecutive evenings at Suntory Hall. Mozart's Symphony No. 25 is paired with Mahler's Symphony No. 5 in both concerts. Find tickets and more information here about these performances on Sunday, July 24 and Monday, July 25.
Just two days later, Alan takes the helm of the New York Philharmonic at Bravo! Vail in Colorado for the first of three concerts as part of the orchestra's 14th annual summer residency. The Wednesday, July 27 performance features New York Philharmonic Principal Trombone Joseph Alessi as soloist in William Bolcom's Trombone Concerto, followed by Richard Strauss's Ein Heldenleben. Leila Josefowicz is soloist on Thursday, July 28 in Prokofiev's Violin Concerto No. 1, with Beethoven's Symphony No. 3, "Eroica" also on the program. The New York Philharmonic's residency culminates with a final concert on Friday, July 29, featuring bass-baritone and New York Philharmonic Artist-in-Residence Eric Owens alongside soprano Heidi Melton in selections from Wagner's Tristan and Isolde and Die Walküre.
|17 JULY 2016||NOMINATED FOR 2016 EMMY AWARD IN BEST MUSIC DIRECTION
Alan Gilbert has been nominated for the 2016 Emmy Award in Best Musical Direction for Sinatra: Voice for a Century, which was broadcast nationwide by PBS's Live From Lincoln Center on December 18, 2015.
Co-presented by the New York Philharmonic and Lincoln Center, the gala concert on December 3, 2015 celebrated the music of Frank Sinatra on the occasion of the American musical icon's 100th birthday through performances of songs with which he was closely associated. Alan led the orchestra and a lineup of performers including Seth McFarlane (who also served as host), Christina Aguilera, Chris Botti, Fantasia, Sutton Foster, Bernadette Peters, Sting, Billy Porter, and Kyle Dean Massey. Alan was nominated in 2015 for an Emmy Award in the same category for his leadership of Stephen Sondheim's thriller Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber Of Fleet Street with the New York Philharmonic and special guests, also featured on Live From Lincoln Center. Watch Sinatra: Voice for a Century now on pbs.org.
|14 JULY 2016||IN RESIDENCE AT SANTA BARBARA'S MUSIC ACADEMY OF THE WEST
As part of an ongoing partnership between the New York Philharmonic and Santa Barbara's Music Academy of the West, Alan Gilbert is spending a week at the festival as a Luria Foundation Artist in Residence, a program that focuses on artists who bring forward-thinking perspectives across all disciplines and areas of classical music training. His activities include coaching and instruction with festival fellows, culminating in a performance with members of the Academy Festival Orchestra on Saturday, July 16 featuring Berg's Three Pieces for Orchestra, "The Representation of Chaos" from Haydn's The Creation, and Beethoven's Symphony No. 3, "Eroica". Alan is accompanied by five New York Philharmonic musicians, who are performing and training fellows in collaboration with Music Academy faculty, including masterclasses, chamber music coachings, private lessons, and lectures. Find tickets and more information about Alan's performance with the Academy Festival Orchestra here.
||23 JUNE 2016||LEADING THE NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC'S SECOND ANNUAL PERFORMANCE RESIDENCY IN SHANGHAI
Alan Gilbert and the New York Philharmonic undertake their second annual performance residency in Shanghai July 2 through 8 under the auspices of the Shanghai Orchestra Academy and Residency Partnership. This joint endeavor with the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra includes a two-year program designed to address the need for advanced, postgraduate orchestral training in China in partnership with the Shanghai Conservatory as well as annual performance residencies by the New York Philharmonic in Shanghai through the 2017-18 season. The residency follows a trip earlier this month by Shanghai Orchestra Academy students to New York City to participate in the New York Philharmonic Global Academy Fellowship Program as the first international Zarin Mehta Fellows.
While in Shanghai, Alan conducts the New York Philharmonic in Prokofiev's Piano Concerto No. 2 with soloist Daniil Trifonov and R. Strauss's Ein Heldenleben on July 2 at Shanghai Symphony Hall and on July 4 at the Shanghai Poly Grand Theatre. The July 4 program also includes Beethoven's Fidelio Overture. Alan also leads Boulez's Messagesquisse with Philharmonic cellist Eric Bartlett as soloist along with Philharmonic cellists Patrick Jee, Qiang Tu, Sumire Kudo, Maria Kitsopoulos, and Alexei Yupanqui Gonzales and guest cellist Wendy Sutter as the ensemble; Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto with soloist Gil Shaham; and Beethoven's Symphony No. 3, "Eroica" on July 8 at Shanghai Symphony Hall.
Other activities associated with the Shanghai Orchestra Academy (SOA) include master classes, lessons, coachings, and a side-by-side Philharmonic rehearsal with Academy students; a Very Young Composers workshop and performance; and a free, public, outdoor concert featuring the New York Philharmonic Principal Brass Quintet. Find more information about the Shanghai Orchestra Academy and Residency Partnership here.
|14 JUNE 2016||NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC CONCERTS IN THE PARKS
Alan Gilbert leads the New York Philharmonic in five free outdoor concerts throughout New York City as part of the orchestra's annual Concerts in the Parks series, now in its 51st season. Performances take place in Manhattan's Central Park on June 15 and 16, Brooklyn's Prospect Park on June 17, Cunningham Park in Queens on June 20, and the Bronx's Van Cortlandt Park on June 21, all starting at 8pm.
"We at the New York Philharmonic are planning to dedicate tonight's concert in Central Park to the victims in Orlando," says Alan. "As human beings, as musicians, and as an institution, we categorically denounce intolerance and violence of any kind."
The varied programs feature Mozart's Clarinet Concerto, with Principal Clarinet Anthony McGill as soloist; R. Strauss's Ein Heldenleben; Wagner's Prelude and Liebestod from Tristan und Isolde; Beethoven's Symphony No. 3, "Eroica"; Rossini's La gazza ladra Overture, and Beethoven's Fidelio Overture. Fireworks shows by Bay Fireworks bring a grand finale to each concert.
Find more information at nyphil.org/parks.
|24 MAY 2016||MEMORIAL DAY WITH THE NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC AT THE CATHEDRAL CHURCH OF SAINT JOHN THE DIVINE
Alan Gilbert leads the New York Philharmonic in Brahms's Symphony No. 2 and "Lord God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel" from Mendelssohn's Elijah on Monday, May 30 at the orchestra's 25th Annual Free Memorial Day Concert at the Cathedral Church of Saint John the Divine. This year's concert will be dedicated to the New York Philharmonic's late Music Director Emeritus Kurt Masur, who inaugurated the annual tradition in 1992 as a gift to the people of New York City.
Alan will present an address in Masur's memory alongside trumpet player and Jazz at Lincoln Center Artistic and Managing Director Wynton Marsalis as well as baritone Thomas Hampson, who will be the soloist in the Mendelssohn work. Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis; tickets will be handed out at 6pm on the day of the performance at the Cathedral Church of Saint John the Divine. Audio of the performance will be broadcast onto the adjacent Pulpit Green, weather permitting. Find more information here.
|22 MAY 2016||2016 NY PHIL BIENNIAL
Alan Gilbert has co-curated the second NY PHIL BIENNIAL, a wide-ranging exploration of today's music by an array of contemporary and modern composers taking place From May 23 to June 11. A flagship project that marks one of the most significant innovations of his tenure, the NY PHIL BIENNIAL is a kaleidoscopic, citywide new-music immersion that proved a resounding success at its launch two years ago, when the New York Times called it "perhaps the most ambitious and extensive contemporary-music festival yet overseen by an American orchestra."
June 3 through 5, Alan conducts the Ensemble of the Lucerne Festival Alumni at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in "Ligeti Forward", three programs exploring György Ligeti as a fountainhead of modern music ten years after the composer's death. Three of Ligeti's concertos — featuring pianist Conor Hanick, cellist Jay Campbell and violinist Pekka Kuusisto, respectively — are paired with works by composers including Marc-André Dalbavie and John Zorn. All three concerts will be webcast live on metmuseum.org. Find more information here about program I, program II, and program III.
Alan and the New York Philharmonic present works by two American composers of the same generation on June 10 at David Geffen Hall. Opening the program is the world premiere of a Trombone Concerto by William Bolcom featuring Philharmonic Principal Trombone Joseph Alessi. The New York Premiere of John Corigliano's Conjurer follows with percussionist Martin Grubinger as soloist. Find more information here about this program.
Alan and the New York Philharmonic present the 2016 NY PHIL BIENNIAL finale on June 11 at David Geffen Hall. Per Nørgård's Symphony No. 8 has its US premiere, followed by Messagesquisse by former New York Philharmonic Music Director Pierre Boulez, in tribute to the late composer/conductor and champion of the music of our time. The evening closes with New York premiere of the Second Concerto for Orchestra by Pulitzer Prize winner Steven Stucky, in honor of the late composer. More information can be found here.
|19 MAY 2016||ALAN GILBERT RECEIVES RUDIN AWARD FROM NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
Alan has been presented with New York University's Lewis Rudin Award for Exemplary Service to New York City, recognizing his leadership in making New York one of the world's great centers for music and the arts. He received the prize at a special ceremony proceeding the university's commencement exercises. The event's other honorees included scientist Emmanuelle Charpentier, actor and director Billy Crystal, congressman and civil rights leader John Lewis, Judge Margaret Marshall, and businesswoman Chandrika Tandon. Find more information here.
||3 MAY 2016||CALIFORNIA 2016 TOUR WITH THE NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC
Alan Gilbert leads the New York Philharmonic on tour — his ninth with the orchestra — to California, with stops in Costa Mesa, San Diego, and San Francisco Tuesday, May 3 through Saturday, May 7.
The concerts feature two programs, the first one spotlighting Principal Cello Carter Brey performing the Schumann concerto coupled with two works by Schumann's protégé, Brahms: the Tragic Overture and Symphony No. 2. This program bookends the tour, and is presented on May 3 at Costa Mesa's Segerstrom Center for the Arts and on May 7 at San Francisco's Davies Symphony Hall, the last of two concerts presented by the San Francisco Symphony. The second program pairs Beethoven's Egmont Overture and Symphony No. 7 with two masterworks by Sibelius — the Symphony No. 7 and Finlandia — extending the orchestra's season-long celebration of the 150th anniversary of Sibelius's birth to California. These works are performed on May 4 at San Diego's Jacobs Music Center-Copley Symphony Hall and on May 6, again at Davies Symphony Hall in San Francisco. Find more information about the New York Philharmonic's California 2016 tour here.
|27 APRIL 2016||FRANCK KRAWCZYK WORLD PREMIERE, SCHUMANN, AND BRAHMS AT THE NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC
Alan Gilbert leads the New York Philharmonic in the world premiere of Franck Krawczyk's Après Wednesday, April 27 though Saturday, April 30 at David Geffen Hall. This work was was commissioned as part of the New York Philharmonic’s Marie-Josée Kravis Prize for New Music, awarded every two years to a composer for extraordinary artistic endeavor in the field of new music. The third movement of Après was written in homage to the late Henri Dutilleux, with whom Krawczyk shared the inaugural Prize in 2011.
"Being one of those whom Maître Henri Dutilleux honored with this prize is priceless to me," says Franck Krawczyk. "He kept a relationship to truth in everything he perceived. He wrote with the constant worry that it should sound true, which is what had probably kept him away from the sirens of a certain easy modernity, in favor of a staggering dive into his own personal language." Après is followed by Schumann's Cello Concerto with soloist Principal Cello Carter Brey. Symphony No. 2 by Brahms, Schumann's protégé, closes the program. Find tickets and more information here.
|11 APRIL 2016||DAS LIED VON DER ERDE WITH THE NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC AND THOMAS HAMPSON
Alan Gilbert returns to the New York Philharmonic with performances of Mahler's Das Lied von der Erde, featuring baritone Thomas Hampson and tenor Stefan Vinke, Wednesday, April 20, through Friday, April 22 at David Geffen Hall. "Thomas Hampson's interpretation of Mahler is unbelievably distinctive — he has such an affinity for this music," says Alan of the acclaimed Mahler interpreter and former New York Philharmonic Artist-in-Residence. "The tenor part is enormous and fiendishly difficult, so we are delighted to have engaged Stefan Vinke, who has the power and agility that Das Lied requires."
The program also includes Sibelius's Symphony No. 7, as part of a season-long celebration honoring the Finnish composer's 150th birthday. "Sibelius's music says something very true about all of humanity," says Alan. "His Seventh Symphony is an amazing piece, in part because of its enigmatic ending — it is difficult to decide whether it is happy or sad, a dilemma that is so true of life." Find tickets and more information here.
|31 MARCH 2016||LONDON SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA DEBUT
Alan Gilbert makes his London Symphony Orchestra debut with a pair of programs at the Barbican Centre that couple the music of Scandinavia – long one of his fields of expertise – with Russian concertos that showcase star soloists Joshua Bell and Daniil Trifonov.
For his first appearance with the London Symphony Orchestra on April 3, Alan pairs Tchaikovsky's iconic Violin Concerto, featuring superstar violinist Joshua Bell, with Sibelius's classically economical Third Symphony, the overture to Nielsen's opera Maskarade, and Exquisite Corpse (2002) by Sweden's Anders Hillborg. Commissioned for the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic's 75th anniversary, Hillborg's work is dedicated to the conductor, and it was he who recorded it for the BIS label. Find more information and tickets to this concert here.
For their second program together on April 7, Gilbert conducts the English orchestra in Nielsen's mighty Fourth Symphony, "The Inextinguishable", of which he recently led a "searing, well-paced, and deeply organic" (Cleveland Plain Dealer) account with the Cleveland Orchestra, together with Sibelius's stirring tone poem En Saga, and Prokofiev's Second Piano Concerto. For the latter, he reunites with Daniil Trifonov – "without question the most astounding young pianist of our age" (The Times, London) – who triumphantly headlined the New York Philharmonic's recent Rachmaninoff Festival; when he and Gilbert first collaborated on Prokofiev, they "clearly had chemistry" (New York Times). More information and tickets can be found here.
|15 MARCH 2016||NY PREMIERE OF ESA-PEKKA SALONEN'S KARAWANE AND SIBELIUS WITH LEONIDAS KAVAKOS
Alan Gilbert leads the New York Philharmonic in the New York Premiere of Composer-in-Residence Esa-Pekka Salonen's Karawane — a co-commission with the Tonhalle Orchestra, Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Bamberg Symphony, and Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra — Thursday, March 17 through Saturday, March 19. The program also includes Sibelius's Violin Concerto with soloist Leonidas Kavakos and Shostakovich's Suite from The Age of Gold.
"I have often spoken about how we combine pieces to create programs, and that process is all the richer when one is able to speak with composers about their thoughts on how we should present their works," says Alan. "In talking about Karawane, the quality Esa-Pekka Salonen and I both felt should guide our programming choices was its light-hearted humor, which we also both see in Shostakovich's The Age of Gold — Esa-Pekka believed that they would work very well together." Karawane is based on the poem of the same name by Hugo Ball, a founder of the Dada movement. Find tickets and more information here.
|9 MARCH 2016||QUARTET FOR THE END OF TIME AT THE TEMPLE OF DENDUR
Alan Gilbert performs on violin alongside New York Philharmonic principals and Artist-in-Association Inon Barnatan in a special performance of Messiaen's Quartet for the End of Time at the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Temple of Dendur. The Sunday, March 13 concert also features Principal Cello Carter Brey and Principal Clarinet Anthony McGill. It will be livestreamed to the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Grace Rainey Rogers Auditorium, free to attend with museum admission. Find more information here.
"Messiaen is one of my heroes," says Alan. "His music touches a spiritual side that is important to explore whether or not you are religious." As a violinist and violist, Alan has performed chamber music with New York Philharmonic musicians almost every season since 2009.
Quartet for the End of Time brings the culmination of the New York Philharmonic's Messiaen Week (March 7-13), which honors the legacy of French composer and organist Olivier Messiaen through performances of his works, from the symphonic to solo works, as well as music by those whom he influenced.
|2 MARCH 2016||NIELSEN'S INEXTINGUISHABLE WITH THE CLEVELAND ORCHESTRA
Alan Gilbert returns to the Cleveland Orchestra to conduct Carl Nielsen's vivid and dynamic Symphony No. 4, "The Inextinguishable" on Thursday, March 3, Saturday, March 5, and Sunday, March 6. The program also includes Schumann's Manfred Overture and the rarely heard Piano Concerto of Antonin Dvořák with soloist Stephen Hough.
"No one could come in and create the exquisite sound Gilbert drew out of the orchestra without knowing its capabilities and strengths," declared Cultured Cleveland of Alan's last visit to the Cleveland Orchestra in 2013, continuing to say that "It's not often that one gets to hear the vocabulary of 20th-century music so well-understood and eloquently expressed." Alan served on the conducting staff of the storied orchestra from 1994 to 1997, serving as assistant conductor to former Music Director Christoph von Dohnányi. Find tickets and more information here.
|23 FEBRUARY 2016||CELEBRATING SIBELIUS WITH THE LEIPZIG GEWANDHAUS ORCHESTRA
Alan Gilbert last conducted the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra during the launch of its 2014-15 season, when he stepped in for the eminent ensemble's music director, Riccardo Chailly to lead a tour to the Lucerne Festival, Musikfest Berlin, and London's BBC Proms. Upon his return to Leipzig on February 25 and 26, Alan commemorates the 150th anniversary of the birth of Jean Sibelius with the Finnish composer's mighty yet enigmatic Symphony No. 7. Celebrated Norwegian pianist Leif Ove Andsnes performs as soloist in Robert Schumann's Piano Concerto in A minor, with Schumann's Symphony No. 1, "Spring Symphony" and Métaboles by Henri Dutilleux rounding out the program. More information and tickets can be found here.
||3 FEBRUARY 2016||ANNOUNCING ALAN GILBERT'S FAREWELL SEASON AT THE NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC
Alan Gilbert and the the New York Philharmonic have announced the orchestra's 2016-17 season, which marks his eighth and final season in his tenure as Music Director. During this farewell season, Alan will lead programs that represent the breadth of innovative programming, adventurous productions, and forward-thinking initiatives that have been a hallmark of his tenure, and will be joined by many of his close collaborators.
Alan will conduct world, US, and New York premieres by Lera Auerbach, John Corigliano, HK Gruber, Wynton Marsalis, Esa-Pekka Salonen, and Anna Thorvaldsdottir. He will lead masterworks that include Mahler's Symphony No. 4; Brahms's Symphony No. 3; John Adams's Harmonielehre, Absolute Jest, and Short Ride in a Fast Machine; Bartók's Music for Strings, Percussion, and Celesta; Ligeti's Mysteries of the Macabre; and Handel's Messiah. In the spring of 2017, Alan will embark on his fifth and final European tour with the orchestra. To conclude his final subscription season, he will lead the orchestra and guest artists from around the world in performances that highlight important international issues and foster the idea of a global community that shares a common humanity. These concerts include a pairing of Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 and Schoenberg's A Survivor from Warsaw, the New York Premiere of Emerging Composer Anna Thorvaldsdottir's Aeriality, the New York Premiere of Composer-in-Residence Esa-Pekka Salonen's Wing on Wing, Brahms's Violin Concerto with Artist-in-Residence Leonidas Kavakos as soloist, and Wagner's complete Das Rheingold in concert.
Other new programs at the New York Philharmonic will include the New World Initiative, with a focus on the theme of "home" through performances, education projects, and community outreach, as well as the New York Commissions, featuring world premieres by New York-themed works by New York-based composers including Wynton Marsalis, Sean Shepherd, and Julia Wolfe. Violinist Leonidas Kavakos has been named Artist-in-Residence for the 2016–17 season. Esa-Pekka Salonen will begin the second of his three seasons as Composer-in-Residence and Inon Barnatan will begin his third and final season as the New York Philharmonic's inaugural Artist-in-Association.
"The New York Philharmonic has always been and will always be my musical home," Alan says. "My final season as Music Director — and the Philharmonic's 175th anniversary season — will present music that the orchestra and I love, and will celebrate New York City, our shared hometown. Looking back on my tenure, I am particularly proud that the projects and collaborative approach I introduced in my first season are now woven into the fabric of the Philharmonic. I will always treasure the sense of warmth and family with the musicians of the orchestra: there's nothing better than to share the stage with friends. My final weeks encapsulate some of my musical aspirations, with the final subscription program examining a question I see as crucial to the future: how music can be a positive force in a world faced with crises. It speaks in part to what I hope I have accomplished at this great orchestra — to make music an essential part of this city, our world, and people's lives."
Read more here about what's planned for the New York Philharmonic's 2016-17 season.
|1 FEBRUARY 2016||ALAN GILBERT AND FRANK PETER ZIMMERMAN REPRISE LINDBERG IN FRENCH PREMIERE
"The work, in three continuous movements interrupted only by an extended cadenza, is big and attractive, deeply satisfying in its proportions and contours," wrote the New York Times of Magnus Lindberg's Violin Concerto No. 2, which Alan presented with the New York Philharmonic and Frank Peter Zimmermann in its US premiere. Two months later on February 19, Alan and Mr. Zimmerman take the stage of the Philharmonie de Paris with the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France in the French premiere of the work, a co-commission written for the violinist. Also included on the evening's program are two works by Robert Schumann: Manfred Overture and Symphony No. 1, "Spring Symphony". Find tickets and more information here.
||24 JANUARY 2016||A VISIT TO JAPAN: THE TOKYO METROPOLITAN SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA AND INON BARNATAN
Alan Gilbert ends January with a visit to Japan, where he leads the Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra in three concert halls across the city. January 26 and 27 brings A Ring Synthesis — his own arrangement of selections from Wagner's "Ring" cycle — plus Sibelius's tone poem En Saga and Takemitsu's Twill by Twilight to Suntory Hall and Tokyo Opera City.
Alan then reunites with New York Philharmonic Artist-in-Association Inon Barnatan on January 30 for Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 3, not long after the duo's performance of this work with the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields and subsequent recording sessions of the full Beethoven piano concerto cycle. The evening's program at the Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre is rounded out by Beethoven's Symphony No. 7. Find tickets and more information here.
|14 JANUARY 2016||A LINDBERG PREMIERE WITH FRANK PETER ZIMMERMANN AND THE RITE OF SPRING
Alan Gilbert leads the New York Philharmonic and soloist Frank Peter Zimmermann in the US premiere of Magnus Lindberg's Violin Concerto No. 2 — a New York Philharmonic co-commission written for the violinist — Thursday, January 14 through Saturday, January 16 at David Geffen Hall. Also included on the program are Stravinsky's seminal Rite of Spring as well as Respighi's Church Windows, inspired by Italian stained glass.
During Magnus Lindberg's tenure as the New York Philharmonic's Composer-in Residence from 2009 to 2012, Alan conducted many works by the Finnish composer including world premieres of the composer's EXPO, Al largo, Souvenir, and Piano Concerto No. 2 with Yefim Bronfman, plus the Clarinet Concerto with Kari Kriikku and Kraft at Volkswagen's Transparent Factory in Dresden. In October 2015, Alan led the New York Philharmonic in the world premiere of Lindberg's Vivo at Carnegie Hall's opening night gala. Find tickets and more information here.
|6 JANUARY 2016||WAGNER AND STRAUSS WITH ERIC OWENS AT THE NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC
Alan Gilbert leads bass-baritone and New York Philharmonic Artist-in-Residence Eric Owens in songs by Richard Strauss songs — "Ruhe, meine Seele," Op. 27, No. 1; "Cäcilie," Op. 27, No. 2; "Pilgers Morgenlied," Op. 33, No. 4 — and the Final Scene from Act III of Wagner's Die Walküre alongside with soprano Heidi Melton, with performances January 7 through 9 and 12. The program also includes Wagner's Ride of the Valkyries and Sibelius's tone poem En saga, one of several programs this season honoring the 150th anniversary of the Finnish master's birth. At an additional matinee concert on January 9, Alan reprises his "exciting account" (New York Times) of Sibelius's Symphony No. 4, precluded by Grieg's String Quartet performed by New York Philharmonic principal musicians.
"Eric is the quintessential Wotan," says Alan of the bass-baritone, who is widely acclaimed for his mastery of the German Romantic repertoire. "His voice is perfect for the role, and he can bring out its complexity — its heroism, but also its vulnerability. Performing it without staging can be a challenge, but Eric's singing is so expressive that he will bring the character to life through his voice alone. In this he will be helped by the Philharmonic musicians, who can play Wagner's technically difficult passages not only with flair but also with amazing tonal depth. Conducting Wagner with this orchestra is more than a dream-come-true; they have a quintessential way with his music." Find tickets and more information here.
|26 DECEMBER 2015||ENDING THE YEAR WITH A SIBELIUS 150 TRIBUTE AND NEW YEAR'S EVE CONCERT
In honor of of the 150th birthday of Sibelius, Alan Gilbert joins the New York Philharmonic for the composer's The Swan of Tuonela, Symphony No. 4, and Finlandia. The evening's program — on December 29 and 30 as well as January 2 — also includes guest soloist Joshua Bell performing Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto. "Sibelius is one of the great 20th-century symphonists, and the 150th anniversary of his birth is an event to be celebrated by orchestras that have been enriched by his music. His music says something very true about all of humanity," says Alan. "The Fourth Symphony is deeply pessimistic and profoundly tragic, and deciding to perform it is a commitment to a very difficult emotional road, but its evocation of a powerfully visceral, emotional landscape is what makes it so astonishing." Find more information about the Sibelius program here.
To close out 2015, Alan conducts the New York Philharmonic's annual New Year's Eve concert. "La Vie Parisienne" includes Artist-in-Association Inon Barnatan and Makoto Ozone performing Saint-Saëns's Carnival of the Animals, which features the world premiere of a new narration written by Laurence O'Keefe and Nell Benjamin and performed by Tony Award-winning actor Nathan Lane. Alan and the New York Philharmonic are also joined by mezzo-soprano Susan Graham — performing works including Edith Piaf's "La Vie en rose" and Offenbach arias — as well as Makoto Ozone for Ravel's Pavane pour une Infante défunte. Find tickets here. "La Vie Parisienne" will be telecast nationally on December 31 by PBS's Live From Lincoln Center, beginning on New York City's WNET at 8pm ET. Check your local listings for more information.
|9 DECEMBER 2015||A CONDUCTING DEBUT AND RECORDING WITH WITH ACADEMY OF ST. MARTIN IN THE FIELDS
Alan Gilbert makes his debut leading London's Academy of St. Martin in the Fields on December 13, in a program that features Inon Barnatan performing Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 3. Rounding out the evening are Brahms's Variations on a Theme of Joseph Haydn and Haydn's Symphony No. 90. Find tickets and more information here. Alan then records the complete Beethoven piano concertos with the same soloist and orchestra — marking the first time the ensemble has put the full cycle on disc — before continuing his collaboration with Inon Barnatan in New York, where the pianist serves as the New York Philharmonic's first Artist-in-Association.
During this European visit, Alan also returns to the Sinfonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks on December 10 and 11, leading accounts of Carl Nielsen's Symphony No. 3, "Sinfonia espansiva” with soloists Christina Landshamer and Michael Nagy, Christopher Rouse's Rapture, and Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 24 with Lars Vogt. Find tickets to the December 10 concert here and to the December 11 concert here.
|1 DECEMBER 2015||SINATRA: VOICE FOR A CENTURY WITH THE NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC AND SPECIAL GUESTS
Alan Gilbert leads the New York Philharmonic and a lineup of performers including Christina Aguilera, Chris Botti, Fantasia, Sutton Foster, Bernadette Peters, Sting, Billy Porter, and Kyle Dean Massey in Sinatra: Voice for a Century, a gala concert fundraiser for the new David Geffen Hall on Thursday, December 3. Seth MacFarlane hosts the event, which celebrates the music of Frank Sinatra on the occasion of the American musical icon's 100th birthday and follows David Geffen's $100 million gift to Lincoln Center to lead a complete renovation of the concert hall that now bears his name. Tickets and more information can be found here.
||12 NOVEMBER 2015||LEADING THE JUILLIARD ORCHESTRA AT CARNEGIE HALL ON NOVEMBER 24
Back in New York after his debut with the Staatskapelle Dresden and concerts with Hamburg's NDR Symphony, Alan Gilbert conducts the Juilliard Orchestra in their only Carnegie Hall appearance of the season on Tuesday, November 24. Schumann's Manfred Overture and Berg's Three Pieces for Orchestra are paired with A Ring Synthesis, Alan's own arrangement of selections from Wagner's "Ring" cycle, on the Perelman Stage. Alan holds the position of Director of Conducting and Orchestral Studies at Juilliard and is an alumnus of the school's college and pre-college programs. Find tickets and more information here.
||2 NOVEMBER 2015||ALL-MOZART AT THE NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC WITH SOLOIST PHILIP MYERS
Alan Gilbert leads the New York Philharmonic at David Geffen Hall in an all-Mozart program on four consecutive evenings, running Wednesday, November 4 through Saturday, November 7. The Austrian composer's Divertimento in D major, K.136/125a opens the program, followed by the Horn Concerto No. 2, with Principal Horn Philip Myers as soloist. The New York Philharmonic woodwinds then present the magisterial Serenade for 13 Winds, Gran partita. "I am glad to be able to present the Gran partita, which, although performed by a smaller ensemble, is so epic in its scope and so orchestral in its sound quality that it absolutely fills the hall," says Alan. "It truly is a standout masterpiece." Find tickets and more information here.
||22 OCTOBER 2015||ALAN GILBERT DEBUTS WITH STAATSKAPELLE DRESDEN AND LEADS NDR SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA HAMBURG
Following triumphant season-opening concerts with the New York Philharmonic at David Geffen Hall and Carnegie Hall, Alan Gilbert heads to Germany to make his debut with the Staatskapelle Dresden October 23 through 25, followed by concerts with the Hamburg's NDR Symphony October 29 through 31. With both orchestras, Gilbert joins Frank Peter Zimmermann for Shostakovich's Violin Concerto No. 2. In Hamburg, the concerto will be recorded for future album release, when it will be coupled with the Russian composer's First Violin Concerto. This work was also previously captured live in concert with Gilbert, Zimmermann and the NDR Symphony, prompting the Hamburger Abendblatt to praise the "momentum and enthusiasm, perfection and beauty of sound" the conductor inspired.
In his Staatskapelle Dresden debut, Alan also leads Kurtág's Grabstein für Stephan, Op. 15c and Tchaikovsky's Symphony No. 4. Find tickets and more information here. With Hamburg's NDR Symphony, where he has served as Principal Guest Conductor for more than a decade, the program also includes Beethoven's Symphony No. 3, "Eroica". Tickets are available here for the performances in Hamburg on October 29 and 30, and here for the October 31 concert in Bremen.
|15 OCTOBER 2015||CHOPIN WITH MAURIZIO POLLINI AND THE NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC
Alan Gilbert leads Maurizio Pollini and the New York Philharmonic in a one-night-only performance on Friday, October 16. The storied pianist's return to the New York Philharmonic after 21 years features Chopin's Piano Concerto No. 1, the work that launched his career — he played the work when he won the 1960 International Fryderyk Chopin Piano Competition — and the concerto he performed when he made his New York Philharmonic debut in 1969. "I've always felt that Maurizio Pollini is one of history's legends on the piano," said Music Director Alan Gilbert. "If I need a musical pick-up, I listen back-to-back to his recordings of Chopin's Études. It is an incredible honor to be able to perform with him. How great it is for the New York Philharmonic and for our audiences that he is coming here to play this iconic masterpiece." The evening's program also includes Berlioz's Le Corsaire Overture and Tchaikovsky's Romeo and Juliet, Overture-Fantasy. Find tickets and more information here.
||8 OCTOBER 2015||NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC ANN ARBOR RESIDENCY WITH SOLOIST INON BARNATAN
October 9 through 11 brings Alan Gilbert and the New York Philharmonic's first residency in Ann Arbor, launching an ambitious five-year partnership with the University of Michigan's University Musical Society that focuses on performances and educational opportunities.|
In the opening performance on Friday, October 9, Alan leads Magnus Lindberg's Vivo — which just received its premiere at Carnegie Hall's 125th anniversary Opening Night Gala — and Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 1 with Artist-in-Association Inon Barnatan as soloist. Beethoven's Symphony No. 7 rounds out the program. The second concert on Saturday, October 10 features Composer-in-Residence Esa-Pekka Salonen's LA Variations and Richard. Strauss's Ein Heldenleben. Learn more about these performances here. Alan delivers a keynote speech on Thursday as part of the residency, reprising his lecture "Orchestras in the 21st Century: A New Paradigm." Focusing on the changing roles of orchestras in the new millennium, this talk was originally delivered in April in London under the auspices of the Royal Philharmonic Society. On Friday, he leads a conducting seminar with University of Michigan students. Alan conducts the New York Philharmonic brass section alongside the Michigan Marching Band — a group of more than 1,000 musicians — at the halftime show of the University of Michigan's homecoming football game on Saturday, October 10.
More information can be found here.
|4 OCTOBER 2015||STREAMING LIVE ON MEDICI.TV: CARNEGIE HALL OPENING NIGHT GALA WITH NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC
Alan Gilbert leads the New York Philharmonic in Carnegie Hall's Opening Night Gala Concert on Wednesday, October 7, launching the celebrated hall's 125th anniversary season. The program features the world premiere of Magnus Lindberg's Vivo, a Carnegie Hall co-commission; Tchaikovsky's Piano Concerto No. 1, with Evgeny Kissin as soloist; and Ravel's Daphnis et Chloe Suite No. 2. The performance will be livestreamed by Medici.tv, where it will be available to watch for 90 days free of charge. Listeners can also tune in to a live broadcast by New York City's WQXR, available at 105.9 FM and wnyc.org. The coming season marks Gilbert's seventh as Music Director of the New York Philharmonic, where, as the New Yorker observes, he "has made an indelible mark on the orchestra's history and that of the city itself."
More information can be found here.
|21 SEPTEMBER 2015||ALAN GILBERT LAUNCHES SEVENTH SEASON AS MUSIC DIRECTOR OF NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC
Opening the New York Philharmonic's 2015-16 season in its newly named home, David Geffen Hall, Alan conducts the orchestra and soloist Lang Lang in a gala concert on Thursday, September 24. Grieg's Piano Concerto and Beethoven's Symphony No. 7 will be nationally telecast that night on PBS's Live From Lincoln Center at 9:00pm ET (check local listings) and broadcast live via WQXR and wqxr.org. Find more information about the gala concert here.
Then, in the season's first subscription program the following night on September 25, Alan launches the tenure of new Composer-in-Residence Esa-Pekka Salonen with the composer's LA Variations. Audiences will be introduced to newly appointed concertmaster Frank Huang playing the solos in Richard Strauss's Ein Heldenleben. A repeat performance of this program takes place on Saturday, September 26.
Says Alan of newly appointed Concertmaster Frank Huang, "Strauss's Ein Heldenleben is the best possible way to welcome Frank Huang as the new concertmaster of the New York Philharmonic. There is a subtlety to the art of being a great concertmaster. He or she must be a great instrumentalist — a soloist, a technical wizard — while also being a strong leader and a strong follower, a strong consensus builder, and, at times, a forceful presence. Happily, Frank Huang fits the description." Tickets and more information about these performances can be found here.
|5 SEPTEMBER 2015||ALAN GILBERT MAKES FILARMONICA DELLA SCALA DEBUT
Leading three performances at Milan's storied Teatro alla Scala opera house, Alan Gilbert makes his debut with the Filarmonica della Scala on September 15, followed by repeat performances on September 17 and 18. Beethoven's Symphony No. 6, "Pastoral" opens the program, followed by Bartok's harrowing one-act psychological thriller Bluebeard's Castle, sung in concert by John Relyea as Bluebeard and Ildikó Komlósi as Judith. These Italian performances begin a 2015-16 season that sees Alan also make guest conducting debuts with three other European ensembles – the Staatskapelle Dresden, London Symphony Orchestra, and Academy of St. Martin in the Fields. Tickets to the Filarmonica della Scala concerts and more information can be found here.
||20 AUGUST 2015||ALAN GILBERT SERVES AS SANTA FE CHAMBER MUSIC FESTIVAL ARTIST-IN-RESIDENCE
Following a successful run leading the American production debut of George Benjamin's opera Written on Skin in New York, Alan returns to the Santa Fe Chamber Music as this year's Artist-in-Residence.
After conducting Mozart's "Gran Partita" wind serenade on Saturday, August 22, he joins 43 musicians – the largest ensemble ever gathered at the festival for a single work – for a performance of Messiaen's otherworldly Des canyons aux étoiles ("From the Canyons to the Stars") the following night. Inspired by Utah's Bryce Canyon, the French composer's twelve-movement masterpiece draws on a characteristic mix of birdsong, modernist experimentalism, and religious mysticism.
Alan is a favorite guest at the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival; three years ago, when he helped celebrate its 40th anniversary, the Santa Fe Reporter noted: "For the near-capacity audience, it was love at first hearing. But the grinning, foot-stamping ovation his 16 musicians gave Gilbert? That was the tribute to remember." He has deep ties to the city of Santa Fe; like both his parents, he played in the Santa Fe Opera orchestra, where he served as assistant concertmaster, before becoming the company's first music director in 2003.
Find more information about Alan's Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival performances and buy tickets here.
|10 AUGUST 2015||ALAN GILBERT CONDUCTS US STAGE PREMIERE OF BENJAMIN'S WRITTEN ON SKIN AUG 11 - 15
Making his Mostly Mozart Festival debut, Alan Gilbert leads the Mahler Chamber Orchestra in the American production debut of George Benjamin's much-heralded 2012 opera Written on Skin. With a libretto by Martin Crimp and a striking score that showcases a diverse range of instruments — including a glass harmonica, pebbles, viola da gamba, tabla, and mandolins — Written on Skin tells a visceral tale of tale of submission, desire, and liberation. It is the first opera to be presented as part of a new artistic partnership between Lincoln Center and the New York Philharmonic with the aim of staging important new works not yet seen in New York.
Described by the New York Times as a "psychologically gripping, emotionally heart-pounding and viscerally satisfying drama," Written on Skin is inspired by a 13th-century story by Occitan poet Guillem de Cabestany about a rich and powerful landowner in the Provence region of France who commissions a young artist to write a book about his riches and status. The landowner, referred to as "The Protector" in the piece and portrayed by Christopher Purves, invites The Boy (Tim Mead) to stay with him and his wife, Agnès (Barbara Hannigan), so that he might further celebrate his property and legacy. Agnès becomes drawn to the boy, and an affair ensues, with shocking consequences for all parties. The opera features a cast of five, including three Angels who double as the Boy, Agnès's sister Marie (Victoria Simmonds), and Marie's husband John (Robert Murray). The Angels themselves serve to frame the story as a sort of cautionary tale. Crimp also uses a self-narrating device with all of the characters to remind the audience that both the present and the past exist in the piece. This production, directed by Katie Mitchell, further explores the connection between the three main characters and the Angels as interplay between our world and days gone by.
More information about Written on Skin, which will be presented on August 11, 13, and 15 at Lincoln Center's David H. Koch Theater, can be found from Mostly Mozart and the New York Times.
|26 JULY 2015||ALAN GILBERT LEADS NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC AT 13TH ANNUAL BRAVO! VAIL SUMMER RESIDENCY
Returning to Bravo! Vail in Colorado with the New York Philharmonic for the orchestra's 13th annual summer residency, Alan conducts three concerts at the festival's outdoor Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater, including an all-American program and works by Mendelssohn, Mahler, Mozart, and Shostakovich.
Wednesday, July 29 features Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto, with Midori as soloist, followed by Mahler's Symphony No. 5. The next evening's program on Thursday, July 30 includes Barber's The School for Scandal Overture; Copland's Appalachian Spring Suite; Leroy Anderson's Fiddle-Faddle; Rodgers's The Carousel Waltz; Bernstein's West Side Story Concert Suite No. 1, performed by soprano Julia Bullock and tenor Ben Bliss; Gershwin's Lullaby; and Sousa's The Washington Post. The New York Philharmonic's residency culminates with a final concert on Friday, July 31 of Mozart's Sinfonia concertante for Violin and Viola, with Acting Concertmaster Sheryl Staples and Principal Viola Cynthia Phelps as soloists, and Shostakovich's Symphony No. 10.
More information about Alan's summer performances at Vail can be found here.
|17 JULY 2015||ALAN GILBERT NOMINATED FOR 2015 EMMY AWARD IN OUTSTANDING MUSIC DIRECTION
Alan Gilbert has been nominated for the 2015 Emmy Award in Outstanding Music Direction for his role as as Conductor and Music Director of Stephen Sondheim's grisly thriller Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber Of Fleet Street, broadcast nationwide by PBS's Live From Lincoln Center on September 26, 2014. The Academy Award-winning actress Emma Thompson has also received a nomination for her performance as the vengeful baker Mrs. Lovett in the category of Outstanding Lead Actress In A Limited Series Or A Movie. The production has also been nominated for the Outstanding Special Class Program award.
The New York Philharmonic's production of the Tony and Drama Desk Award-winning musical was met with a chorus of critical praise. Said New York Magazine, "Alan Gilbert has already shown that the Philharmonic can be the best opera company in town; now he's put Broadway on notice, too." Bryn Terfel starred as the title character alongside Emma Thompson, telling the story of the eponymous barber who seeks vengeance on what he sees as a merciless world by murdering his customers and, with the help of his landlady, bakes their bodies into meat pies, which are fed to London's avid and unknowing populace.
The 67th Emmy Awards will take place on Sunday, September 20 at 8pm ET and 5pm PT, airing live on in the US on FOX. More info is available here.
|3 JULY 2015||ALAN GILBERT LEADS NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC IN FIRST OF FOUR ANNUAL SHANGHAI PERFORMANCE RESIDENCIES
Alan Gilbert travels to Shanghai in July to kick off the four-year Shanghai Orchestra Academy and Residency Partnership, a joint endeavor of the New York Philharmonic and Shanghai Symphony Orchestra that was launched in 2014. In the first of four performances, he conducts an all-American program featuring works by Barber, Copland, Bernstein, Gershwin, and Sousa including Bernstein's West Side Story Suite for violin and orchestra, with Joshua Bell as soloist on July 4 at Shanghai Symphony Hall followed by a repeat of the program July 6 at the Shanghai Poly Grand Theatre. Two more concerts at Shanghai Symphony Hall follow: a Young People's Concert on July 9, titled Journey to New York and celebrating music composed in and about New York; and a performance featuring Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 14 with soloist Emanuel Ax and Mahler's Symphony No. 5 on July 10.
The Shanghai Orchestra Academy and Residency Partnership is a program of the New York Philharmonic's Global Academy, a series of customized collaborations with partners worldwide that offer intensive training of pre-professional musicians by members of the New York Philharmonic. More information about this summer's Shanghai residency during which New York Philharmonic musicians also take part in educational activities including masterclasses, lessons, and coachings can be found here.
|17 JUNE 2015||ALAN GILBERT CELEBRATES 50TH ANNIVERSARY OF NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC'S CONCERTS IN THE PARKS WITH FREE CONCERTS IN THREE BOROUGHS
Kicking off the 50th anniversary of the New York Philharmonic's Concerts in the Parks, the annual series of free outdoor performances that has been enjoyed by more than 14 million concertgoers since it was introduced in 1965, Alan leads a free concert tonight at the Great Lawn in Manhattan's Central Park with soloist Joshua Bell. The all-American program features the violinist performing the suite from Bernstein's West Side Story, plus performances by the orchestra of Barber's The School for Scandal Overture, Gershwin's Lullaby, Copland's Appalachian Spring, Leroy Anderson's Fiddle-Faddle, Rodgers's The Carousel Waltz, and Sousa's The Washington Post.
Repeat concerts take place at Cunningham Park in Queens on June 22 and at the Bronx's Van Cortlandt Park on June 23, at which the Bernstein work will be replaced by his West Side Story Concert Suite No. 1 with soprano Julia Bullock and tenor Ben Bliss as soloists. All three concerts will be followed by a fireworks show by Bay Fireworks. Charles Dutoit leads two more concerts as part of the Concerts in the Parks series, first at Central Park's Great Lawn on June 18 and then at Brooklyn's Prospect Park on June 19, both performances boasting a Franco-Russian program.
More information about this year's 50th anniversary season of Concerts in the Parks can be found here. Crowdsourcing Memories: 50 Years of the Philharmonic in New York City's Parks, an online portal through which the public can share their personal Concerts in the Parks memories, can be visited at nyphil.org/parks50memory.
|2 JUNE 2015||ALAN GILBERT AND THE NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC RELEASE FINAL NIELSEN PROJECT RECORDING AND BOX SET IN CELEBRATION OF COMPOSER'S 150TH BIRTHDAY
The final recording and complete four-CD box set of the Nielsen Project, Alan and the New York Philharmonic's acclaimed multi-season survey of the six symphonies and three concertos by Danish composer Carl Nielsen, is being released worldwide on June 9 in celebration of the composer's 150th birthday. The new recording features live recordings of the composer's three concertos, with Principal Flutist Robert Langevin, Principal Clarinetist Anthony McGill, and violinist Nikolaj Znaider as soloists. "Sensational music, superbly played, and a fitting conclusion to an impressive new Nielsen cycle," exclaimed the Arts Desk.
Released on the Dacapo and distributed by Naxos, the box set also includes a recording of Nielsen's Symphony No. 2, The Four Temperaments, and Symphony No. 3, Sinfonia espansiva, which was selected by the New York Times as one of the Best Classical Music Recordings of 2012; 2014's release of Symphonies No. 1 and No. 4, The Inextinguishable; and early 2015's Symphony No. 5 and Symphony No. 6, Sinfonia semplice. A devotee of the Danish composer, Alan Gilbert launched the Nielsen Project in the 2010–11 season. More information is available at nyphil.org/nielsen.
Alan will be interviewed from the stage by WWFM's David Osenberg at a launch party on June 15 celebrating the new releases at New York's SubCulture. Co-presented by the New York Philharmonic, Dacapo Records, and the Consulate General of Denmark, the event will also include performances by Robert Langevin and Anthony McGill, additional New York Philharmonic musicians, the Nightingale String Quartet, and DJ Katrine Ring. Tickets and more information about the celebration can be found here.
|1 JUNE 2015||ALAN GILBERT CONDUCTS NEW STAGING OF HONEGGER'S JOAN OF ARC AT THE STAKE STARRING MARION COTILLARD
To close out the New York Philharmonic's 2014-15 season, Alan Gilbert takes the podium for the U.S. premiere of Côme de Bellescize's staged treatment of Honegger's Joan of Arc at the Stake. A depiction of the French martyr's final moments, the dramatic oratorio is, Gilbert believes, "probably Honegger's greatest work." In the hands of award-winning French director de Bellescize, it places Joan on a platform at the heart of the orchestra, where she recalls her life through a series of flashbacks. French movie icon Marion Cotillard, who considers the role "one of my greatest experiences as an actress," was pronounced "captivating" (Public magazine, France) as Joan when she toured France with the production, following its debut at Seiji Ozawa's Saito Kinen festival in 2012. Cotillard heads a strong cast that also features members of the Comédie-Francaise. Performances run June 10-13. Find tickets and more information here.
||24 MAY 2015||ALAN GILBERT LEADS NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC'S ANNUAL FREE MEMORIAL DAY CONCERT AT THE CATHEDRAL CHURCH OF SAINT JOHN THE DIVINE
On Monday, May 25, Alan Gilbert leads the New York Philharmonic in the orchestra's 24th Annual Free Memorial Day Concert at the Cathedral Church of Saint John the Divine, a tradition was begun in 1992 as a gift to the people of New York City. This year's program includes Beethoven's Egmont Overture as well as Shostakovich's tragic and powerful Symphony No. 10, of which Alan and the orchestra gave a "wrenching, blazing and vehement account" (New York Times) last month at Avery Fisher Hall and toured during EUROPE / SPRING 2015. Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis; tickets will be handed out at 6pm on the day of the performance at the Cathedral Church of Saint John the Divine. The concert, which will be presented without an intermission, begins at 8pm. Audio of the performance will be broadcast onto the adjacent Pulpit Green, weather permitting. Find more information here.
||22 MAY 2015||ALAN GILBERT RECEIVES FOREIGN POLICY ASSOCIATION MEDAL FOR "EXTRAORDINARY COMMITMENT TO CULTURAL DIPLOMACY"
Alan Gilbert has been presented with the Foreign Policy Association Medal, an honor recognizing individuals who demonstrate responsible internationalism and who are working to expand public knowledge of international affairs. At the Foreign Policy Association's Annual Awards Dinner at the Pierre Hotel on May 21, Alan was honored alongside two other distinguished honorees, Columbia University President Lee C. Bollinger and Louis Bacon, who serves as Moore Capital Management Founder, Chairman and CEO as well as LP and President of the Moore Charitable Foundation, Inc.
As the principal public forum in New York City for foreign policy addresses, the Foreign Policy Association's annual meetings program and World Leadership Forum gives members access to discussion and debate on critical issues facing America today. With support from The Moore Charitable Foundation, the FPA has also convened a Task Force on Climate Change to make recommendations for a North American strategy to abate global warming and make climate change a priority for U.S. foreign policy. Past recipients of the Foreign Policy Association Medal include the former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, former US Secretary of the Treasury and Federal Reserve Bank of New York Chairman Timothy Geithner, and former Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd.
|19 MAY 2015||ALAN GILBERT CONDUCTS JUILLIARD ORCHESTRA'S ANNUAL COMMENCEMENT CONCERT
In his only appearance with the Juilliard Orchestra this season, Alan Gilbert leads the ensemble's annual commencement concert featuring the Juilliard School's graduating class of instrumentalists at Alice Tully Hall on Thursday, May 21. The program include Richard Strauss's Don Juan and Beethoven's Symphony No. 7 in A Major. Alan will also be the speaker at the Juilliard School's Pre-College Commencement Ceremony, which will be held on Saturday, May 23 in Juilliard's Peter Jay Sharp Theater. He holds the position of Director of Conducting and Orchestral Studies at Juilliard and is an alumnus of the school's college and pre-college programs.
Tickets to the Juilliard Orchestra's Commencement Concert are available only for Juilliard students, faculty and staff. Find more information here.
|15 MAY 2015||READ THE TRANSCRIPT OF ALAN GILBERT'S ROYAL PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY LECTURE
||Alan Gilbert's lecture "Orchestras in the 21st Century; a new paradigm", which was delivered on April 15 in London under the auspices of the Royal Philharmonic Society's annual lecture series, is available to read online and may be downloaded here.
According to the New York Times, the presentation "touched on the changing roles being embraced by some orchestras as they adapt to new challenges, the importance of forging connections with audiences and communities and how to keep expanding the repertoire with new music without alienating audiences." Alan illuminates his points with descriptions of ways in which the New York Philharmonic has evolved under his leadership and mentions other innovative ensembles including the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Louisville Orchestra, and Manchester Camerata.
"The growing-pains of this seismic shift have led to there being two competing choruses: the chorus of 'Things must change' and the chorus of 'Things must stay the same,' " Alan says. "It's a little bit like the Matthew Passion gone wrong. However it's also a bit of an artificial conflict, since clearly things must adapt while we at the same time fight to preserve much of what has characterized orchestras for centuries."
An edited version of the lecture is also available from the Guardian.
|5 MAY 2015||ALAN GILBERT AND THE NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC REVISIT REPERTOIRE FROM EUROPEAN TOUR IN NEW YORK
||Following their recent return from a seven-city tour across Western Europe in late April, including a residency at London's Barbican Centre and the first performances by a US orchestra at the newly opened Philharmonie de Paris, Alan Gilbert and the New York Philharmonic reprise two programs from their trip at Avery Fisher Hall.
On May 6, Alan leads a trio of master works, all of which date from 1911: Ravel's Valses nobles et sentimentales, Richard Strauss's Der Rosenkavalier Suite, and the original version of Stravinsky's Petruskha. Of their performance of these works at the Barbican Centre, "an adrenaline boost for musical life in London," the UK's Arts Desk observed that "the orchestral playing here was excellent, Ravel's full spectrum of tone colours projected in dazzling clarity. ... joie de vivre of each ensuing waltz [in the Rosenkavalier Suite], it was hard not to feel that Gilbert and his New York players had fully captured the spirit of the opera."
The first American performances of Peter Eötvös's Senza sangue on May 8 and 9 follow on the heels of its world premiere in Cologne. Both premieres feature Grammy Award-winning mezzo Anne Sofie von Otter and baritone Russell Braun. Juxtaposed with Schubert's "Unfinished" Symphony in the upcoming concerts, the Hungarian composer's new opera is the latest in a string of important new works that Gilbert and the Philharmonic have commissioned, premiered, and championed.
|23 APRIL 2015||APRIL 25 PHILHARMONIE DE PARIS CONCERT WITH NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC AND JOYCE DIDONATO WEBCAST LIVE ON MEDICI.TV
||Medici.tv will present a free webcast of a Alan's April 25 concert with the New York Philharmonic and mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato live from the Philharmonie de Paris. The performance, one of twelve as part of the New York Philharmonic's EUROPE / SPRING 2015 tour, will include Esa-Pekka Salonen's Nyx, Ravel's Shéhérazade (with DiDonato as soloist) and Valses nobles et sentimentales, plus Richard Strauss's Suite from Der Rosenkavalier. Starting at 2:30pm EDT, this will be the first appearance by an American orchestra at the acclaimed new Parisian venue, now in its inaugural season. Medici.tv's webcast will be available free to audiences worldwide for 90 days after the initial live showing. Find more information here.
||15 APRIL 2015||ALAN GILBERT AND NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC EMBARK ON EUROPE / SPRING 2015 TOUR
||Alan Gilbert takes the New York Philharmonic on their eighth international tour together this month when they embark on EUROPE / SPRING 2015. From April 15 through May 1, they make visits to Dublin, London, Amsterdam, Luxembourg, Paris, Frankfurt, and Cologne, juxtaposing canonical masterworks with a theatrical collaboration, the world premiere of a new commission, and other examples of key initiatives introduced during Alan's tenure.
Alan kicks off the tour on April 15 with the annual Royal Philharmonic Society Lecture, speaking on "Orchestras in the 21st Century; a new paradigm" at London's Guildhall School of Music & Drama. Along with the New York Philharmonic, he presents Giants Are Small's theatrical reimagining of Stravinsky's Petrushka during a residency at London's Barbican Centre under the auspices of its International Associates initiative. Other tour highlights include the orchestra's first visit to Dublin in 19 years; accounts of Ravel's Shéhérazade with Joyce DiDonato and of Esa-Pekka Salonen's Nyx; the world premiere of Peter Eötvös's one-act opera, Senza sangue, starring Anne Sofie von Otter and Russell Braun; performances at the newly opened Philharmonie de Paris, which will be webcast live by Medici.tv; and Alan hosting a concert of highlights from the Philharmonic's recent concerts as part of CONTACT!, the new-music series.
Says Alan, "I am thrilled to be going back to Europe with the New York Philharmonic, playing music that the orchestra can perform with such flair and brilliance. There are a number of highlights that I'm looking forward to. Bringing Doug Fitch's Petrushka project to London is definitely one of them, and so is playing French music in Paris, where we will perform Ravel's Shéhérazade with Joyce DiDonato and Debussy's Jeux. I love that we're going back to Luxembourg and Frankfurt. Cologne will be special, as we will be presenting the world premiere of Peter Eötvös's Senza Sangue. It's not common for an orchestra to play a piece for the first time on tour, and mezzo Anne Sofie von Otter and baritone Russell Braun will be joining us for the debut of this one-act opera in the marvelous Kölner Philharmonie."
Follow the tour and find more information here.
|30 MARCH 2015||ALAN GILBERT LEADS LISA BATIASHVILI AND FRANCOIS LELEUX IN U.S. PREMIERE BY THIERRY ESCAICH
||For her final performances with Alan Gilbert and the New York Philharmonic as the orchestra's Artist-in-Residence, Lisa Batiashvili reunites with her husband and longtime musical partner, oboist Francois Leleux, in a pairing that has been dubbed "a star act" (The Times of London). Alan leads the duo Wednesday, April 8 through Saturday, April 11 in the U.S. premiere of Thierry Escaich's Concerto for Violin and Oboe, a Philharmonic co-commission with Hamburg's NDR Symphony Orchestra. When Alan presented the world premiere with these soloists and orchestra in December, the Hamburger Abendblatt wrote: "This artfully constructed piece effused an energy seemingly fed in equal measure by Stravinsky's Rite of Spring and Arvo Pärt's sacrosanct simplicity: rhythmically extremely demanding and detailed, yet also breathing deeply and with great clarity of spirit. The husband and wife soloist team of Lisa Batiashvili and Francois Leleux, for whom the work was composed, gave a performance demonstrating the ability characteristic of virtuosos in their league, with their playing of the fast-paced, complicated music still allowing space for thought and feeling."
Shedding light on his creative process, Escaich explains: "Throughout my career, I have often found myself reworking certain forms of the past in order to make them express something new. I wanted to use J.S. Bach's thematic material for this double concerto, shaping it until it entered my own sound world. I was thinking of the warmth and breadth of Francois's sound while writing, and, too, of the spirit and energy of Lisa's violin, which guides the persistent rhythm running throughout the piece."
Escaich's concerto shares the program with Bach's Double Concerto for Violin and Oboe, the Baroque masterpiece that inspired Escaich's work, and with Shostakovich's Tenth Symphony. Tickets and more information can be found here.
|24 MARCH 2015||ALAN GILBERT CONDUCTS JOHN ADAMS WORLD PREMIERE WITH LEILA JOSEFOWICZ AS SOLOIST
||Alan Gilbert leads the New York Philharmonic in the world premiere of John Adams's Scheherazade.2 — Dramatic symphony for violin and orchestra with soloist Leila Josefowicz, for whom it is written and dedicated. Scheherazade.2 is the first work Mr. Adams has composed expressly for Josefowicz, a champion of contemporary repertoire who is closely affiliated with John Adams, having already performed his Grawemeyer Award–winning Violin Concerto and his electric violin piece The Dharma at Big Sur. Performances take place on Thursday, March 26, Friday, March 27, and Saturday, March 28, and also include two early 20th-century Russian works: Stravinsky's Petrushka (original 1911 version) and Lyadov's The Enchanted Lake.
"John Adams is today's Dean of American Composers — many of his works are rightfully acknowledged as landmarks in the last half-century of music," Alan Gilbert says. "John's style has evolved, but he has always been rooted in an incredibly idiomatic use of the orchestra. This piece reflects John's characteristic combination of highly developed craft with a uniquely gripping narrative style of composition. The very title of this work implies storytelling, a quality that I know that Leila will vividly bring to life."
|10 MARCH 2015||ALAN GILBERT LEADS NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC ARTIST-IN-ASSOCIATION INON BARNATAN IN PIANIST'S PHILHARMONIC DEBUT
||Alan Gilbert conducts the New York Philharmonic in Ravel's Piano Concerto in G major, featuring Artist-in-Association Inon Barnatan in his Philharmonic debut, on Thursday, March 19, Friday, March 20, and Tuesday, March 24 at Avery Fisher Hall, plus a performance on Saturday, March 21 at Long Island University's Tilles Center for the Performing Arts. The program also includes Nyx by Esa-Pekka Salonen, who will begin a three-year tenure as the Philharmonic's Composer-in-Residence next season, as well as Debussy's Jeux and Richard Strauss's Der Rosenkavalier Suite.
"I'm honored that Inon Barnatan is part of our family as the Philharmonic's first Artist-in-Association," Alan said. "He is the perfect person to start this new long-term relationship with: we believe in him that much. He's a complete artist, wonderful pianist, a probing intellect, and plays an enormous range of music." The position of Artist-in-Association was created to highlight an emerging artist over the course of several consecutive seasons through concerto and chamber music appearances, building a relationship between the artist, the Philharmonic, and its audiences.
Tickets can be found here for Avery Fisher Hall performances and here for the Tilles Center performance.
|3 MARCH 2015||ALAN GILBERT CONDUCTS NEW MUSIC FROM NORDIC COUNTRIES FOR NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC'S CONTACT! SERIES
||Alan Gilbert conducts the New York Premiere of Per Nørgård's Cello Concerto No. 2, Momentum, with New York Philharmonic cellist Eric Bartlett as soloist, and Kalevi Aho's Chamber Symphony No. 2 on Saturday, March 7 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The program, entitled "New Music from Nordic Countries", takes place as part of the sixth season of the New York Philharmonic's new-music series CONTACT!. Alan shares a program with Assistant Conductor Courtney Lewis, who will conduct the U.S. premiere of the string orchestra version of Kaija Saariaho's Terra Memoria and the U.S. premiere of Đuro Živković's The White Angel. Find tickets and more information here.
||24 FEBRUARY 2015||LA DOLCE VITA: THE MUSIC OF ITALIAN CINEMA TO BE BROADCAST ON PBS'S GREAT PERFORMANCES
||Alan Gilbert and the New York Philharmonic's presentation of La Dolce Vita: The Music of Italian Cinema will be telecast nationally on PBS's Great Performances on Friday, February 27 at 9pm EST. The sold-out concert features violinist Joshua Bell, soprano Renée Fleming, and singer/songwriter/actor Josh Groban in suites and famous songs by Italian composers including Nino Rota, Ennio Morricone, Luis Bacalov, and others from films including 8 1/2, La Dolce Vita, Once Upon a Time in the West, and more. Video projections combining animated graphics and film clips designed by visual artist Giuseppe Ragazzini accompany the performance. Check your local listings for more information. A preview of the broadcast can be seen here.
||6 FEBRUARY 2015||A NOTE FROM ALAN GILBERT ON HIS DECISION TO STEP DOWN AS NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC MUSIC DIRECTOR IN 2017
||I wanted to share with you myself the news that after eight years as Music Director of the New York Philharmonic, I will step down from the position in 2017. This is a big step for me to take, and an important decision, but I feel strongly that I will be leaving the position at exactly the right time. As I said in a statement that you can read in the news release now posted on the New York Philharmonic website, "Making music with the New York Philharmonic is a great joy for me, and I am very proud of the musical journey we are taking together." You can read my full statement, and the entire news release, here.
||27 JANUARY 2015||ALAN GILBERT RETURNS TO METROPOLITAN OPERA FOR DON GIOVANNI
||Next month, Alan Gilbert crosses the plaza at Lincoln Center to take the podium at the Metropolitan Opera, where he leads all ten performances of Mozart's Don Giovanni, running February 4 through March 6. Michael Grandage's take on this retelling of the Don Juan tale stars Grammy Award-winning baritone Peter Mattei in a reprise of his "superb" account of the title role (New York Times), with sopranos Elza van den Heever and Emma Bell as Donna Anna and Donna Elvira; mezzo Kate Lindsey as Zerlina; veteran bass-baritone James Morris as the Commendatore; and bass-baritone Luca Pisaroni, always "a dynamic Leporello" (New York Times), in his signature role as Don Giovanni's beleaguered servant.
It has been six years since Alan triumphed in his Met debut with John Adams's Doctor Atomic, which was named one of the "Top Ten Classical Events of 2008" by New York Magazine and won the 2012 Grammy Award for Best Opera Recording after its DVD/Blu-ray release. Performances of Don Giovanni take place on February 4, 7, 11, 14, 17, 21, 24, and 27, plus March 2 and 6. Find tickets and more information here.
|13 JANUARY 2015||ALAN GILBERT LEADS FIRST VERDI REQUIEM WITH THE NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC, FEATURING DREAM TEAM OF SOLOISTS
||Following previous, highly successful collaborations on such masterworks as Bach's Mass in B minor, Mozart's Great Mass in C Minor, Beethoven's Missa Solemnis, Mendelssohn's Elijah and Mahler's "Resurrection" Symphony, Alan and the New York Philharmonic now turn to another cornerstone of the choral repertory, tackling Verdi's Requiem together for the first time. Alan says of the work, "Verdi's Requiem is a unique treatment of a very serious text: it is not hyper-reverent, but it is extremely vivid, even terrifying, larger-than-life, and gets into the excitement of worship, fear, and the uncertainty of faith."
To do the job, Alan has assembled a quartet of soloists that he describes as "absolutely spectacular." He continues, "Angela Meade is the up-and-coming Verdi soprano now; Lilli Paasikivi is a dark-hued, wonderfully rich mezzo-soprano; Russell Thomas is currently artist-in-residence with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra; and Eric Owens is definitive." In the performances of Verdi's Requiem, the orchestra and four soloists enjoy the support of the New York Choral Artists under the direction of Joseph Flummerfelt. Tickets to the performances, which take place Thursday, January 15, through Saturday, January 17, are available here.
|6 JANUARY 2015||ALAN GILBERT LEADS CONCLUSION OF THE NIELSEN PROJECT AT THE NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC
||The Nielsen Project, Alan's complete cycle of the Danish composer's symphonies and concertos with the New York Philharmonic, in live performance and on disc – has been recognized as "one of the great successes of Alan Gilbert's tenure thus far" by the New York Times. Marking the 150th anniversary of Nielsen's birth, the New Year sees this ambitious multi-season initiative draw to a close, with performances of the Clarinet Concerto showcasing new Philharmonic principal clarinetist Anthony McGill in his solo debut with the orchestra on January 8, 9, 10, and 13. The program will also include Ravel's Valses nobles et sentimentales and selections from Tchaikovsky's Swan Lake. Find tickets and more information here. The composer's sesquicentennial will be honored with the Philharmonic's first complete recording of his symphonies and concertos, to be released as a four-CD boxed set on June 9, 2015, the 150th anniversary of the day he was born. Issued on Denmark's Dacapo label for distribution by Naxos, the set will comprise Nielsen's six symphonies, three concertos, and two overtures, all captured live in concert. The four discs will also be available singly.
||26 DECEMBER 2014||NIELSEN ALBUM FEATURED IN CRITICS' BEST OF 2014 ROUNDUPS
||Alan Gilbert and the New York Philharmonic's recent release of Carl Nielsen's Symphonies Nos. 1 & 4 ("The Inextinguishable,") has been making the rounds of critics' classical year-end roundups, including the New York Times, which praised Alan's "inspired" leadership and the orchestra's "gripping, insightful accounts of the First and Fourth Symphonies." NPR Music declared, "conductor Alan Gilbert and the New York Philharmonic have been making a case for Nielsen," naming the album as among their top picks for 2014. Andrew Clements of the Guardian included the recording among his top ten selections of the year.
The album can be purchased on on Amazon and iTunes. Upon its completion, the Nielsen Project will comprise four recordings, released by Dacapo and distributed by Naxos, to be released in a boxed set coinciding with the 150th anniversary of the composer's birth, June 9, 2015.
||4 DECEMBER 2014||BBC MUSIC MAGAZINE NAMES NIELSEN RECORDING "ORCHESTRAL CHOICE" OF THE MONTH
||Alan Gilbert and the New York Philharmonic's October release of Carl Nielsen's Symphonies No. 1 and No. 4, "The Inextinguishable," has just been named BBC Music Magazine's "Orchestral Choice" this month, boasting a five-star performance rating. In his review, Anthony Burton observes, "Alan Gilbert succeeds in suggesting the force underlying the Fourth Symphony. ... The live recording in Avery Fisher Hall builds up a powerful sound-picture. ... Gilbert interprets it [the First Symphony] flexibly and sympathetically, and is again rewarded by wholehearted playing." The recording, which is the most recent product of the Nielsen Project, Alan and the New York Philharmonic's multi-season performance and recording survey of the six symphonies and three concertos by the Danish composer, is available in the US on the Dacapo label and distributed by Naxos. Buy it on Amazon.com or iTunes, or stream it on Spotify. In 2015 the collected Nielsen Project recordings will be released as a complete set in commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the composer's birth.
||25 NOVEMBER 2014||ALAN GILBERT CONDUCTS THIERRY ESCAICH WORLD PREMIERE IN HAMBURG
||With the NDR Symphony Orchestra, Hamburg in the orchestra's home (on December 4 and 7), and in Lübeck (on December 5), Alan Gilbert presents the world premiere of Thierry Escaich's Concerto for Violin, Oboe and Orchestra, featuring violinist and New York Philharmonic Artist-in-Residence Lisa Batiashvili and oboist Francois Leleux. Rounding out the program at all three concerts are Thomas Adès's Three Studies from Couperin and Hector Berlioz's Symphonie fantastique.
Escaich's concerto is a co-commission by the NDR and the New York Philharmonic, and will receive its US premiere in April at Avery Fisher Hall. Watch Lisa Batiashvili share her thoughts on the work in a video here.
|19 NOVEMBER 2014||ALAN GILBERT RETURNS TO BERLIN PHILHARMONIC
||Alan Gilbert leads a program of music inspired by landscapes and folklore when he returns to conduct the Berlin Philharmonic in mid-November, continuing his impassioned advocacy of the music of Carl Nielsen. The program features the Danish composer's atmospherically dense Symphony No. 3, "Sinfonia expansiva", inspired by reflections after a trip and featuring soloists Christina Landshamer, soprano and Michael Nagy, baritone. Opening the concerts, which take place Friday, November 21 through Sunday, November 23, is J.S. Bach's Cantata "Ach Gott, wie manches Herzeleid", BWV 58 with Landshamer and Nagy as soloists. Mendelssohn's "Scottish" Symphony, inspired by the composer's travels around the Scottish countryside in 1829, follows. Find tickets and more information here.
Alan and the New York Philharmonic's recording of Nielsen's Symphony No. 3 was recently released on Dacapo as part of the Nielsen Project, and was named one of the best recordings of 2012 by the New York Times. In 2015, Alan and the Philharmonic complete this multi-year endeavor with the release of the composer's six symphonies and three concertos on Dacapo with distribution by Naxos in celebration of the 150th anniversary of the composer's birth.
|3 NOVEMBER 2014||ALAN GILBERT BEGINS TRIP TO GERMANY WITH MUNICH PHILHARMONIC PERFORMANCES
||After launching the season with the storied Gewandhaus Orchestra, leading concerts both at the orchestra's Leipzig home and on a tour of major European music capitals and festivals, Alan Gilbert returns to Germany from November through early December to conduct three more great orchestras with which he has developed particularly close relationships: the Munich Philharmonic, Berlin Philharmonic, and NDR Symphony Orchestra, Hamburg.
Alan made his debut with the Munich Philharmonic in 2011, impressing the Süddeutsche Zeitung with his "spirit, joy in making music, communication, [and] energy." His three-night engagement with this ensemble on November 10, 12, and 13 features Beethoven's Symphony No. 1 in C Major and Debussy's evocative Images, as well as Respighi's Fountains of Rome at the first two performances. Find more information and tickets to the November 10 and 12 concerts here and the November 13 concert here.
|22 OCTOBER 2014||THIS WEEK AT THE PHILHARMONIC: BARTOK'S 3RD PIANO CONCERTO WITH YEFIM BRONFMAN AND BRUCKNER 8
||Alan Gilbert joins former New York Philharmonic Artist-In-Residence Yefim Bronfman for Bartók's Piano Concerto No. 3 as well as Bruckner's Symphony No. 8 with the orchestra Thursday, October 23 through Saturday, October 25 and Tuesday, October 28.
Of his performance of Bruckner's Symphony No. 3 at the New York Philharmonic's free Memorial Day Concert at The Cathedral Church of Saint John the Divine earlier this year, the New York Times wrote: "Mr. Gilbert's love for Bruckner is unmistakable, and this performance contained glories," and "Mr. Gilbert, who has a special affinity for Bruckner, was sensitive to the shifts of character and sound, as well as the blend of gravity and innocence in the music."
Says Alan of the program, "Bruckner is known for creating great washes of sound, which Bartók also can do, masterfully, but with an astringent bite that creates a nice contrast with Bruckner's Romanticism. And the fact that both composed music that is so related to their respective national traditions seemed to me to make them a natural pairing. In Bruckner's music you can escape today's frenetic world. To truly appreciate his timeless landscapes of sound, it's best to slow down your own personal clock. Even if he takes five minutes when another composer might take three, it is in a very specific point in the piece's overall architecture, and the symphony is absolutely in motion at all times and incredibly heartfelt."
"As much as Fima and I have performed together, both here and around the world, we've never collaborated on Bartók, and we both decided we wanted to do so now," continues Alan. "Fima's technique and musical personality really can encompass all types of music. This range and combination makes him the perfect partner for both the powerful, percussive aspects and the more lyrical and refined sensibilities in Bartók's music." Bronfman won a Grammy Award for his 1997 recording of Bartók's Piano Concertos Nos. 1–3.
Find tickets and more information here.
|20 OCTOBER 2014||ALAN GILBERT LEADS THE NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC AND LANG LANG IN ONE NIGHT ONLY ALL-MOZART PROGRAM OCTOBER 21
||With star pianist Lang Lang as soloist, Alan Gilbert conducts the New York Philharmonic in an all-Mozart program on Tuesday, October 21 featuring the Piano Concertos 17 and 24 and the overture to The Magic Flute.
Says Alan of the performance, "Lang Lang brings a completely personal quality to everything he performs. Mozart's music is uniquely challenging to the performer — it has to be stylish and shaped, but ultimately human — but there's nothing more fun or gratifying. You have to tell the story of the music. The story of Mozart is everybody's story, and it's an important one."
In its review of Lang Lang's performances of Mozart sonatas at Royal Albert Hall in 2013, the Guardian wrote: "His dexterity saw him sail nonchalantly through Mozart's bravura passages, in which there is no hiding from even the most minor mishaps; but he also showed exhilarating flair and brilliance, every gesture set clearly into the broader flow of each movement."
Find tickets and more information here.
|15 OCTOBER 2014||ALAN GILBERT RETURNS TO PHILADELPHIA ORCHESTRA FOR JANÁCEK'S GLAGOLITIC MASS
||Alan Gilbert leads the Philadelphia Orchestra October 16 to 18 in Leoš Janáček's rarely heard Glagolitic Mass, the Czech composer's masterpiece for soloists, double choir, organ, and orchestra. The massive 1926 work, which is also known as the "Slavic Mass," features soloists Tatiana Monogarova, Kelley O'Connor, Anthony Dean Griffey, and John Relyea alongside the Philadelphia Singers Chorale. The program opens with the first Philadelphia Orchestra's first ever performances of Sibelius's tone poem Night Ride and Sunrise and Dvorak's Golden Spinning Wheel, a symphonic poem based on a Czech fairy tale. More information about the performances, which are part of the Philadelphia Orchestra's multi-week Art of the Pipe Organ Celebration, is available here.
||9 OCTOBER 2014||ALAN GILBERT LEADS ROUSE PREMIERE AND NEW ARTIST-IN-RESIDENCE LISA BATIASHVILI WITH NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC
||Next up at Avery Fisher Hall, Alan leads the New York Philharmonic in the world premiere of Composer-in-Residence Christopher Rouse's Thunderstuck a Philharmonic co-commission that pays homage to some of the composer's favorite rock musicians from the 1960s and 1970s. Also on the program is Haydn's Symphony No. 103, Drumroll, and Brahms's Violin Concerto featuring Lisa Batiashvili. The four performances take place Thursday, October 9 through Saturday, October 11 (a matinee) and again on Tuesday, October 14.
On working with Lisa Batiashvili, whose performances will be her first as the New York Philharmonic's new Artist-in-Residence, Alan observes, "her astounding technique makes her playing seem effortless, but her passionate and fierce approach to music imbues everything she does with a life and death quality. I've worked with her for more than ten years now, and we are very much on the same wavelength: things just fall into place in rehearsal and performance without our ever having to speak about them. It's a great chemistry. Hers is one of the great versions of the Brahms Violin Concerto, so it is the perfect way to start her residency."
At the matinee performance on October 11, Brahms' Violin concerto will be replaced by Dvorák's String Quartet in F major, American, performed by the New York Philharmonic's Acting Principal Associate Concertmaster Michelle Kim; Acting Principal, Second Violin Group, Lisa Kim; Associate Principal Viola Rebecca Young, and Associate Principal Cello Eileen Moon. Find more information and tickets here.
|29 SEPTEMBER 2014||NIELSEN PROJECT CONTINUES WITH MASKARADE OVERTURE AND SYMPHONIES 5 AND 6
||Alan Gilbert and the New York Philharmonic continue The Nielsen Project — their acclaimed multi-season survey of the six symphonies and three concertos by Danish composer Carl Nielsen — with performances of his Maskarade Overture and Symphonies No. 5 and No. 6, Sinfonia semplice, Monday, October 1 through Wednesday, October 3. An open rehearsal will take place on October 1 at 9:45am. Find tickets and more information here.
"The New York Philharmonic has the perfect sound and perfect approach to Nielsen's music," says Alan. "The Fifth Symphony, which is an undeniable masterpiece, hasn't been played by the New York Philharmonic for 11 years, and, amazingly, the orchestra has never before performed the Sixth Symphony. Both symphonies are tonal, romantic, expressive, exciting, and vivid."
The symphonies will be recorded for later release as part of a four-recording set, released by Dacapo and distributed by Naxos, that will coincide with the 150th anniversary of the composer's birth in June 2015. Alan and the New York Philharmonic will present the final program of The Nielsen Project in January 2015, when Principal Clarinet Anthony McGill performs Nielsen's Clarinet Concerto in his Philharmonic debut.
|25 SEPTEMBER 2014||SWEENEY TODD BROADCAST ON LIVE FROM LINCOLN CENTER SEPTEMBER 26
||The New York Philharmonic's March 2014 production of Sondheim's grisly musical thriller Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street with Alan Gilbert at the helm makes its way to TV screens nationwide on Friday, September 26 at 9pm on PBS as part of Live From Lincoln Center.
Stephen Sondheim's Tony and Drama Desk Award-winning musical, which was directed by Lonny Price, was met with a chorus of critical praise, including by New York Magazine, which raved "Alan Gilbert has already shown that the Philharmonic can be the best opera company in town; now he's put Broadway on notice, too." Bass-baritone Bryn Terfel stars as the title character alongside Academy Award-winning actress Emma Thompson as Mrs. Lovett, who made her role debut in the production as well as her New York Philharmonic debut and New York stage debut. Set in Victorian London, the show tells the story of the eponymous barber who seeks vengeance on what he sees as a merciless world by murdering his customers and, with the help of his landlady, the romantically inclined Mrs. Lovett, bakes their bodies into meat pies, which are fed to London's avid and unknowing populace. Check your local listings for broadcast details.
|23 SEPTEMBER 2014||ALAN GILBERT LAUNCHES NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC SUBSCRIPTION SEASON WITH US PREMIERE OF UNSUK CHIN CLARINET CONCERTO AND PERFORMANCE OF MAHLER 1
||Alan Gilbert conducts the US Premiere of Unsuk Chin's Clarinet Concerto — a New York Philharmonic co-commission with the Gothenburg Symphony, WDR Symphony, Philharmonia, and Barcelona Symphony orchestras — performed by Kari Kriikku as soloist, as well as Mahler's Symphony No. 1, to kick off the New York Philharmonic's 2014-15 subscription season.
"Unsuk Chin has quickly become very close and important to the Philharmonic," Alan explains. "There's something unique about the way she combines traditional sounds and instruments, turns it into something utterly fresh and modern, and at the same time stays true to her cultural heritage. Her music expresses something very deep and human."
Alan first conducted Mahler's Symphony No. 1 at the Philharmonic in May 2009, when he was the orchestra's new Music Director Designate. Anthony Tommasini praised the performance in an enthusiastic review for the New York Times: "It was a thrill to hear the work performed with such precision and daring by the Philharmonic under Mr. Gilbert, conducting from memory. During the blazing episodes in the finale, he drove the orchestra to frenzied outbursts, all the more terrifying for being executed with such cool command. The tremendous ovation bodes well for his coming tenure as the orchestra's music director."
The performances take place on Tuesday, September 23, Friday, September 26, Saturday, September 27, and Tuesday, September 30. The first performance is preceded by an open rehearsal at 9:45 AM. Find more information and tickets to the performances here.
|22 SEPTEMBER 2014||LATEST NIELSEN PROJECT RECORDING NOW AVAILABLE FROM DACAPO AND NAXOS
||Alan Gilbert and the New York Philharmonic's performances of Carl Nielsen's Symphonies No. 1 and No. 4, "The Inextinguishable" are now available in the US on the Dacapo label with distribution by Naxos as part of the Nielsen Project — their multi-season survey of the six symphonies and three concertos by Denmark's beloved composer — with international release on October 1. Buy the album on Amazon.com or iTunes, or stream it on Spotify.
The performance side of the Nielsen Project culminates this season, with performances of the Maskarade Overture and Symphonies Nos. 5 and 6 taking place October 1 through 3 and performances of the Clarinet Concerto, featuring Principal Clarinet Anthony McGill as soloist in his Philharmonic debut, January 8 through 13. In 2015 the collected Nielsen Project recordings will be released as a complete set in commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the composer's birth.