New York Philharmonic
Founded in 1842, the New York Philharmonic is the oldest symphony orchestra in the United
States and one of the oldest in the world; on May 5, 2010, it performed its 15,000th
concert. Music Director Alan Gilbert, The Yoko Nagae Ceschina Chair, began his tenure in
September 2009, succeeding a distinguished line of 20th-century musical giants that goes
back to Gustav Mahler and Arturo Toscanini. The orchestra has always played a leading role
in American musical life, commissioning and/or premiering works by each era's leading
composers, some of whom have won the Pulitzer Prize. Renowned around the globe, the
Philharmonic has appeared in 430 cities in 63 countries-including the February 2008
historic visit to Pyongyang, DPRK, for which the Philharmonic earned the 2008 Common Ground
Award for Cultural Diplomacy.
The Philharmonic, which appears annually on Live From Lincoln Center on PBS,
is the only American orchestra to have a 52-week-per-year nationally and internationally
syndicated radio series-The New York Philharmonic This
Week-which is also streamed on nyphil.org. The orchestra has made nearly
2,000 recordings since 1917, with more than 500 currently available, and including several
Grammy Award winners. Since June 2009, more than 50 concerts have been released as
downloads, available at all major online music stores, and the Philharmonic's self-produced
recordings continue in the 2011-2012 season. Famous for the long-running Young People's
Concerts, the Philharmonic has developed a wide range of education programs, among them the
School Partnership Program that enriches music education in New York City, and Learning
Overtures, which fosters international exchange among educators.
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New York Philharmonic Music Director Alan Gilbert, The Yoko Nagae Ceschina Chair, began
his tenure in September 2009. The first native New Yorker to hold the post, he has sought
to make the orchestra a point of civic pride for the city as well as for the country.
Mr. Gilbert's creative approach to programming combines works in fresh and innovative
ways. He has also forged artistic partnerships, introducing the positions of The
Marie-Josée Kravis Composer-in-Residence and The Mary and James G. Wallach
Artist-in-Residence, an annual three-week festival, and CONTACT!, a new-music
series. In 2011-2012, he conducts world premieres and three Mahler symphonies, takes up a
residency at London's Barbican Centre, and tours to Europe and California, with a
season-concluding musical exploration of space at the Park Avenue Armory that features
Stockhausen's theatrical immersion Gruppen. In October 2011, he made his
Philharmonic debut as soloist when he joined Frank Peter Zimmermann in J. S. Bach's
Concerto for Two Violins. Last season's highlights included two tours of European music
capitals, Carnegie Hall's 120th Anniversary Gala, and an acclaimed concert performance of
Janáček's The Cunning Little Vixen, building on 2010's wildly successful staging
of Ligeti's Le grand macabre.
In September 2011, Mr. Gilbert became director of conducting and orchestral studies at The
Juilliard School, where he is also the first to hold the William Schuman Chair in Musical
Studies. He also serves as conductor laureate of the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra
and principal guest conductor of Hamburg's NDR Symphony Orchestra, and conducts leading
orchestras nationally and internationally that include the Boston Symphony Orchestra,
Amsterdam's Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, and the Berliner Philharmoniker.
Alan Gilbert made his acclaimed Metropolitan Opera debut in 2008, leading John Adams's
Doctor Atomic; the DVD and Blu-ray of this production received a 2011 Grammy Award
for Best Opera Recording. Earlier releases garnered Grammy Award nominations and top honors
from the Chicago Tribune and Gramophone magazine. Mr. Gilbert
studied at Harvard University, the Curtis Institute of Music, and Juilliard, and was
assistant conductor of The Cleveland Orchestra (1995-1997). In May 2010, he received an
honorary Doctor of Music degree from the Curtis Institute, and in December 2011, he
received Columbia University's Ditson Conductor's Award for his "exceptional commitment to
the performance of works by American composers and to contemporary music."