Performances Continue at Carnegie Hall, Jazz at Lincoln Center, Three Programs at the Fisher Center at Bard College, and Three Free Concerts in Manhattan and Beyond

U.S. Premiere of Tan Dun’s Cello Concerto: Intercourse of Fire and Water
Guest Artists to Include Conductor Tan Dun, Pianist Orion Weiss, Cellist Jing Zhao, Tenor Eric Carey, and Baritone Michael Anthony McGee

September 30 – December 21, 2018

Annandale-on-Hudson, New York, September 6, 2018 – The Orchestra Now (TŌN) will launch its 2018 fall season with two concerts in its popular Sight & Sound series at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The opening performance on September 30 is Mahler and the Feminine Ideal, juxtaposing the works of Klimt, Schiele, and Picasso with Mahler’s Kindertotenlier sung by baritone Michael Anthony McGee. On November 18, the second program features Avery Fisher Career Grant winner pianist Orion Weiss in an afternoon of Chopin, Delacroix, and the Romantic Impulse.

A notable highlight will be the November 11 opening of TŌN’s Rose Theater series at Jazz at Lincoln Center, when the Orchestra presents guest conductor Tan Dun leading the U.S. premiere of his Cello Concerto: Intercourse of Fire and Water alongside works by Smetana and Respighi. In time for the holidays, associate conductor James Bagwell will conduct two free concerts, one in Manhattan at Peter Norton Symphony Space with tenor Eric Carey on December 2 and the other at Hudson Hall in upstate New York on December 21. Resident conductor Zachary Schwartzman will lead the Orchestra in a third free concert at Olin Hall at Bard College on December 20. TŌN also begins its six-concert season in residence at Bard College’s Fisher Center with three different programs led by Leon Botstein on October 6-7, November 3-4, and December 12. The first concert of the season at Carnegie Hall will juxtapose two rarely performed symphonies from Russian composers Rimsky-Korsakov and Glière.    

All concerts are illustrated with brief remarks by TŌN’s inspiring musicians, many of whom will be on hand to speak with audience members during intermissions.

Details of the Orchestra’s full season are available here.

The Grace Rainey Rogers Auditorium
TŌN opens its frequently sold-out Sight & Sound series at The Metropolitan Museum of Art with two fall concerts. Both are conducted by music historian Leon Botstein and include discussion accompanied by musical excerpts and on-screen artworks, followed by a full performance and audience Q&A.

Mahler & The Feminine Ideal
Sunday, September 30, 2018 at 2 pm
Leon Botstein, conductor
Michael Anthony McGee, baritone
Mahler’s Kindertotenlieder and the artwork of Klimt, Schiele, and Picasso

Like many of his time, Gustav Mahler was obsessed with the image of femininity and its reality. No generation of artists and thinkers, including Freud, Klimt, and Arthur Schniztler, spent more time concerned with the ethics and aesthetics of gender and sexuality. Mahler’s Kindertotenlieder evokes the composer’s complicated relationship with the idealization of the family and the reality of his life with his infamous wife, Alma.

Presented in conjunction with the exhibition Obsession: Nudes by Klimt, Schiele, and Picasso from the Scofield Thayer Collection, on view at The Met Breuer through October 7, 2018.

Chopin, Delacroix & The Romantic Impulse
Sunday, November 18, 2018 at 2 pm
Leon Botstein, conductor
Orion Weiss, piano
Chopin’s Variations on “Là ci darem la mano,” Berlioz’s Waverley Overture, and the artwork of Delacroix

The French Romantic painter Eugène Delacroix, a contemporary of Berlioz, was passionate about music. In his later years he became close to Chopin and developed a fascination with Mozart. The romantic impulse embodied in their art can be seen through the lens of two profoundly different but equally innovative approaches to beauty and the sublime.

Presented in conjunction with the exhibition Delacroix, on view at The Met Fifth Avenue September 17, 2018–January 6, 2019.

Tickets $30–$50, 3-concert series from $75, Bring the Kids for $1. All tickets include museum admission. Tickets available online at or, by calling The Met at 212.570.3949, or in person at The Great Hall Box Office at The Metropolitan Museum of Art at 5th Ave and 82nd St.

The next concert in the Sight & Sound series is Abstraction in Music and Art on May 19, 2019.

TŌN opens its Rose Theater series at Jazz at Lincoln Center on November 11 with composer Tan Dun leading the U.S. premiere of his Cello Concerto: Intercourse of Fire and Water, in addition to Smetana’s Vltava (The Moldau) and Respighi’s Pines of Rome. This program also includes another Tan Dun work, Passacaglia: Secret of Wind and Birds, commissioned by Carnegie Hall in 2015 for the National Youth Orchestra of the United States. The music draws on forms from East and West, ancient and modern, and incorporates birdsong produced by smartphone.

Tan Dun & Respighi’s Pines of Rome
Sunday, November 11, 2018 at 3 pm
Tan Dun, conductor
Jing Zhao, cello
Smetana: Vltava (The Moldau) from Má Vlast (My Country)
Tan Dun: Cello Concerto: Intercourse of Fire and Water (U.S. Premiere)
Tan Dun: Passacaglia: Secret of Wind and Birds
Respighi: Pines of Rome

Tickets $25–$50. Tickets available online at or, by calling CenterCharge at 212.721.6500, or in person at the Jazz at Lincoln Center box office on the ground floor of the Time Warner Center at Broadway and 60th St.

The next TŌN at Rose Theater performance takes place on March 26, 2019 with guest conductor Fabio Luisi leading Brahms’ Symphony No. 2.

CARNEGIE HALL SERIES, Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage
The Orchestra Now returns to Carnegie Hall with Leon Botstein for a season showcasing under-performed composers and masterworks. The opening program focuses on Russian composers Rimsky-Korsakov and Glière. This concert will first be performed at the Fisher Center at Bard College on December 12.

Russian Evolution: From Rimsky-Korsakov to Glière
Friday, December 14, 2018 at 7:30 pm
Leon Botstein, conductor
Rimsky-Korsakov: Symphony No. 1
Reinhold Glière: Symphony No. 3, Ilya Muromets

Rimsky-Korsakov wrote much of his first symphony while serving in the Russian navy, and actually appeared onstage in uniform at the work’s 1865 premiere. Many Russian folk and oriental melodies can be heard in the piece, and nationalists dubbed it the “First Russian Symphony.” Reinhold Glière’s expansive Symphony No. 3, Ilya Muromets, is based on the life of one of Russia’s most famous mythical heroes. Highly respected for his values, he is the only such character to have been canonized by Russia’s Orthodox Church. Glière was a true believer in the pre-revolutionary national Russian school and hence, his embrace of traditional forms made him a favorite of Soviet authorities.

Tickets $25–$60. Tickets available online at or, by calling CarnegieCharge at 212.247.7800, or in person at the Carnegie Hall box office at 57th and Seventh.

The next TŌN concert at Carnegie Hall is De Profundis: Out of the Depths on May 2, 2019, including U.S. premieres by Joachim Raff and Lera Auerbach.

The first three of six programs in The Orchestra Now’s 2018–19 residency at Bard College’s Fisher Center—all conducted by music director Leon Botstein—will begin with a concert featuring Brahms’ Violin Concerto played by Zhen Liu, a winner of the 2017 Bard College Conservatory Concerto Competition (October 6-7).  The fall series continues with Copland’s Lincoln Portrait along with works by Ives, Carter, and Piston (November 3-4); and Russian Evolution: From Rimsky Korsakov to Gliére (December 12).

Brahms & England
Saturday, October 6, 2018 at 8 pm
Sunday, October 7, 2018 at 2 pm
Leon Botstein, conductor
Zhen Liu, violin
Joseph Joachim: Hamlet Overture
Brahms: Violin Concerto
Elgar: Symphony No. 1

Copland’s Lincoln Portrait
Saturday, November 3, 2018 at 8 pm
Sunday, November 4, 2018 at 2 pm
Leon Botstein, conductor
Ives: Decoration Day from the Holidays Symphony
Carter: Concerto for Orchestra
Piston: Symphony No. 2
Copland: Lincoln Portrait

Russian Evolution: From Rimsky-Korsakov to Glière
Wednesday, December 12, 2018 at 7 pm
Leon Botstein, conductor
Rimsky-Korsakov: Symphony No. 1
Reinhold Glière: Symphony No. 3, Ilya Muromets
This concert will be repeated at Carnegie Hall on December 14.

Tickets $25–$35, 5-concert packages $120, 3- or 4-concert packages from $63.75. Tickets available online at or,  by calling the box office at 845.758.7900, or in person at the Fisher Center box office in the lobby of Sosnoff Theater.

The next Fisher Center concert is The Romantic Hero on February 9-10.

TŌN’s popular series of free concerts at multiple venues in and around New York City will offer two performances led by associate conductor James Bagwell and one led by resident conductor Zachary Schwartzman during the holiday season: the first with tenor Eric Carey in a performance of Britten’s song cycle Les Illuminations and works by Dvořák’s and Chabrier (December 2); a second program showcasing Mozart’s Symphony No. 25 (December 20), and  the final concert featuring Corelli’s Christmas Concerto with works by Mozart and Beethoven (December 21).

Dvořák’s Sixth Symphony
Sunday, December 2, 2018 at 4 pm at Peter Norton Symphony Space
James Bagwell, conductor
Eric Carey, tenor
Emmanuel Chabrier: España
Britten: Les illuminations
Dvořák: Symphony No. 6

Mozart’s Symphony No. 25
Thursday, December 20, 2018 at 7:30 pm at Olin Hall at Bard College
Luigi Cherubini: Médée Overture
Mozart: Symphony No. 25
Beethoven: Incidental Music to Egmont

Beethoven & Mozart
Friday, December 21, 2018 at 7 pm at Hudson Hall in Hudson, New York
James Bagwell, conductor
Corelli: Christmas Concerto
Mozart: Sinfonia concertante
Beethoven: Symphony No. 2

Tickets: These concerts are FREE. Advance RSVP is suggested. For concerts at Symphony Space, RSVPs can be made at or, or by calling the Symphony Space box office at 212.864.5400. For concerts at Hudson Hall, RSVPs can be made at or, or by calling the Hudson Hall box office at 518.822.1438. No RSVP is necessary for concerts at Olin Hall.

The next free concert is Pictures at an Exhibition with resident conductor Zachary Schwartzman at Peter Norton Symphony Space in Manhattan on January 27, 2019.

The Orchestra Now
The Orchestra Now (TŌN) is a group of over 70 vibrant young musicians from 15 different countries around the globe: the United States, Bulgaria, China, France, Hungary, Korea, Malaysia, Mongolia, Peru, Poland, Spain, Taiwan, the United Kingdom, Ukraine, and Venezuela. All share a mission to make orchestral music relevant to 21st-century audiences. Hand-picked from hundreds of applicants from the world’s leading conservatories—including The Juilliard School, Shanghai Conservatory of Music, Royal Conservatory of Brussels, and the Curtis Institute of Music—the members of TŌN are not only rousing audiences with their critically acclaimed performances, but also enlightening curious minds by presenting on-stage introductions and demonstrations at concerts, offering program notes written from the musicians’ perspective, and connecting with patrons through one-on-one discussions during intermissions. To date, members of TŌN have earned positions with orchestras across the United States and in Europe. Some play regularly with the New York Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra, and the Baltimore Symphony.

Conductor, educator, and music historian Leon Botstein founded TŌN in 2015 as a master’s degree program at Bard College, where he also serves as president. The Orchestra is in residence at Bard’s Richard B. Fisher Center for the Performing Arts, offering multiple concerts there each season as well as participating in the annual Bard Music Festival. The Orchestra also performs numerous concert series at major venues in New York, including Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, and The Metropolitan Museum of Art, as well as a schedule of free performances across New York City boroughs. TŌN has collaborated with many distinguished conductors, including Fabio Luisi, Neeme Järvi, Gerard Schwarz, and JoAnn Falletta.

For upcoming activities and more detailed information about the musicians, visit

Leon Botstein
Leon Botstein brings a renowned career as both a conductor and educator to his role as music director of The Orchestra Now. He has been music director of the American Symphony Orchestra since 1992, artistic co-director of Bard SummerScape and the Bard Music Festival since their creation, and president of Bard College since 1975. He was the music director of the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra from 2003–2011 and is now conductor laureate. This year he has assumed artistic directorship of Campus Grafenegg and Grafenegg Academy in Austria. Mr. Botstein is also a frequent guest conductor with orchestras around the globe, has made numerous recordings, and is a prolific author and music historian. He is the editor of the prestigious The Musical Quarterly and has received many honors for his contributions to music. More info online at

Press Contacts:
Pascal Nadon
Pascal Nadon Communications
Phone: 646.234.7088

Mark Primoff
Associate Vice President of Communications
Bard College
Phone: 845.758.7412

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