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National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America Embarks on European Tour in August 2019, Collaborating with World-Class Artists

Sir Antonio Pappano Leads Concerts at London's BBC Proms, Royal Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Edinburgh International Festival, Konzerthaus Berlin, and Elbphilharmonie Hamburg

Dame Sarah Connolly and Joyce DiDonato Join as Featured Guest Soloists

Listeners Around the World Invited to Tune In Via Radio, TV, and Online to Hear NYO-USA Performances from Berlin, London, and Hamburg

(August 1, 2019; NEW YORK, NY)— This summer, more than 100 outstanding teen musicians from 33 U.S. states have come together as the National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America (NYO-USA).

Following an intensive three-week training residency at Purchase College, State University of New York and concerts at the Tanglewood Music Festival and Carnegie Hall, this incredible group of instrumentalists (ages 16-19), led this summer by Sir Antonio Pappano, will now embark on a five-city European tour, including performances at Young Euro Classic in Berlin (August 6); the Edinburgh International Festival (August 9); the BBC Proms in London (August 11); the Royal Concertgebouw Amsterdam (August 13); and the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg (August 14).

This tour marks NYO-USA’s debut appearances in Berlin, Edinburgh, and Hamburg. The orchestra returns to the BBC Proms in London for the first time since the ensemble’s inaugural year in 2013. NYO-USA last performed in Amsterdam in 2016.

“We are thrilled that the National Youth Orchestra of the USA will be returning to Europe this summer under the baton of Sir Antonio Pappano,” said Clive Gillinson, Carnegie Hall’s Executive and Artistic Director. “When bringing together NYO-USA each summer, we seek members who are not only superb players and passionate about music, but also curious about connecting with people from all areas of the world. Wherever they travel, languages or traditions may vary, but invariably we find that love of great music is always universal. We couldn’t ask for better and more dynamic ambassadors for our country.”

Mezzo-soprano Dame Sarah Connolly will be featured as guest soloist in Berlioz’s Les nuits d'été for the orchestra’s first performance in Berlin. Mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato joins Maestro Pappano and the musicians as soloist in the Berlioz for the remainder of the tour.

In addition to Berlioz’s Les nuits d'été, NYO-USA’s tour repertoire this summer includes Prokofiev’s Symphony No. 5, Strauss’s Eine Alpensinfonie, and two new works written for the orchestra by NYO-USA teen apprentice composers—Benjamin S. Beckman from Los Angeles, California and Tyson J. Davis from Winston-Salem, North Carolina—both mentored during the NYO-USA residency by American composer Sean Shepherd. Beckman’s piece, Occidentalis, premiered at Tanglewood on August 1, will be heard during the orchestra’s performances in London and Amsterdam. Davis’s piece, Delicate Tension—which commemorates the 30th anniversary year of the fall of the Berlin Wall—will receive its world premiere at the Konzerthaus Berlin on August 6 and will also be performed in Edinburgh and Hamburg.

As NYO-USA prepares to depart New York City, the U.S. Embassy in Berlin offered its words of support: “The Embassy is pleased to welcome the National Youth Orchestra of the USA to Germany, and is excited that, as a celebration of the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, the concert will include the premiere of a new piece by an apprentice composer.” Upon arrival in Europe, the American Academy in Berlin and U.S. Embassy Berlin will co-host a reception in honor of the orchestra’s tour.

As in past years, in the spirit of cultural exchange, the members of NYO-USA will have the opportunity to meet peer musicians from around the world and experience local culture in the cities they visit. While in Scotland, they will meet up with members of NYO Scotland and take an excursion exploring Andrew Carnegie's home country, thanks to the hospitality of the Scottish government.

Ellen Wong, Principal Officer of the U.S. Consulate General in Edinburgh, said: “We are thrilled to be able to welcome NYO-USA to Scotland! These talented young musicians represent some of the brightest rising stars in American music. We are very excited not only to hear them perform but also that they will have an opportunity to make connections with young Scottish musicians during their visit and build the people-to-people ties that keep the U.S.-Scotland relationship strong!”

While in The Netherlands, NYO-USA will take part in a side-by-side event with RCO Young, a new European youth orchestra created by the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra. In London, the orchestra’s brass section will be bolstered by members of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain for their Proms performance, and, in Hamburg, players from the Bundesjugendorchester (BJO) and Felix Mendelssohn Jugendorchester will join the orchestra.

Many of the orchestra’s tour performances will also be broadcast live on the radio, TV, and online, reaching a wide international audience. The orchestra’s first tour concert at the Konzerthaus Berlin will be webcast live on Tuesday, August 6 at 2:00 p.m. EDT by ARTE (and simultaneously streamed by medici.tv). NYO-USA’s BBC Proms concert in London will be broadcast live on BBC Radio 3 on Sunday, August 11 at 6:00 a.m. EDT and filmed for delayed viewing on BBC Four TV, to air on Friday, August 16. The final concert of the tour at Elbphilharmonie Hamburg will be webcast live via medici.tv on Wednesday, August 14 at 2:00 p.m. EDT for viewers around the globe.

About the National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America
Each summer, Carnegie Hall’s Weill Music Institute brings together the finest young musicians from across the country (ages 16–19) to form the National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America (NYO-USA). Following a comprehensive audition process and a three-week training residency at Purchase College, State University of New York, with faculty made up of principal players from top professional US orchestras, these remarkable teenagers embark on a tour to some of the great music capitals of the world, serving as America’s dynamic music ambassadors. As part of their travel schedule, NYO-USA musicians also have the opportunity to meet and collaborate with local young musicians and experience the richness of the local culture.

Launched in summer 2013 to great acclaim, the first-ever National Youth Orchestra of the USA presented concerts with conductor Valery Gergiev and violinist Joshua Bell to enthusiastic audiences at the Kennedy Center in Washington DC; St. Petersburg and Moscow in Russia; and at the BBC Proms in London. The 2014 orchestra, led by American conductor David Robertson with violinist Gil Shaham as soloist, made its debut at Carnegie Hall in New York City, followed by a coast-to-coast US tour. In 2015, NYO-USA, with conductor Charles Dutoit and pianist YUNDI, made its debut in China with a seven-city tour, performing at some of the country’s greatest concert halls, including the National Centre for the Performing Arts in Beijing. In 2016, the orchestra performed with conductor Christoph Eschenbach and pianist Emanuel Ax at Carnegie Hall before embarking on a European tour with Valery Gergiev and Denis Matsuev. In 2017, the orchestra traveled to Latin America for the first time, performing in Mexico, Ecuador, and Colombia under the direction of Marin Alsop. And last summer, NYO-USA returned to Asia, performing in Taipei, Shanghai, Beijing, Seoul, and Daejeon with conductor Michael Tilson Thomas and pianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet.

NYO-USA is one of Carnegie Hall’s three acclaimed national youth orchestras, which also includes NYO2 for outstanding classical musicians (ages 14–17), and NYO Jazz for the nation’s finest jazz instrumentalists (ages 16–19).

National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America – Summer 2019 European Tour

Tuesday, August 6 at 8:00 p.m.
Konzerthaus Berlin, Young Euro Classic
Berlin, Germany

Sir Antonio Pappano, Conductor
Dame Sarah Connolly, Mezzo-Soprano

TYSON J. DAVIS Delicate Tension (World Premiere)
HECTOR BERLIOZ Les nuits d'été, Op. 7
SERGEI PROKOFIEV Symphony No. 5 in B-flat Major, Op. 100


Friday, August 9 at 8:00 p.m.
Usher Hall, Edinburgh International Festival
Edinburgh, Scotland

Sir Antonio Pappano, Conductor
Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-Soprano

TYSON J. DAVIS Delicate Tension
HECTOR BERLIOZ Les nuits d'été, Op. 7
SERGEI PROKOFIEV Symphony No. 5 in B-flat Major, Op. 100


Sunday, August 11 at 11:00 a.m.
Royal Albert Hall, BBC Proms
London, UK

Sir Antonio Pappano, Conductor
Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-Soprano

BENJAMIN S. BECKMAN Occidentalis
HECTOR BERLIOZ Les nuits d'été, Op. 7
RICHARD STRAUSS Eine Alpensinfonie, Op. 64


Tuesday, August 13 at 8:00 p.m.
Royal Concertgebouw Amsterdam, SummerConcerts powered by BankGiro Loterij
Amsterdam, Netherlands

Sir Antonio Pappano, Conductor
Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-Soprano

BENJAMIN S. BECKMAN Occidentalis
HECTOR BERLIOZ Les nuits d'été, Op. 7
SERGEI PROKOFIEV Symphony No. 5 in B-flat Major, Op. 100


Wednesday, August 14 at 8:00 p.m.
The Grand Hall, Elbphilharmonie Hamburg
Hamburg, Germany

Sir Antonio Pappano, Conductor
Joyce DiDonato, Mezzo-Soprano

TYSON J. DAVIS Delicate Tension
HECTOR BERLIOZ Les nuits d'été, Op. 7
RICHARD STRAUSS Eine Alpensinfonie, Op. 64 

*****

Lead Donors: Hope and Robert F. Smith, Marina Kellen French and the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation, The Kovner Foundation, Beatrice Santo Domingo, and Nicola and Beatrice Bulgari.

Global Ambassadors: Hope and Robert F. Smith, and Maggie and Richard Tsai.

NYO-USA Sponsor: United Airlines®, Official Airline of Carnegie Hall.

Major funding has been provided by The Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation, The Carl Jacobs Foundation, and JMCMRJ Sorrell Foundation.

Additional funding has been provided by Sarah Arison, The Jack Benny Family Foundation, Ann and Gordon Getty Foundation, and Mary Anne Huntsman Morgan and The Huntsman Foundation.

Public funding has been provided by the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

Founder Patrons: Blavatnik Family Foundation; Nicola and Beatrice Bulgari; The Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation; Marina Kellen French and the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; The Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Family Foundation; Ronald O. Perelman; Robertson Foundation; Beatrice Santo Domingo; Hope and Robert F. Smith; Sarah Billinghurst Solomon and Howard Solomon; and Joan and Sanford I. Weill and the Weill Family Foundation.

Bank of America is the Proud Season Sponsor of Carnegie Hall.

*****

What the press have said about the National Youth Orchestra of the USA:

“The performance exuded vitality and confidence.” — The New York Times

“This very large orchestra not only played with ferocious spirit and genuine personality, but it also produced refined performances notable for credible polish.” — Los Angeles Times

“It was the kind of night that reassures classical music lovers that the art form will survive well into the future.” — Musical America

“Throughout, the playing was of the highest caliber: controlled, precise, crisp, and nuanced, with perfect ensemble.” — Classical Voice North America 

“Carnegie Hall may have created the best music camp ever.” — National Public Radio

“With their debut this week it already seems safe to say that the future of classical music in America is stronger than it was even one month ago!” — The Times, London

“The whole ensemble played with electric commitment.” — The Guardian

*****

To learn more about NYO-USA, visit carnegiehall.org/nyousa.

Like NYO-USA on Facebook at facebook.com/nyousa.

Follow NYO-USA on Instagram at instagram.com/nyo.usa.

Follow NYO-USA on Twitter at #NYOUSA.

See more from NYO-USA on YouTube at youtube.com/nyousa.

2013 BBC Proms photo by © Chris Lee.

 


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