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New Young People’s Concerts Play! Explores Sibelius

Young People’s Concerts Play! (nyphil.org/ypcplay) has been making our beloved Young People’s Concerts (YPCs) accessible from the comfort of your own home or classroom with free on-demand streaming and learning games since the platform was unveiled this time last year.

Now, a new release, “Jean Sibelius — Music of a Hero, Music of a Nation,” explores what makes music sound heroic and how anthems can unite. There’s a composition game designed by NYU Steinhardt’s Music Experience Design Lab; videos featuring lessons with Philharmonic Teaching Artists and the Orchestra performing original music by Very Young Composers; and “Build Your Own Orchestra,” an interactive audio-visual experience that allows students to explore an orchestral piece with Philharmonic players.

Start playing!

Something’s Coming: Bernstein’s Philharmonic: A Centennial Festival

Calling all Bernstein lovers! The Philharmonic is celebrating Lenny’s 100th birthday with Bernstein’s Philharmonic: A Centennial Festival (October 25–November 14) plus other events throughout the season — concerts, education activities, a Mahler marathon, and more — befitting the renowned composer, conductor, pianist, and educator who served as our Music Director (1958–69) and then Laureate Conductor.

Festival highlights include:
Bernstein-successor Alan Gilbert and Bernstein-protégé Leonard Slatkin leading Bernstein’s complete symphonies, with Jeremy Irons as speaker in the Kaddish Symphony, plus music by Gershwin and more (details here for the first program, second program, and third program)
An all-Bernstein Young People’s Concert — the series that Bernstein famously brought to national attention through the TV broadcasts 
Harvard and University of Michigan students studying Bernstein as an educator and conductor, and interviewing Philharmonic audience members who attended Bernstein’s Young People’s Concerts as children
Leonard Bernstein: The Philharmonic’s First American Voice, an archival exhibit featuring original material from the Philharmonic Archives
The free Insights at the Atrium event “Inside the Orchestra: Working with Bernstein,” featuring Philharmonic musicians past and present reflecting on Bernstein as conductor and colleague

Later in the season, the tributes include performances plus the free event “Bernstein’s Mahler Marathon: The Sony Recordings,” 13 hours of Bernstein’s performances of his Philharmonic predecessor’s complete symphonies, and collaborations with the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts.

To quote the man himself: “It’s been a family association in many ways, and even though faces change, the entity, the totality of the New York Philharmonic remains solid, and I remain bound to it by mysterious cords which tie me to the orchestra as long as I live. In some funny, spiritual sense, they will always be my orchestra, no matter who else’s orchestra they may be.”

New York Philharmonic Launches Young People’s Concerts Play!

New York Philharmonic Young People's Concerts

The New York Philharmonic is bringing its famed Young People’s Concerts (YPCs) into the 21st century and around the world. Today we announced the launch of Young People’s Concerts Play!, a new online learning platform making YPCs available for on-demand streaming, enhanced by interactive lessons. Check out the first releases — YPCs focusing on Britten’s The Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra and Mendelssohn’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream — for free at nyphil.org/ypcplay.

Coming up in the spring of 2017: a YPC focusing on Dvořák’s Symphony No. 9, From the New World, recorded from YPCs for Schools performances taking place in January 2017. The program is part of The New World Initiative, the Philharmonic’s season-long, citywide project revolving around Dvořák’s New World Symphony and its theme of “home” on the occasion of the Philharmonic’s 175th anniversary season.

Young People’s Concerts Play! also features composition games designed by New York University’s MusEdWorks, Inc.; teaching videos about themes of the central musical works; and “Build Your Own Orchestra,” an interactive audio-visual experience created by Musicjelly and commissioned in partnership with London’s Barbican Centre that allows students to explore and deconstruct an orchestral piece with Philharmonic players. Philharmonic Teaching Artists will visit schools in underserved neighborhoods to demonstrate the platform in-person.

Young People’s Concerts Play! continues the Philharmonic’s tradition of sharing YPCs as widely as possible. The Philharmonic presented its first of the current YPC series in 1924, and the series was televised from 1958 to 1972, conducted and hosted by Philharmonic Laureate Conductor Leonard Bernstein.

Check out The New York Times story here.

(Photo: Michael DiVito)

PHOTOS: Shanghai Residency Concludes

That's a wrap. The New York Philharmonic has completed its first annual performance residency as part of the four-year Shanghai Orchestra Academy and Residency Partnership (presented by the Starr International Foundation). The eight days of concerts and coachings included the first-ever Young People’s Concert in China — in which the Orchestra’s ranks included Shanghai Orchestra Academy students, and which featured music by Very Young Composers of Shanghai and New York City, a Bernstein triptych, and the Chinese premiere of a work by Philharmonic Board Member Karen T. LeFrak with a dynamic video by NYC & Company. The residency and partnership is part of the New York Philharmonic Global Academy.

Harmony All Stars Ensemble Start Philharmonic Mentorship

Harmony Project All Stars New York Philharmonic

The inaugural Harmony All Stars Ensemble — nine middle- and high-school students from low-income neighborhoods in New York City selected by audition — have begun their 11-day mentorship with New York Philharmonic musicians!

Six of the All Stars attended Saturday's Young People's Concert, the first Music Director Alan Gilbert has conducted. The orchestra was dressed in their section-specific outfits provided by Uniqlo, sponsor of this season's Young People's Concerts.

Alan Gilbert New York Philharmonic Young People's Concert

Afterward, the All Stars got to meet Alan and their Philharmonic mentors. In the photo at top, the All Stars pose with Alan, violinist Hae-Young Ham (center right), violinist Anna Rabinova (center left), Vice President, Education Theodore Wiprud (back right), Harmony Program Executive Director Anne Fitzgibbon (left), and Bass Trombone George Curran (back left).

That's just the beginning. Starting Thursday, the All Stars will attend a Philharmonic rehearsal, have an intensive day of coaching and rehearsal, and perform with their Philharmonic mentors at a free public concert in the David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center on May 20. See you there!

(Photos: Michael DiVito)

PHOTOS: London

Alan Gilbert and the Philharmonic presented their signature projects in London during the Orchestra's second residency at the Barbican Centre under the auspices of its International Associates initiative. Just a few highlights: a genre-bending staging of Stravinksy's Petrushka at a Young People's Concert, an interactive installation allowing kids to digitally "conduct" the Philharmonic, a new-music concert, and a critically acclaimed performance with Joyce DiDonato. 

Coming to the Concert Saturday? Bring a Coat for the Clothing Drive with UNIQLO

UNIQLO NY Philharmonic Young People's Concerts

Ludwig van Brrthoven, earlier

This Saturday, come in from the cold and enjoy the Young People's Concert with the young people in your life. Titled Super Sonic Music Box: “Orchestra Transformed,” the concert features the Silk Road Ensemble, who, with the Philharmonic, will celebrate influences and instruments from different cultures.

You'll hear a gaita, a Galician (Spain) bagpipe instrument, and a suona, a Chinese wind instrument, and works by composers ranging from Mozart to Kojiro Umezaki and Sapo Perapaskero. 

We invite you to bring an old winter coat or other gently used clothes and drop them in one of the bins around Avery Fisher Hall. Volunteers from UNIQLO, which sponsors this season's Young People's Concerts and is dressing the Orchestra for them, will distribute them at New York City Homeless Shelters. 

The concert's at 2:00 p.m., but be sure to come at 1:00 for YPC Overtures, a mix of fun musical activities throughout the hall. Follow the first link above for info, a podcast, and TuneUp educational program notes.

(Photo: Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts)

UNIQLO To Dress Orchestra for Young People's Concerts — Match Colors with Your Favorite Section!

UNIQLO NY Philharmonic

Starting Saturday, UNIQLO will dress the Orchestra for Young People's Concerts (YPCs). Strings will be dressed in red or pink; brass in blue; woodwinds in green; percussion in orange; and the harp and keyboard in light blue. Children are invited to come dressed in the color of their favorite section!

In addition, UNIQLO and the New York Philharmonic are conducting a clothing drive for New York City homeless shelters during this season's YPCs in Avery Fisher Hall. Please bring gently used clothing and place them in the bins located on the Grand Promenade. UNIQLO and the Philharmonic have also donated 50 tickets for Saturday's YPC to the New York City Department of Homeless Services.

Arrive early for YPC Overtures, new features that let you engage with the Orchestra — in person, through live performance, and on-screen:

1:00–1:30 PM: Orchestra Meet and Greet on the Grand Promenade

1:00–1:45 PM: Storytime in the Helen Huntigton Hull Room, 2nd Tier (recommended for children ages 7 and under)

1:10–1:30 PM: Very Young Composers Showcase in the hall

1:30–2:00 PM: YPC Countdown in the hall

Click here for info plus a podcast and TuneUp! learning materials that you can enjoy whether or not you can join us Saturday.

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