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Tanglewood Gala
Boston Symphony Orchestra
Andris Nelsons conducts Verdi's Requiem featuring soprano Kristine Opolais

Tanglewood

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Featured Performers & Ensembles

Andris Nelsons, conductor
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The 2018-19 season is Andris Nelsons’ fifth as the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s Ray and Maria Stata Music Director. Named Musical America’s 2018 Artist of the Year, Mr. Nelsons will lead fourteen of the BSO’s twenty-six subscription programs in 2018-19, ranging from orchestral works by Haydn, Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, Stravinsky, and Copland to concerto collaborations with acclaimed soloists, as well as world and American premieres of pieces newly commissioned by the BSO from Thomas Adès, Sebastian Currier, Andris Dzenītis, and Mark-Anthony Turnage; the continuation of his complete Shostakovich symphony cycle with the orchestra, and concert performances of Puccini’s one-act opera Suor Angelica. In summer 2015, following his first season as music director, Andris Nelsons’ contract with the BSO was extended through the 2021-22 season. In November 2017, he and the orchestra toured Japan together for the first time. In February 2018, he became Gewandhauskapellmeister of the Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, in which capacity he brings both orchestras together for a unique multi-dimensional alliance. Immediately following the 2018 Tanglewood season, Maestro Nelsons and the BSO made their third European tour together, playing concerts in London, Hamburg, Berlin, Leipzig, Vienna, Lucerne, Paris, and Amsterdam. Their first European tour, following the 2015 Tanglewood season, took them to major European capitals and the Lucerne, Salzburg, and Grafenegg festivals; the second, in May 2016, took them to eight cities in Germany, Austria, and Luxembourg.

The fifteenth music director in the history of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Andris Nelsons made his BSO debut at Carnegie Hall in March 2011, his Tanglewood debut in July 2012, and his BSO subscription series debut in January 2013. His recordings with the BSO, all made live in concert at Symphony Hall, include the complete Brahms symphonies on BSO Classics; Grammy-winning recordings on Deutsche Grammophon of Shostakovich’s symphonies 5, 8, 9, and 10, the initial releases in a complete Shostakovich symphony cycle for that label; and a new two-disc set pairing Shostakovich’s symphonies 4 and 11, The Year 1905. Under an exclusive contract with Deutsche Grammophon, Andris Nelsons is also recording the complete Bruckner symphonies with the Gewandhausorchester Leipzig and the complete Beethoven symphonies with the Vienna Philharmonic.

The 2018-19 season is Maestro Nelsons’ final season as artist-in-residence at the Konzerthaus Dortmund and marks his first season as artist-in-residence at Hamburg’s Elbphilharmonie. In addition, he continues his regular collaborations with the Vienna Philharmonic and Berlin Philharmonic. Throughout his career, he has also established regular collaborations with Amsterdam’s Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, and the Philharmonia Orchestra, and has been a regular guest at the Bayreuth Festival and the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden.

Born in Riga in 1978 into a family of musicians, Andris Nelsons began his career as a trumpeter in the Latvian National Opera Orchestra before studying conducting. He was music director of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra from 2008 to 2015, principal conductor of the Nordwestdeutsche Philharmonie in Herford, Germany, from 2006 to 2009, and music director of Latvian National Opera from 2003 to 2007.

 

Andris Nelsons, conductor Kristine Opolais, soprano
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Kristine Opolais is one of the most sought after sopranos on the international scene today, with a firmly established reputation amongst the world’s pre-eminent singing actresses, combining lustrous tone and fierce dramatic intensity. Opolais appears at the Metropolitan Opera New York, Wiener Staatsoper, Deutsche Staatsoper Berlin, Bayerische Staatsoper, Teatro alla Scala, Opernhaus Zürich and Royal Opera House Covent Garden. She is working with such conductors as Daniel Barenboim, Sir Antonio Pappano, Sir Simon Rattle, Sir Mark Elder, Daniel Harding, Andris Nelsons, Fabio Luisi, Kirill Petrenko and Semyon Bychkov.

Kristine Opolais is one of the most sought after sopranos on the international scene today, with a firmly established reputation amongst the world’s pre-eminent singing actresses, combining lustrous tone and fierce dramatic intensity. Opolais appears at the Metropolitan Opera New York, Wiener Staatsoper, Deutsche Staatsoper Berlin, Bayerische Staatsoper, Teatro alla Scala, Opernhaus Zürich and Royal Opera House Covent Garden. She is working with such conductors as Daniel Barenboim, Sir Antonio Pappano, Sir Simon Rattle, Sir Mark Elder, Daniel Harding, Andris Nelsons, Fabio Luisi, Kirill Petrenko and Semyon Bychkov.

Kristine Opolais is known for notable collaborations with the Metropolitan Opera, her performances frequently broadcast in HD worldwide. In Autumn 2018 Opolais returns to the Met to sing “Suor Angelica”, a role she has recorded for label ‘Orfeo’ but until this point she has not sung on stage. Previously, she starred as the title role in Zimmerman’s 2017 production of “Rusalka”, and received critical praise for her “vocally lustrous and achingly vulnerable performance” (New York Times). Opolais maintains a strong relationship with the Met since her debut as Magda in “La Rondine”. Famously, in 2014 she made history at the Met, with two role debuts in 18 hours. She gave a renowned performance in “Butterfly”, only to step in for a matinee of “La boheme” the next day, which was cinema broadcast worldwide.

In the 2018/19 season Opolais continues her strong collaboration with the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, returning to the House as Tosca. In London, Opolais has particularly cemented her title as “the leading Puccini Soprano of today” (The Telegraph), appearing in Kent’s 2014 production as Manon Lescaut, as well as starring as Cio-Cio San in „Madama Butterfly“. This season Opolais also returns to the Wiener Staatsoper for further signature performances of “Tosca” and makes her debut at the Staatsoper Hamburg for two special performances of “Manon Lescaut” as part of Hamburg’s notable Italian Opera Festival and also tours to Japan, her Japanese debut, in “Manon Lescaut” with the Teatro dell’Opera di Roma. Opolais also has a significant relationship with the Bayerische Staatsoper, which started in 2010 when she made her acclaimed debut as Rusalka in Kušej’s production, which she has been invited back numerous times to perform. Since this time Opolais has appeared in titles including “Manon Lescaut”, “Madama Butterfly”, Tatjana in “Onegin” and Margherita in “Mefistofele”.

Opolais’ solo concert and recital appearances, for which she is highly in demand, include performances at the Salzburg Festival, BBC Proms, George Enescu, Turku and Tanglewood Festivals, the Vienna Musikverein, Baden-Baden Festspielhaus, Royal Opera House Muscat, Royal Concertgebouw and Carnegie Hall, to name but a few. Opolais has appeared with orchestras including the Berliner Philharmoniker, Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, with whom she tours this season, the Concertgebouworkest, Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks and Filarmonica della Scala.

Opolais’ most recent opera recording was released in Autumn 2017, a DVD of “Tosca”, from Himmelmann’s production in Baden-Baden, with the Berliner Philharmoniker, conducted by Sir Simon Rattle.

 

Kristine Opolais, soprano
Oksana Volkova, mezzo-soprano Oksana Volkova, mezzo-soprano Jonathan Tetelman, tenor
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The New York Times declares Jonathan Tetelman is “a total star.” He is quickly becoming one of the most sought-after rising tenors in the world.  In the 2018/19 season he joins both Komische Oper Berlin and English National Opera as Rodolfo in La bohème. He also sings his first performances of Cavaradossi in Tosca with Festival d’Aix-en-Provence, Werther with Opera del Teatro Solis in Uruguay, and Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly with Virginia Opera. In the 2017/18 season Mr. Tetelman makes his debut at the Tanglewood Music Festival as Rodolfo in La bohème with the Boston Symphony Orchestra and Maestro Andris Nelsons, and joins soprano Nadine Sierra in concert at Festival Napa Valley. He rounds up a busy summer as Duca in Rigoletto with Berkshire Opera festival. Earlier this season the tenor sang Marco in Chadwick and Barnet’s Tobasco with New Orleans Opera, a gala performance as Don Jose in Carmen at the French Embassy in Washington, D.C., both Dvorak’s Requiem and Verdi’s Requiem with the Greenwich Village Orchestra and St. George’s Choral Society, and joined the Metropolitan Opera for their new production of Norma.

Other recent performances include Rodolfo in La bohème with the Fujian Grand Theatre in China, Verdi’s Requiem with the Milan Festival Orchestra, Elgar’s Dream of Gerontius with the Orchestra Now, Mozart’s Coronation Mass in his Carnegie Hall debut with the New England Symphonic Ensemble, and Dvorak’s Stabat Mater with the St. Goerge’s Choral Society. Other recent roles for Mr. Tetelman include Alfredo in La Traviata, Eisenstein in Die Fledermaus, and Freddy Eynsford-Hill in My Fair Lady.

He won Second Place in the 2018 New York International Vocal competition, and First Prize in the 2016 New York Lyric Opera Competition, from which Mr. Tetelman performed concerts at both Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall.  The tenor was also a 2016 prize-winning finalist in the Mildred Miller (Opera Theater of Pittsburgh) Competition, and a semi-finalist in both the Giulio Gari International Vocal Competition and the Gerda Lissner International Vocal Competition.

Mr. Tetelman completed the graduate performance studies program at The New School of Music, Mannes College and earned his undergraduate degree from Manhattan School of Music.   He was born in Castro, Chile and grew up in central New Jersey.

Jonathan Tetelman, tenor
Ryan Speedo Green, bass-baritone
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Bass-Baritone Ryan Speedo Green, a native of Suffolk, Virginia, recently completed the Lindemann Young Artist Development Program at the Metropolitan Opera. Praised by Anthony Tommasini for his “robust voice,” Ryan returns to the Wiener Staatsoper as an ensemble member in the 2015 – 2016 season where he sings Basilio in Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Rochefort in Anna Bolena, Angelotti in Tosca, Hans in Undine, and 5th Jew in Salome, among other assignments. Ryan will also sing Ferrando in Il Trovatore with Opera de Lille’s traveling production as well as his debut with the Salzburg Festival as the Third King in Die Liebe der Danae. Next season will see Ryan’s return to the Met as Colline in the iconic Zeffirelli production of La Boheme as well as his house and role debut at Houston Grand Opera as Osmin in the James Robinson production of Die Entführung aus dem Serail.

Ryan joined the Wiener Staatsoper as an ensemble member in the 2014 – 2015 season and was featured as Sparafucile in a new production of Rigoletto, as well as Basilio in Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Fouquier Tinville in Andrea Chénier, the Monk in Don Carlo, the Pope in Lady Macbeth of Mzensk, Angelotti inTosca, and the King in Aida. He also made a return to the Metropolitan Opera as Rambo in the premier ofTheDeath of Klinghofferconducted by David Robertson.

Ryan made his Metropolitan Opera stage debut as a Lindemann Young Artist, singing the Mandarin inTurandot, and went on to sing the Second Knight in a new production of Parsifal, the Bonze in Madama Butterfly and the Jailer in Tosca. Additional operatic engagements include the Commendatore in Don Giovanni at The Juilliard School, Colline in La Bohème with Central City Opera, Don Magnifico in La Cenerentola as a resident artist with Opera Colorado, and Son Beau-Pere in a new production of Milhaud’s Le pauvre matelot and Zuniga in Carmen with the National Symphony Orchestra at Wolf Trap Opera.

Concert work includes his debut with the Boston Symphony Orchestra as Second Soldier in Salomeunder the baton of Andris Nelsons, a debut with the Philadelphia Orchestra singing Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, the bass solo in Verdi’s Requiem with Hartford Chorale, Mozart’s Coronation Mass with the Virginia Symphony, and Beethoven’s Symphony No.9 with the Florida Symphony and Norwalk Symphony Orchestras. Ryan was also a featured soloist in a celebration of song honoring Carlisle Floyd’s 85th Birthday with the Florida State University Department of Music, conducted by the composer.

In the fall of 2016, Little, Brown will publish Sing for Your Life, by New York Timesjournalist Daniel Bergner. The book tells the story of Ryan’s personal and artistic journey: from a trailer park in southeastern Virginia and from time spent in Virginia’s juvenile facility of last resort to the Met stage.

Honors and awards include National Grand Finals winner of the 2011 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, a 2014 George London Foundation Award, a 2014 Annenberg grant recipient, a 2014 Gerda Lissner Foundation First Prize winner, both the Richard and Sara Tucker Grants from the Richard Tucker Foundation, and a finalist in the Palm Beach Opera Competition. Mr. Green received his Master of Music degree from Florida State University and his Bachelor of Music degree from the Hartt School of Music.

 

Ryan Speedo Green, bass-baritone
Tanglewood Festival Chorus
Tanglewood Festival Chorus
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Tanglewood Festival Chorus
James Burton, BSO Choral Director and Conductor of the Tanglewood Festival Chorus
John Oliver (1939-2018), Founder

Originally formed under the joint sponsorship of Boston University and the Boston Symphony Orchestra, the all-volunteer Tanglewood Festival Chorus was established in 1970 by its founding conductor, the late John Oliver, who stepped down from his leadership position with the TFC at the end of the 2015 Tanglewood season. In February 2017, following appearances as guest chorus conductor at Symphony Hall and Tanglewood, and having prepared the chorus for that month’s BSO performances of Bach’s B minor Mass led by Andris Nelsons, the British-born James Burton was named the new Conductor of the Tanglewood Festival Chorus, also being appointed to the newly created position of BSO Ch

The Tanglewood Festival Chorus joins the BSO this season for performances of Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 (October 25-30), Bach’s Christmas Oratorio (November 29-December 1), Puccini’s Suor Angelica (February 21 and 22), and Dvořák’s Stabat Mater (February 28-March 2) all under Andris Nelsons, and Estévez’s Cantata Criolla (April 11-13) with guest conductor Gustavo Dudamel. Also in October, the TFC performed Maija Einfelde’s Lux aeterna with James Burton, BSO Choral Director and Conductor of the Tanglewood Festival Chorus, making his subscription-series conducting debut. Originally formed under the joint sponsorship of Boston University and the Boston Symphony Orchestra, the all-volunteer Tanglewood Festival Chorus was established in 1970 by its founding conductor, the late John Oliver, who stepped down from his leadership position with the TFC at the end of the 2015 Tanglewood season. In February 2017, following appearances as guest chorus conductor at Symphony Hall and Tanglewood, and having prepared the chorus for that month’s BSO performances of Bach’s B minor Massled by Andris Nelsons, James Burton was named the new Conductor of the Tanglewood Festival Chorus, also being appointed to the newly created position of BSO Choral Director. Mr. Burton occupies the Alan J. and Suzanne W. Dworsky Chair on the Boston Symphony Orchestra roster.

Though first established for performances at the BSO’s summer home, the Tanglewood Festival Chorus was soon playing a major role in the BSO’s subscription season as well as BSO concerts at Carnegie Hall; the ensemble now performs year-round with the Boston Symphony and Boston Pops. It has performed with the BSO on tour in Hong Kong and Japan, and on two European tours, also giving a cappella concerts of its own on those two occasions. The TFC made its debut in April 1970 at Symphony Hall, in a BSO performance of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with Leonard Bernstein conducting. Its first recording with the orchestra, Berlioz’s La Damnation de Faust with Seiji Ozawa, received a Grammy nomination for Best Choral Performance of 1975. The TFC has since made dozens of recordings with the BSO and Boston Pops, with Seiji Ozawa, Bernard Haitink, James Levine, Leonard Bernstein, Sir Colin Davis, Keith Lockhart, and John Williams. In August 2011, with John Oliver conducting and soloist Stephanie Blythe, the TFC gave the world premiere of Alan Smith’s An Unknown Sphere for mezzo-soprano and chorus, commissioned by the BSO for the ensemble’s 40th anniversary. Its most recent recordings on BSO Classics, all drawn from live performances, include a disc of a cappella music marking the TFC’s 40th anniversary; Ravel’s complete Daphnis et Chloé (a 2009 Grammy-winner for Best Orchestral Performance), Brahms’s German Requiem, and William Bolcom’s Eighth Symphony for chorus and orchestra (a BSO 125th Anniversary Commission). On July 4, 2018, the Tanglewood Festival Chorus joined Keith Lockhart for the “Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular” on the Charles River Esplanade.

Besides their work with the BSO, TFC members have also performed with Zubin Mehta and the Israel Philharmonic and in a Saito Kinen Festival production of Britten’s Peter Grimes under Seiji Ozawa in Japan. The ensemble had the honor of singing at Sen. Edward Kennedy’s funeral; has performed with the Boston Pops for the Boston Red Sox and Boston Celtics; and can be heard on the soundtracks of Clint Eastwood’s Mystic River, John Sayles’s Silver City, and Steven Spielberg’s Saving Private Ryan. TFC members regularly commute from the greater Boston area and beyond to sing with the chorus in Boston and at Tanglewood. For more information about the Tanglewood Festival Chorus and upcoming auditions, please visit www.bso.org/tfc.

 

 

James Burton
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James Burton was appointed Conductor of the Tanglewood Festival Chorus, and to the newly created position of BSO Choral Director, in February 2017. He made his BSO subscription-series conducting debut in October 2018, leading the Tanglewood Festival Chorus in Maija Einfelde’s Lux aeterna. Born in London, Mr. Burton holds a master’s degree in orchestral conducting from the Peabody Conservatory, where he studied with Frederik Prausnitz and Gustav Meier. He began his training at the Choir of Westminster Abbey, where he became head chorister, and was a choral scholar at St. John’s College, Cambridge. He has conducted concerts with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, the Hallé, the Orchestra of Scottish Opera, Royal Northern Sinfonia, BBC Concert Orchestra, and Manchester Camerata. He made his debut with the Boston Pops in December 2017 and returns to the Pops podium this coming December. He is a regular guest of the Orquestra Sinfónica Nacional of Mexico and returns this season to lead performances of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 in the Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico City. Opera credits include performances at English National Opera, English Touring Opera, Garsington Opera, and the Prague Summer Nights Festival, and he has served on the music staff of the Metropolitan Opera and Opéra de Paris. Mr. Burton’s extensive choral conducting has included guest invitations with professional choirs including the Gabrieli Consort, the Choir of the Enlightenment, Wrocław Philharmonic, and the BBC Singers, with whom he performed in the inaugural season of Dubai’s Opera House in 2017. From 2002 to 2009 he served as choral director at the Hallé Orchestra, where he was music director of the Hallé Choir and founding conductor of the Hallé Youth Choir, winning the Gramophone Choral Award in 2009. He was music director of Schola Cantorum of Oxford from 2002 to 2017. Mr. Burton is well known for his inspirational work with young musicians. In 2017 he was director of the National Youth Choir of Japan; he has recently conducted the Princeton University Glee Club, Yale Schola Cantorum, and University of Kentucky Symphony. In 2018 he founded the Boston Symphony Children’s Choir. Mr. Burton has given conducting master classes at the Royal Academy of Music in London and at the Tanglewood Music Center, and founded a scholarship for young conductors at Oxford. His growing composition portfolio contains works for commissioners including the National Portrait Gallery in London, the 2010 World Equestrian Games, the Choir of St. John’s College, Cambridge, and the Exon Festival, where he was composer-in-residence in 2015. In July 2019, Mr. Burton will conduct the Boston Symphony Children’s Choir and Boston Symphony Orchestra in the world premiere of his The Lost Words, as part of next summer’s gala Tanglewood on Parade concert. His works are published by Edition Peters. As BSO Choral Director and Conductor of the Tanglewood Festival Chorus, James Burton occupies the Alan J. and Suzanne W. Dworsky chair, endowed in perpetuity.

 

Program Notes Audio
VERDI - Requiem