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2016 Concerts in the Parks Begin in Central Park

The New York Philharmonic's Concerts in the Parks are back for another summer of beautiful music under the stars. The 51st season kicked off this week with two concerts on Central Park's Great Lawn, drawing more than 63,000 music lovers over two nights. The first night opened with a tribute to the victims of the Orlando tragedy. Principal Clarinet Anthony McGill was the soloist in Mozart's lyrical Clarinet Concerto, and Music Director Alan Gilbert led the New York Philharmonic — plus four New York Philharmonic Global Academy students having the opportunity of a lifetime — in music by Beethoven, plus R. Strauss and Wagner. 

Touring New York City

After back-to-back performances in Central Park, Alan Gilbert and the New York Philharmonic took the Concerts in the Parks, Presented by Didi and Oscar Schafer — with major corporate support from MetLife Foundation, Citi, and Emirates Airline — on the road, bringing priceless music, absolutely free, to Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx, and Staten Island. Before the Orchestra performed works by Rossini, Mozart, Richard Strauss, and others, each concert was preceded by an appearance by a band from each borough through Share the Stage, the Philharmonic’s initiative to salute the diversity of New York City's resident musicians.

PHOTOS: Concerts in the Parks Conclude in Queens and Staten Island

The celebration of the 50th anniversary of the New York Philharmonic Concerts in the Parks, Presented by Didi and Oscar Schafer, wrapped up this week with an all-American program led by Music Director Alan Gilbert in Queens's Cunningham Park, and a Free Indoor Concert in Staten Island featuring Musicians from the New York Philharmonic. Special for the 50th anniversary was Share the Stage pre-show entertainment: jazz percussionist Steven Kroon warmed up the crowd in Queens, and folk musicians Bob Conroy and Norm Pederson with Bill Doerge welcomed the Staten Island audience.

PHOTOS: 50th Anniversary of Concerts in the Parks Continues in Central Park and Brooklyn

38,000 music lovers gathered in Manhattan’s Central Park and Brooklyn’s Prospect Park for two of this summer’s New York Philharmonic Concerts in the Parks, Presented by Didi and Oscar Schafer, celebrating 50 years of priceless music, absolutely free. The 50th anniversary festivities included a Share the Stage pre-show performance by the Brooklyn Interdenominational Choir and an exhibit exploring the Philharmonic’s history in Brooklyn. Charles Dutoit led both Philharmonic concerts, with soloist Renaud Capuçon and music by Berlioz, Saint-Saëns, Stravinsky, and Ravel.

PHOTOS: 50th Anniversary of Concerts in the Parks Begins in Central Park

The New York Philharmonic and 55,000+ of its fans gathered in Central Park Wednesday for a night of musical fireworks (and actual fireworks) celebrating 50 years of the beloved New York Philharmonic Concerts in the Parks, Presented by Didi and Oscar Schafer. Music Director Alan Gilbert and the Orchestra played Barber, Rodgers, and Sousa, plus Bernstein with violinist Joshua Bell.

Concerts in the Parks Scavenger Hunt: Staten Island Clues

Concerts in the Parks New York Philharmonic

Last week we launched the New York Philharmonic Concerts in the Parks 50th Anniversary Scavenger Hunt with five clues each for Manhattan and Brooklyn. Congrats to sisters @mauiiwowwie (on Twitter) and @jilliansadsad (on Instagram), joint Grand Prize winners for Manhattan, and @sim_inthecity (on Instagram), Grand Prize winner for Brooklyn!

Staten Island, you're up! The Grand Prize includes two VIP passes for the Free Indoor Concert in Staten Island on June 24, a deluxe Picnycs basket, and two tickets to a subscription concert next season. Full details and instructions.

Staten Island Clues

  1. The first Staten Island venue for Concerts in the Parks was this park in the Sunnyside neighborhood. Take a photo there and post with #nypparks50!
  2. On March 12, 1957, the Philharmonic, led by Dimitri Mitropoulos, performed at this grand Art Deco theater on Bay Street, which has been shuttered for more than 25 years. Take a photo there and post with #nypparks50!
  3. From 1995 to 2002, the Philharmonic performed at this former Army Air Corps base, now a recreational area. Take a photo there and post with #nypparks50!
  4. This year the Philharmonic performs at the Music Hall of this former “haven for aged, decrepit and worn out sailors.” Take a photo there and post with #nypparks50!
  5. As part of celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Concerts in the Parks, this summer local musicians open for the Philharmonic in Brooklyn, Queens, Bronx, and Staten Island. The Staten Island opening act are folk musicians from this living history village and museum complex. Take a photo there and post with #nypparks50!

Happy hunting!

(Photo: Chris Lee)

Concerts in the Parks Scavenger Hunt: Bronx Clues

Concerts in the Parks New York Philharmonic

Last week we launched the New York Philharmonic Concerts in the Parks 50th Anniversary Scavenger Hunt with five clues each for Manhattan and Brooklyn. Congrats to sisters @mauiiwowwie (on Twitter) and @jilliansadsad (on Instagram), joint Grand Prize winners for Manhattan, and @sim_inthecity (on Instagram), Grand Prize winner for Brooklyn!

The Grand Prize includes two VIP passes for the Concerts in the Park Bronx concert, a deluxe Picnycs basket, and two tickets to a subscription concert next season. Full details and instructions.

Bronx, you're up!

Bronx Clues

  1. Arturo Toscanini, New York Philharmonic Music Director from 1928 to 1936, lived in this Riverdale estate from 1942 to 1945. It is now a public garden and cultural center. Take a photo of it and post with #nypparks50!
  2. The first “park” the Philharmonic performed in in the Bronx, starting in 1965, is this botanical gem of New York City. Take a photo there and post with #nypparks50!
  3. Leopold Damrosch, Music Director of the New York Philharmonic from 1876 to 1877, is buried in the Bronx. Take a photo of his grave and post with #nypparks50!
  4. In The Godfather, which the New York Philharmonic presents in September with the Orchestra performing the score live, has an iconic scene in which Michael shoots and kills Sollozzo and police captain McCluskey. That scene was shot at the now-closed Luna Restaurant, in the Bronx. Take a picture of the street sign of the street it was on and post with #nypparks50!
  5. In Van Cortlandt Park, where the Philharmonic performs this summer, there is a statue evoking a famous Aesop’s Fable. Take a photo and post with #nypparks50!

Happy hunting!

(Photo: Chris Lee)

Concerts in the Parks Scavenger Hunt: Queens Clues

Concerts in the Parks New York Philharmonic

Last week we launched the New York Philharmonic Concerts in the Parks 50th Anniversary Scavenger Hunt with five clues each for Manhattan and Brooklyn. Congrats to sisters @mauiiwowwie (on Twitter) and @jilliansadsad (on Instagram), joint Grand Prize winners for Manhattan, and @sim_inthecity (on Instagram), Grand Prize winner for Brooklyn!

Queens, it’s your turn!

Queens Clues

  1. In 1956, this jazz great “and his All-Stars” performed “St. Louis Blues” with the New York Philharmonic and conductor Leonard Bernstein. He lived for many years in Corona, and his house is now a museum. Take a photo of the house/museum and post with #nypparks50!
  2. The official piano of the New York Philharmonic is a company with a factory in Long Island City. Take a photo of the factory sign or front door and post with #nypparks50!
  3. This Japanese-American sculptor designed the sets for Martha Graham’s dance for Copland’s Appalachian Spring, which the Philharmonic performs this summer in the Concerts in the Parks. There is a museum devoted to him in Long Island City. Take a photo of it and post with #nypparks50!
  4. From 1965 to 1989, the New York Philharmonic Concerts in the Parks performed in this park in Bayside when visiting Queens. Take a photo of the sign and post with #nypparks50!
  5. Music students at this Astoria performing-arts high school named for an iconic blue-eyed pop singer (and founded by another iconic pop singer) have benefited from exposure to New York Philharmonic musicians and Teaching Artists as part of the Philharmonic’s Education programs. Take a photo of the school and post with #nypparks50!

Happy hunting!

(Photo: Chris Lee)

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