2019 Tanglewood Season Highlights

2019 Tanglewood Season Logo

One of the premier summer music festivals in the world and summer home of the Boston Symphony Orchestra since 1937, Tanglewood is located in the beautiful Berkshire Hills, between Stockbridge and Lenox, Massachusetts. 

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2019 Tanglewood Season Highlights

BSO Music Director Andris Nelsons chats with Brian Bell about some of the highlights of the 2019 Tanglewood season.


In the 2019 Tanglewood season, BSO Music Director Andris Nelsons leads nine Boston Symphony concerts in July, featuring Emanuel Ax on Opening Night (7/5), Anne-Sophie Mutter in a 90th-birthday tribute to Sir André Previn (7/6), the Tanglewood debut of Polish- Canadian pianist Jan Lisiecki (7/12), and the BSO-commissioned world premiere, with soprano Renée Fleming, Tanglewood’s 2019 Koussevitzky Artist, and baritone Rod Gilfry, of Kevin Puts’ The Brightness of Light, inspired by letters of the iconic American artist Georgia O’Keeffe (7/20). Maestro Nelsons’ BSO concerts also feature solo appearances by Håkan Hardenberger (7/14), Gautier Capuçon (7/19), Jean-Yves Thibaudet (7/21), and Paul Lewis (7/26), as well as Kristine Opolais, Oksana Volkova, Jonathan Tetelman, Ryan Speedo Green, and the Tanglewood Festival Chorus in Verdi’s Requiem (7/13). In addition, Andris Nelsons leads the Tanglewood Music Center Orchestra in Wagner’s complete Die Walküre with Christine Goerke as Brünnhilde, Amber Wagner as Sieglinde, Simon O’Neill as Siegmund, James Rutherford as Wotan, and Ain Anger as Hunding (7/27 & 28), and joins Keith Lockhart, John Williams, Thomas Wilkins, and James Burton on the Shed podium for the annual Tanglewood on Parade gala concert (7/23).

Also on the podium for BSO concerts are BSO Associate Conductor Ken-David Masur (8/2), BSO Artistic Partner Thomas Adès (8/11), BSO Assistant Conductor Yu-An Chang in his BSO debut (8/23), and guest conductors Asher Fisch (8/3), Dima Slobodeniouk (8/4), Leonidas Kavakos, who also doubles as soloist (8/9), Rafael Payare in his BSO debut (8/10), François-Xavier Roth (8/17 & 18), and Giancarlo Guerrero (8/25). Also among the guest soloists are Joshua Bell (8/2), Pinchas Zukerman and Amanda Forsyth (8/3), Yefim Bronfman (8/4), Nikolai Lugansky (8/10), Inon Barnatan (8/11), Kirill Gerstein (8/17), Yo-Yo Ma (8/18), and Ingrid Fliter (8/23). Other soloists include Nicole Cabell, J’Nai Bridges, Nicholas Phan, and Morris Robinson as vocal quartet in the traditional, season-ending Beethoven Ninth (8/25), BSO members Thomas Rolfs and Robert Sheena in Copland’s Quiet City (7/12), and members of the BSO horn section in Schumann’s Concert Piece for four horns and orchestra (8/18).

A very special evening in the Shed features Yo-Yo Ma performing J.S. Bach’s six suites for unaccompanied cello (8/11). This concert is part of Yo-Yo Ma’s two-year global initiative, “The Bach Project,” in which he performs Bach’s cello suites—music with which he has had a six-decade relationship—across six continents in an effort to explore, via Bach’s ability to speak to our common humanity, how music and culture connect us all.

In Ozawa Hall, also celebrating Sir André Previn’s 90th birthday, Renée Fleming is joined by the Emerson String Quartet for the world premiere of André Previn and Tom Stoppard’s BSO-commissioned Penelope (7/24). This summer’s 25th-anniversary Ozawa Hall line-up also includes the first Tanglewood appearances of the Venice Baroque Orchestra (7/11), classical guitarist MILOŠ (7/16), and the Hong Kong Chinese Orchestra (8/21); a Bach recital by Hilary Hahn (7/10); a duo- recital by Gautier Capuçon and Jean-Yves Thibaudet (7/17); an all-Ives program with Stefan Jackiw, Jeremy Denk, and the vocal quartet Hudson Shad (7/25); a Paul Lewis recital continuing his exploration of music by Haydn, Brahms, and Beethoven (7/30); and baritone Thomas Hampson and The Beyond Liberty Players in a Francesca Zambello- directed evening entitled “Song of America: Beyond Liberty” (7/31). The August line-up also includes return appearances by the National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America, with conductor Antonio Pappano and mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato in their Tanglewood debuts (8/1) and by The Knights, with violinist Gil Shaham (8/15); Leonidas Kavakos, Emanuel Ax, and Yo-Yo Ma performing Beethoven piano trios (8/6); Yefim Bronfman in an all-Beethoven recital (8/7); and Leonidas Kavakos and Emanuel Ax in a program of Beethoven violin sonatas (8/13).

Three Boston Pops performances celebrate Boston Pops Conductor Laureate John Williams and his art: “Across the Stars: Music of John Williams,” with soloist Anne-Sophie Mutter and conductor David Newman (7/7); Star Wars: A New Hope, a film presentation with live orchestra led by Boston Pops Conductor Keith Lockhart (8/16); and “John Williams’ Film Night” hosted by Maestro Williams himself and conducted by David Newman (8/24).

Tanglewood 2019 also features the return of Live From Here with Chris Thile; the annual Popular Artists series; the annual Popular Artists series, again featuring two shows with James Taylor (7/3 & 4); a full schedule of concerts by the young musicians of the Tanglewood Music Center; the weekly Friday-evening and Saturday-evening Prelude Concerts in Ozawa Hall; Saturday-morning rehearsals; and “Summer Sundays” offering pre-concert events for all ages each Sunday at noon, prior to the afternoon’s 2:30pm BSO concert.

[Andris Nelsons Conducting at Tanglewood]

Anne-Sophie Mutter

[Joshua Bell Headshot]

[Ax Headshot]

[James Taylor Headshot]

[Chris Thile Headshot]