Performances with the San Francisco Symphony in May

Oct 29, 2019

This May, Michael Tilson Thomas joins the San Francisco Symphony for performances at Davies Symphony Hall.

On May 14, 15, & 17, MTT and the orchestra perform Sibelius’s Fifth Symphony. They also welcome back Yuja Wang to San Francisco, for performances of Brahms’s Piano Concerto No. 1.

From May 22-24, MTT leads the SFS in concerts of Brahms’s Ein deutsches Requiem (A German Requiem). A major champion of Carl Ruggles, MTT also spotlights two pieces by the American composer: Angels and Sun-treader.


Oct 22, 2019

Today, Michael Tilson Thomas celebrates the 50th anniversary of his New York conducting debut, in which he stepped in for William Steinberg mid-concert to lead the Boston Symphony Orchestra at Philharmonic (now Geffen) Hall.

MTT had recently won the Koussevitzky Prize at Tanglewood and been appointed Assistant Conductor and pianist of the orchestra, so after Music Director Steinberg fell ill during the first half of the program, he said to MTT, “You! Put your suit on! You’re going to conduct!”

To hear MTT tell this story via PBS NewsHour’s “That Moment When” (4:49), click here.

The performance earned MTT international recognition and acclaim in The New York Times from then-senior music critic Harold Schonberg. Read below.

New World Symphony Concerts in May

Sep 30, 2019

This spring, Co-Founder and Artistic Director Michael Tilson Thomas returns to Miami to conclude the New World Symphony‘s 2019-20 season. 

On May 2 & 3, MTT and the NWS reunite at New World Center for Schubert’s Ninth Symphony, and are joined by Gautier Capuçon for Shostakovich’s Second Cello Concerto. To commence the program, Conducting Fellow Chad Goodman leads Glinka’s Krakoviak from A Life for the Tsar.

For more info, click here.

March SFS Concerts in San Francisco and Europe

Aug 29, 2019

This spring, Michael Tilson Thomas continues his final season as Music Director of the San Francisco Symphony. MTT and the SFS perform at Davies Symphony Hall before making their way to Europe.

On March 6, MTT and the symphony spotlight the world premiere of a new work by John Adams, a co-commissioned piece by the SFS and Carnegie Hall. The evening also hears Mahler’s Sixth Symphony, which awarded MTT and the SFS the Grammy Award for Best Orchestral Performance in 2002.

From March 12-14, MTT leads the orchestra in performances at Davies Symphony Hall. Together, they perform the West Coast premiere of his own Lope. They are joined by Gautier Capuçon for Shostakovich’s Second Cello Concerto No. 2, in a program that also hears Stravinsky’s The Firebird. 

For the first of their engagements at the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, MTT and the symphony spotlight Mahler’s Symphony No. 9 on March 24. The next day, they reprise Lope and The Firebird, in a program that also includes Rachmaninoff’s Fourth Piano Concerto with Daniil Trifonov.

Joining the Cleveland Orchestra this February

Aug 16, 2019

Michael Tilson Thomas reunites with the Cleveland Orchestra this February.

From February 20-22, MTT and the orchestra perform Berlioz’s Roman Carnival Overture and Symphonie Fantastique. The program also hears a new work by MTTwith guest singers Sasha Cooke and Dashon Burton.

For more info, click here.

Michael Tilson Thomas to receive 2019 Kennedy Center Honors

Jul 18, 2019

Michael Tilson Thomas has been selected by the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts as one of five Honorees who will receive the 2019 Kennedy Center Honors for lifetime artistic achievements. “[MTT] has shaped American music and musical institutions for the 21st century,” says Kennedy Center Chairman David M. Rubenstein.

“The life of an artist, or of an arts institution, has essentially two moments,” says MTT. “The first is inventing yourself which takes vision and gumption. The second is going the distance, sustaining the vision and sharing it. I was fortunate to grow up around people who did both. My family and my devoted teachers lived every day reaffirming the highest standards and ideals of the arts and of our nation. They understood that the arts really matter when they have a creative role in a living tradition. I am honored that the Kennedy Center, which is a living center of both arts and ideals, has chosen to recognize my work. I hope that I can be thought of as a representative for all American classical musicians at this remarkable event.”

Fellow recipients to be honored at the 42nd annual national celebration of the arts are R&B collective Earth, Wind & Fire, actress Sally Field, singer Linda Ronstadt, and children’s television program Sesame Street. The Kennedy Center Honors medallions will be presented on Saturday, December 7 at a State Department dinner, and recipients will be recognized and celebrated through performances and tributes at the 2019 Kennedy Center Honors Gala on Sunday, December 8. The Honors Gala will be recorded for broadcast on CBS for the 42nd consecutive year as a two-hour primetime special on Sunday, December 15 at 8:00 p.m. ET.

“In this class of honorees, we are witnessing a uniquely American story: one that is representative of so many cultural touchstones and musical moments that make our nation great,” said Kennedy Center President Deborah F. Rutter. “When I look at this class, I see the hopes, aspirations, and achievements not just of these honorees, but of the many generations they have influenced and continue to influence.We’re not just looking back; these honorees are urging us to look forward as well.”

Read more

Photo courtesy of the New World Symphony (Photo by Gary T’to)

January Concerts with the SFS

Jul 17, 2019

This January, Music Director Michael Tilson Thomas joins the San Francisco Symphony for performances at Davies Symphony Hall.

From January 9-12MTT and the SFS revisit Gustav Mahler with the composer’s Songs from Des Knaben Wunderhorn. MTT also leads the orchestra in the world premiere of his own Rilke Songs, based on the lyric poems of Rainer Maria Rilke. They are joined by mezzo-soprano Sasha Cooke, the SFS artist-in-residence, and bass-baritone Ryan McKinny.

MTT and the SFS commemorate the 250th anniversary of Beethoven’s birth with performances from January 16-18. They perform Beethoven’s Second Piano Concerto with renowned Beethoven interpreter Emanuel Ax. The program also hears the West Coast premiere of Julia Wolfe’s Fountain of Youth, Wagner’s Siegfried Idyll, and Berg’s Three Pieces for Orchestra.

Reuniting with LA Phil this December

Jul 3, 2019

This December, Michael Tilson Thomas reunites with the Los Angeles Philharmonic.

From December 12-15, MTT and the LA Phil perform at Walt Disney Concert Hall, where they are joined by pianist Daniil Trifonov. Together, they perform Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1, in programs that also hear Copland’s Symphony No. 3.

For more info, click here.

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