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Michael Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony kick off season-long celebration of Leonard Bernstein's birth centennial, Sept 22–24 at Davies Symphony Hall

August 24, 2017

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE / UPDATED SEPTEMBER 7, 2017
 

(High resolution images of Leonard Bernstein, Michael Tilson Thomas, Isabel Leonard, Ryan McKinny, and Carey Bell are available for download from the San Francisco Symphony’s Online Photo Library.)
 

MICHAEL TILSON THOMAS AND THE SAN FRANCISCO SYMPHONY KICK OFF SEASON-LONG CELEBRATION OF LEONARD BERNSTEIN’S BIRTH CENTENNIAL, SEPTEMBER 22–24 AT DAVIES SYMPHONY HALL

September program includes Bernstein’s Prelude, Fugue, and Riffs; Chichester Psalms; Arias and Barcarolles; and Symphonic Dances from West Side Story

Concerts feature mezzo-soprano Isabel Leonard, SFS Principal Clarinet Carey Bell, and bass-baritone Ryan McKinny making his SFS debut

Season-long celebrations continue with Bernstein’s The Age of Anxiety, Symphony No. 2 November 2, 3, and 5; Candide January 18–21; the West Side Story film with live orchestra February 1–3; and Divertimento and Serenade February 22–24

SAN FRANCISCO, CA—Music Director Michael Tilson Thomas (MTT) and the San Francisco Symphony (SFS) launch a season-long celebration of American icon Leonard Bernstein’s birth centennial with concerts September 22–24. Over the course of five concert programs in the coming season, the SFS presents highlights from Bernstein’s multifaceted catalog spanning diverse genres, musical styles, and thematic topics. Michael Tilson Thomas first met Leonard Bernstein after spending a summer at the Tanglewood Music Center in 1968 and they became longtime friends and colleagues. MTT, who has championed Bernstein’s music throughout his career, curated this season’s centennial tributes to showcase the breadth and depth of the composer’s musical genius. Click here to watch a video featuring MTT on the Bernstein Celebration.

MTT shared, “It is a joy to celebrate my friend and longtime colleague Leonard Bernstein’s spirit and legacy through his music next season. The programs I have planned throughout the season showcase widely varying sides of Bernstein’s work, from his comic operetta Candide and groundbreaking musical West Side Story, to his narrative symphony The Age of Anxiety and song cycle Arias and Barcarolles. Arias and Barcarolles is especially dear to me because I was involved in its premiere in 1988. Bernstein was a great friend to many people, and gifted us all his tremendously adventurous spirit.”

The September 22–24 concerts include performances of jazz ensemble showpiece Prelude, Fugue, and Riffs with SFS Principal Clarinet Carey Bell; the liturgical choral and orchestral work Chichester Psalms, showcasing the San Francisco Symphony Chorus under the direction of Ragnar Bohlin; the personal and humorous song cycle Arias and Barcarolles featuring mezzo-soprano Isabel Leonard and bass-baritone Ryan McKinney in his SFS debut; and Symphonic Dances from West Side Story

[To download the full PDF version of this press release, click the link at the top]

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