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Bramwell Tovey conducts Barber, Riley and Elgar featuring organist Cameron Carpenter

Boston Symphony Orchestra

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English conductor Bramwell Tovey is joined by virtuoso American organist Cameron Carpenter, who makes his BSO subscription series debut in a work written for him, At the Royal Majestic, by the innovative American composer Terry Riley, a founding father of musical minimalism. Himself an organist, Riley created this eclectic large-scale concerto "shifting, as its title suggests, from sounds reminiscent of the Mighty Wurlitzer housed in the grand movie palaces, to fragments of Calliope, Baroque Chorales, occasional craggy dissonance of clashing pipes, and boogie." To open the concert, Carpenter is soloist in Samuel Barber's 1960 organ-and-orchestra work Toccata Festiva, by turns exuberant and lyrical. The English composer Edward Elgar's tour-de-force of orchestral and expressive imagination, the Enigma Variations, is a series of widely varied portraits of his friends achieved via transformations of a common musical theme.

Featured Performers

Cameron Carpenter, organ
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Cameron Carpenter is having a ball smashing the stereotypes of organists and organ music, and all the while generating international acclaim and controversy unprecedented in his field. Cameron's repertoire - from the complete works of J. S. Bach to film scores, his original compositions and hundreds of transcriptions and arrangements - is probably the largest and most diverse of any organist. He is the first 'concert organist' in history to prefer the digital organ to the pipe organ, and to champion it as the future of the instrument.

In 2014, Cameron launched his International Touring Organ - a monumental cross-genre digital organ built by Marshall & Ogletree to his own design - in extensive tours in Europe and the USA. His Sony Music debut album If You Could Read My Mind entered Billboard's Traditional Classical chart at No. 1 on its US release. 

A former child prodigy, Cameron Carpenter trained at the American Boychoir School, the North Carolina School of the Arts and has two degrees from The Juilliard School. He holds the 2012 Leonard Bernstein Award, is the first solo organist ever nominated for a GRAMMY┬« Award for a solo album, and has appeared with many of the great orchestras around the world; he has spoken and debated at think tanks and conferences including TED, IdeaCity, The Entertainment Gathering, and many more. For more information please visit <www.cameroncarpenter.com>.

Cameron Carpenter, organ
Program Notes Audio
BARBER - Toccata Festiva (13 min)
Terry RILEY - At the Royal Majestic, for organ and orchestra (30 min)
ELGAR - Enigma Variations (33 min)
Full Program Notes - Concert Preview
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