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Andris Nelsons conducts an All-Bernstein Program with the Boston Ballet and featuring violinist Baiba Skride

Tanglewood

Koussevitzky Music Shed - Lenox, MA View Map

Andris Nelsons and the BSO present an all-Bernstein program, which begins with a fully-staged performance of the composer's ballet Fancy Free in a first-ever collaboration with the Boston Ballet. Bernstein's first ballet score and Robbins' first full-scale choreographic effort, Fancy Free catapulted both artists (who were both just 25) to stardom. In what would become his signature style, Robbins combined classical choreography with jazz and popular dance moves. Just months after Fancy Free was premiered at the old Metropolitan Opera House, its scenario had become the basis for Bernstein and Robbins' hit Broadway musical On the Town (performed July 7). Fancy Free is being presented here using Robbins' original choreography. The program continues with the Divertimento for Orchestra, composed for the BSO's centenary celebration in 1980, and concludes with the Serenade (after Plato's "Symposium"), for violin and orchestra, featuring soloist Baiba Skride.

Featured Performers

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 Boston Ballet Mikko Nissinen, artistic director
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Mikko Nissinen became Artistic Director of Boston Ballet and Boston Ballet School in 2001. Born in Helsinki, Finland, Nissinen began his dance training at age ten with The Finnish National Ballet School, and launched his professional dance career at age 15 with The Finnish National Ballet. In 1978, he won First Prize at The National Ballet Competition in Kuopio, Finland. He continued his studies at The Kirov Ballet School for one year. Nissinen went on to dance with The Finnish National Ballet, Dutch National Ballet, Basel Ballet and a decade with San Francisco Ballet as a principal dancer. During Nissinen's performance career his vast repertoire ranged from classical to contemporary works. As a guest artist, he danced with many different companies and partners and at numerous international galas.
 
Nissinen directed the Marin Ballet in San Rafael, California from 1996-1998, and Alberta Ballet, in Calgary, Canada from 1998-2001, also serving as Alberta Ballet's Executive Director from 1999-2000. Under Nissinen's leadership, Alberta Ballet's global visibility, national stature, performance schedule and touring were increased.
 
As Artistic Director of Boston Ballet, Nissinen has defined the Company's image, cultivating a compelling and dynamic collection of classical, neo-classical and contemporary repertoire, ranging from such full length classical ballets as Petipa's  The Sleeping Beauty, Clerc's  La Bayadère,   Nureyev's  Don Quixote, Bournonville's  La Sylphide, Cranko's  Onegin, and Ashton's  Cinderella, to masterworks by George Balanchine, to new works and world premieres by some of the finest contemporary choreographers including Alexander Ekman, William Forsythe, Jiří Kylián, Wayne McGregor, Peter Martins, Mark Morris and Christopher Wheeldon. In 2005 Nissinen appointed Jorma Elo as Resident Choreographer, who has since created a distinct identity for the Company, with many world premieres unique to Boston Ballet. Firmly committed to developing the art form and the future of dance, Nissinen actively promotes progressive new work and creations, commissioning emerging choreographers such as Helen Pickett and Jose Martinez. Nissinen's own choreography includes productions of  Swan Lake  and an award winning The Nutcracker. This three-part balance of Boston Ballet's repertoire has established the Company as one of the leading ballet organizations in America, acclaimed for its excellence, artistry and versatility
 
Audiences and critics alike have noted the Company's remarkable development under Nissinen's regime;  The New York Times  stated "Boston Ballet has come a vast distance. Its dancers are striking by national and international standards" and  The Boston Globe called Boston Ballet's transformation one of the "biggest arts stories of the decade".
           
Commencing in the winter 2008, for a year and a half, Nissinen served as Executive Director of Boston Ballet, during which time he provided full organizational leadership, initiated a major redesign of the organization's image, branding and website, and facilitated the Company's move to its permanent performance home, The Boston Opera House.  Under his direction, Boston Ballet has toured nationally and internationally for the first time in 16 years, to Spain, Korea, Canada, Finland, London England, Washington D.C and New York City.
 
Additionally, Nissinen heads Boston Ballet School, the largest ballet school in North America, which annually enrolls over 5,000 students in its recreational and pre-professional programs in three studio locations. He also overseers Boston Ballet's Education and Community Outreach Initiatives, which serve over 4,000 children and youth who participate in the nationally-recognized and acclaimed programs: Citydance, Adaptive Dance and ECI On Location.

His broad knowledge of dance, its history, and arts organization business leadership makes him a popular presenter at conferences including Harvard University, Harvard Business School and Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He was a fellow at the 2002 Executive Program for Nonprofit Leaders in the Arts at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. He has juried the Prix de Lausanne, Benois de la Danse, Japan Grand Prix, the Helsinki International Ballet Competition and the New York International Ballet Competition. He served as Jury President of the Boston International Ballet Competition. He is a member of the Artistic Committee for the New York Choreographic Institute, an advisory board member of The Albert Schweitzer Fellowship and the recipient of the Finlandia Foundation's 2008 Arts and Letters Award, the 2007 United Nations Association of Greater Boston Leadership Award, and Boston's Guide for the Arts 2009 Ambassador for the Arts Award. Nissinen is a dual Finnish and American citizen.

Boston Ballet Mikko Nissinen, artistic director
Baiba Skride, violin
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Baiba Skride's natural approach to her music-making has endeared her to some of today's most important conductors and orchestras worldwide. She is consistently invited for her refreshing interpretations, her sensitivity and delight in the music. The list of prestigious orchestras with whom she has worked include the Berlin Philharmonic, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Sinfonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Orchestre de Paris, London Philharmonic, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, Sydney Symphony and NHK Symphony. Notable conductors she collaborates with include Christoph Eschenbach, Paavo and Neeme Järvi, Andris Nelsons, Sakari Oramo, Vasily Petrenko, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Jukka Pekka Saraste and John Storgårds.

European highlights in 2015/16 include her return to Berlin Philharmonic with Andris Nelsons playing Shostakovich violin concerto No.1 and her debut with the Concertgebouw Orkest Amsterdam with Britten's violin concerto. Skride is Artist in Residence with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, with which she gives concerto and chamber music performances. She returns to Stockholm, Oslo and Helsinki Philharmonic, Iceland Symphony, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Royal Scottish National, Zurich Opera Orchestra and Hamburger Philharmoniker.

After her return to Boston Symphony with Gubaidulina's Offertorium last November, she was invited for a concerto and chamber music performance at Tanglewood Music Festival 2015 with Christian Zacharias. This is followed by her highly anticipated debuts with New York Philharmonic and Eschenbach playing Bartok violin concerto No.2, with National Symphony of Washington and Toronto Symphony. She returns to the orchestras of Seattle, Detroit and Naples.

Earlier in 2015/16 Skride performs with Helsinki Philharmonic and Storgards at the Palacio des Bellas Arte in Mexico, before she gives her debuts with the Orquestra Sinfônica do Estado de Sao Paulo and Filharmonica de Minas Gerais. She crosses the Hemispheres again for a tour with the New Zealand Symphony. In Asia she returns to Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra.

Chamber music highlights include performances at the Concertgebouw and Wigmore in duo recitals with her sister, pianist Lauma Skride. They will be joined by Daniel Müller-Schott for trio performances including the Schleswig-Holstein Musikfestival and in Bonn. Other partnerships this season include her trio with Sol Gabetta and Bertrand Chamayou.

In August 2015 Skride releases her fifth disc for Orfeo, featuring the Nielsen and Sibelius concertos and 2 Serenades with Tampere Philharmonic/ Santtu-Matias Rouvali. The preceding CD with the Szymanowski concertos with Oslo Philharmonic/Petrenko and Mythes with Lauma Skride received the Award of the German Record Critics and was nominated for the BBC Music Magazine Award. Earlier recordings include a Schumann CD with Danish National Symphony/ Storgårds, a Stravinsky and Martin concerto CD with BBC National Orchestra of Wales /Fischer, a Brahms box with Stockholm Philharmonic/ Oramo, a Tchaikovsky CD with CBSO/ Nelsons.

Skride was born into a musical Latvian family in Riga where she began her studies, transferring in 1995 to the Conservatory of Music and Theatre in Rostock. In 2001 she won the 1st prize of the Queen Elisabeth Competition. Since November 2010 Skride plays the Stradivarius ''Ex Baron Feilitzsch'' violin (1734), which is generously on loan to her from Gidon Kremer.

Baiba Skride, violin
Program Notes Audio
BERNSTEIN - Fancy Free
Fully staged production (27 min)
BERNSTEIN - Divertimento for Orchestra (16 min)
BERNSTEIN - Serenade (after Plato’s Symposium) for violin and orchestra (32 min)