BSO caps its 2016 Tanglewood Season with Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy”

An ecstatic Ode to Joy at Tanglewood.

An ecstatic Ode to Joy at Tanglewood.


Today at 2:30 p.m., Music Director Andris Nelsons led the Boston Symphony Orchestra in its final concert of the 2016 Tanglewood season, featuring the orchestra’s traditional season-closing performance of Beethoven’s overwhelming and uplifting Symphony No. 9, a work that never fails to inspire awe at the power of music. This was Maestro Nelsons’ first time leading the BSO in Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy” Symphony.

At the start of today’s Boston Symphony season-ending performance of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, BSO Music Director Andris Nelsons announced to the audience some details about his commitment to the 2017 Tanglewood season; he will spend four weeks and conduct ten concerts, his longest commitment to Tanglewood since becoming BSO Music Director in 2014.

Also announced today: Andris Nelsons increases his commitment to the 2017 Tanglewood season: 

“As we complete the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s season at Tanglewood with one of music’s most glorious masterpieces, Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, I am absolutely thrilled to announce that I will be spending four weeks and leading ten concerts during the 2017 Tanglewood season, beginning with the BSO’s opening night program of Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 on July 7.  In addition to conducting the traditional season-ending  Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony again in 2017 and a program with the talented young musicians of the Tanglewood Music Center, I am also very excited to announce that I will be leading two opera programs, one of them a complete concert performance of a major work. Though we are still in the process of making final programming decisions for the 2017 Tanglewood season, we look forward to sharing the full season announcement about these and other programs this fall.

Tanglewood’s rich 79-year tradition—highlighted each summer by so many significant musicians of the 20th and 21st centuries—is breathtaking in its scope and impact, thanks to its founder Serge Koussevitzky. This tradition, along with incredibly loyal patrons and donors—all so fervently dedicated to their music festival, and the exquisite physical beauty of the grounds and surrounding Berkshire Hills—most definitely adds up to an extraordinary embarrassment of riches.  I feel so blessed to be part of such a passionate musical community, all of whom are welcome members of the BSO’s wonderful extended family!”

Joining Mr. Nelsons and the orchestra this afternoon for Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony were vocal soloists soprano Rachel Willis-Sørensen (BSO and Tanglewood debut), mezzo-soprano Ruxandra Donose(Tanglewood debut), tenor Joseph Kaiser, bass Wilhelm Schwinghammer (BSO and Tangelwood debut), and the beloved Tanglewood Festival Chorus. The program opened with Copland’s Quiet City, featuring BSO principals Thomas Rolfs on trumpet and Robert Sheena on English horn.

Following today’s performance of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, the Tanglewood season concludes with three performances leading into Labor Day Weekend: Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me!, NPR’s oddly informative weekly hour-long news quiz program, live at Tanglewood on  Thursday, September 1; The B-52s with the Boston Popson Friday, September 2; and Keith Lockhart and the Boston Pops Swing Orchestra performing “Dancing Under the Stars,” a festive, toe-tapping performance, on Saturday, September 3.

One of the premier summer music festivals in the world and the famed summer home of the Boston Symphony Orchestra since 1937, Tanglewood is located in the beautiful Berkshire Hills between Stockbridge and Lenox, Massachusetts. The 2016 Tanglewood season,  June 17-September 3, features concerts by the Boston Symphony, Boston Pops, visiting ensembles, and many of the greatest classical musicians of our time; recital and chamber music concerts in the intimate setting of Ozawa Hall; programs highlighting the young musicians of the Tanglewood Music Center, the BSO’s prestigious summer music academy; and performances by some of today’s leading popular artists. For complete details about the 2016 Tanglewood season, please visit


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