New York Philharmonic: What's New: Latest News and Stories About The New York Philharmonic

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Meet the Musicians After the Concert

Post-Concert Greet

Subscribers have been enjoying informal post-concert meet and greets with musicians. The first was November 1 at Arpeggio, the bar/café in the lobby of Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center. Duoming Ba, Wei Yu (pictured, with a subscriber), Quan Ge, and Yulia Ziskel were the musicians who attended. 

These occasions are part of Subscriber Appreciation Month. Three meet and greets remain: Friday, November 15; Tuesday, November 19; and Thursday, November 21. Subscribers: look for your invitation at your seat. We hope to see you at, and after, the concert.

For information on subscribing, click here.


Trumpeting Bach's Praises

Gottfried Reiche and Matthew Muckey 

Bach’s cantata Jauchzet Gott in allen Landen opens tonight’s concert culminating in Mozart’s Requiem (the program is repeated tomorrow and Saturday). It puts soprano and trumpet in the spotlight with seriously demanding parts that, when performed well, convey the joy and praise in the text. As Program Annotator James M. Keller’s program note points out,

It seems likely that Bach’s accustomed trumpeter, Gottfried Reiche, played the obbligato part. He would have been 63 years old when the piece was unveiled, but he was still active at that (for then) advancing age.

Associate Principal Trumpet Matthew Muckey makes his Philharmonic subscription debut as a soloist in the trumpet part. He joined us in 2006, on his 22nd birthday, having just graduated from Northwestern. In a Q&A for Playbill last March, Muckey said the most difficult thing about the trumpet was that “it’s a very athletic and dangerous instrument because everyone hears it. I practice almost every day. If not, I have to re-step. It’s an instrument you have to take on vacation with you.”

What Do Alan Gilbert and Tom Brady Have in Common?

Talent, practice, hand signals, tempo.... Watch this thoughtful, fun story reported by Wynton Marsalis for CBS This Morning on the similarities between being a top quarterback and a top conductor. Don't miss the studio banter with Charlie Rose at the end, featuring a shout-out to Principal Trumpet Philip Smith, who we just announced is retiring from the Philharmonic at the end of this season.

Philharmonic Musicians Coach Youth of Harmony Program

Harmony Program Coaching 

As we did in April, on Saturday, November 2 the Philharmonic provided an afternoon of free coaching to the young students of the Harmony Program, an El Sistema–inspired program. The event took place at United Palace Theatre in Washington Heights, Manhattan.

The Harmony Program is the largest El Sistema–inspired youth orchestra program in New York City. Founded by Anne Fitzgibbon, Harmony Program provides daily after-school music lessons to children from economically disadvantaged communities. In the spirit of El Sistema, the Harmony Program emphasizes the influence of music-making on social development, encourages learning through ensemble playing, fosters a supportive community for program participants and families, and requires of all involved a high degree of commitment to daily music study.

"This master class is a highlight of our year, and we’re so grateful to the New York Philharmonic for making it possible," said Fitzgibbon. "One of our young students was so inspired that he asked his trumpet teacher for the day, Paul Murphy, how to join the Philharmonic. Paul told him that musicians do a lot of auditions and are not always successful, so they have to keep trying. That message is exactly what we try to impart to our kids."

The musicians who coached included Marc Ginsberg, Principal Second Violin (pictured); Anna Rabinova, violin; Judith Nelson, viola; Nathan Vickery, cello; Mindy Kaufman, flute; Pavel Vinnick (substitute); Paul Murphy (Teaching Artist); George Curran, bass trombone; Victoria Aschheim (Teaching Artist); and Michael Adelson.

(Photo by Mike Fitelson)

Alan Gilbert Back in Germany for Dates in Munich, Hamburg

Alan Gilbert 

Music Director Alan Gilbert is back in Germany. He arrived in Munich on Monday, and he's been rehearsing with the Munich Philharmonic for concerts October 31–November 3. After that, he heads to Hamburg to lead the NDR Symphony November 7–10.

Gilbert led the Berlin Philharmonic September 12–14 in a program of Lutosławski, Janáček, and Bartók. In its review, the Berliner Zeitung wrote:

“The precision of Gilbert’s interpretation as he negotiates moments within the piece as a whole, along with the extent to which he brings out the true essence of the work, is truly impressive. ... The audience, thrilled by the performance, continued to applaud the conductor even as the musicians had already begun to pack up their instruments backstage.”

The Berliner Morgenpost said:

“Guest conducting the Berlin Philharmonic can be such a pleasure, with the approval of the orchestra, that is — and they approve of Alan Gilbert. The musicians trust him completely, and give him total liberty over the work.... [T]he sound that emerges from the expert orchestra is most impressive.”

The Munich concerts feature a program of Bruckner's Symphony No. 4 and Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 3, with Yefim Bronfman, The Mary and James G. Wallach Artist-in-Residence. Gilbert and Bronfman will perform the concerto in June, during The Beethoven Piano Concertos: A Philharmonic Festival.

"I love conducting in Munich!" Gilbert said:

"There’s something so focused about the way the audience treats the whole musical experience. It’s a special place to perform, and to be able to do Bruckner with the Munich Philharmonic, an orchestra that has done so many wonderful Bruckner performances with, among others, Mehta, Celibidache and Levine, is something I’m looking forward to enormously. This is the second time I’m conducting the orchestra. Our first time together had such a special chemistry that it’s a real shame it has taken so long to have the chance to perform together again."

The Hamburg program consists of Dvorák's Violin Concerto (with Frank Peter Zimmermann) and Gilbert's A Ring Journey, his arrangement, after Erich Leinsdorf, of music by Wagner.

(Photo: Alan Gilbert conducts the Berlin Philharmonic, September 2013, by dpa)

Thank-You Notes Usher in Subscriber Appreciation Month

 Subscriber Appreciation Month

As many of you have learned from thank-you notes on your seats, our third-annual Subscriber Appreciation Month began October 25.

That night, approximately 950 subscribers found a signed letter from Concertmaster Glenn Dicterow taped to their seat. Included with the note was a coupon for a free gift at one of our Subscriber Appreciation podiums on the Grand Promenade. The gift is a shrink-wrapped package of four notecards with New York Philharmonic images on them.

Subscriber Appreciation Month goes until November 22. Subscribers of 50 or more years will find a rose on their seat. Subscribers of three or more years will see their name listed in a recognition insert in Playbill. Subscribers of 50 or more years will be invited to take an Archives tour with Archivist Barbara Haws.

More fun ideas are in the works. Subscribers: it's official. We truly appreciate you, and thank you.

(Photo by James Eng)

Alan Gilbert Leads Juilliard Orchestra with 'Humanity' and 'Testosterone'

Alan Gilbert conducts the Juilliard Orchestra

"It is a testimony to the conductor Alan Gilbert’s commitment to education that while busy with his work as music director of the New York Philharmonic he is also the director of conducting and orchestral studies at the Juilliard School," wrote The New York Times' Anthony Tommasini October 18, in a listing item for the performance by Gilbert and the Juilliard Orchestra at Carnegie Hall October 21.

Reviewing the concert for the Times, Corinna da Fonseca Wollheim wrote, "Mr. Gilbert, who conducted the hourlong symphony from memory, shaped a performance that combined deep humanity, especially in the Adagio, with high charges of testosterone in the Scherzo and Finale." She added:

There are experts — I’m not one of them — who can identify an orchestra by its sound. During Monday evening’s concert of the Juilliard Orchestra at Carnegie Hall, I found myself wondering what these people would have heard if they had sat blindfolded through this program of works by Bartok and Bruckner, conducted by Alan Gilbert. As powerful waves of rich brass chords rolled out during the last movement of Bruckner’s Symphony No. 7, would they have guessed that the players are students, most in their early 20s? When the sound of the violins intensified with the heat and gleam of molten metal, could they have known that the section was almost entirely made up of women?

In any case, such a blind test would have deprived the listener of the visual pleasure of watching this polished and passionate ensemble dig into Bruckner’s music with a palpable thirst for adventure.

(Photo by Peter Schaaf)

New York Philharmonic and Present Free Webcasts October 27–31

"I love New York Philharmonic" 

Beginning Sunday, October 27, will air five free Webcasts of special New York Philharmonic performances as part of its “I ♥ New York Philharmonic” festival. The programs will be available for viewing through November 3.

Here are the programs (streams begin at 3:00 p.m. New York time):

October 27: A Dancer's Dream, a multidisciplinary, theatrical reimagining of Stravinsky's The Fairy’s Kiss and Petrushka, led by Music Director Alan Gilbert, created by Giants Are Small, and starring New York City Ballet principal dancer Sara Mearns, from June 2013

October 28: Stockhausen's Gruppen, performed as part of Philharmonic 360, a co-presentation with Park Avenue Armory from 2012, led by Alan Gilbet, Magnus Lindberg, and Matthias Pintscher

October 29: “The Pyongyang Concert,” featuring the Philharmonic's historic 2008 performance in Pyongyang, North Korea, led by then-Music Director Lorin Maazel and featuring Dvorák’s “New World” Symphony and works by Gershwin and Bernstein

October 30: Chinese New Year Gala Concert performances led by Long Yu and featuring pianist Lang Lang and mezzo-soprano Jennifer Johnson Cano

October 31: Magnus Lindberg's Kraft at Volkswagen's Transparent Factory in Dresden, Germany, led by Alan Gilbert as part of the Orchestra’s EUROPE / SPRING 2013 tour



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