free ONLINE concert STREAMING OF
BSO, boston pops, and tangLEwood programs in the Bso media
In partnership with WCRB, on-demand audio of the broadcasts are made available on WCRB's website and on the BSO website's Media Center (bso.org/mediacenter) in the days following performances and for up to a year after the original date. Likewise, visitors to WCRB's website can enjoy the "BSO Concert Channel," which provides a continuous high-quality audio stream of live BSO performances from Symphony Hall and Tanglewood.
Concert broadcasts from the Shed are produced throughout the Tanglewood season by WCRB Boston, a service of WGBH, and can be heard on WCRB 99.5FM in Boston and WJMF 88.7FM in Providence; WAMC 90.3FM in Albany; and WMNR 88.1FM in Connecticut. In addition, Sunday afternoon concerts are broadcast on WFCR 88.5FM in Amherst, WCNH 91.5 in Concord, NH, and on the classical music stations of Vermont Public Radio and Maine Public Broadcasting Network.
Tune in to 99.5FM WCRB or go to classicalwcrb.org for live broadcasts on Fridays and Saturdays at 8:00pm, and hear Sunday afternoon concerts at 7:00pm, with hosts Ron Della Chiesa and Brian McCreath.
A Brief History of The BSO Broadcasts
The BSO's first live concert broadcast took place on January 23, 1926, initiating a series of Boston Symphony broadcasts, privately-funded by Winfield S. Quinby, a "well-known Boston coffee merchant," that continued through the 1927-28 season. Winfield also sponsored nine Saturday-night Boston Pops concerts in the spring of 1926, marking the first Boston Pops broadcasts. From late 1932 until 1938, BSO concerts were carried-though not always on a regular basis-by NBC. Following the Tanglewood Music Shed inaugural broadcast on August 4, 1938, the BSO, as a non-union orchestra, was barred from the air by the American Federation of Musicians. Broadcasts were resumed soon after the ratification of a union contract in December 1942, and national broadcasts of the Boston Pops began in the spring of 1943. The BSO broadcasts continued, first on NBC, then on ABC, through the 1947-48 season. No BSO concerts were broadcast from Symphony Hall during the 1948-49 season, though portions of BSO rehearsals were aired for three seasons starting in the fall of 1948 as part of the half-hour NBC series "The Boston Symphony Orchestra in Rehearsal," bringing the first stage in the orchestra's broadcasting history to a close.
On October 6, 1951, WGBH signed on the air for the first time with a live Boston Symphony broadcast, making it the longest continuous relationship between a broadcaster and symphony orchestra in the nation. From the mid- to late 1950s, NBC also carried portions of the BSO concerts, either live or on a tape-delayed basis. In the late 1950s, the Boston-area station WCRB began to carry the orchestra's Saturday-night concerts, as did a number of other stations, including New York's WQXR and the QXR network along the eastern seaboard. In October 1957, the Boston Symphony Transcription Trust-ultimately to become a joint venture of WGBH and WCRB-was created to produce BSO broadcast tapes for syndication throughout the country. Though syndication was discontinued for lack of funds in the early '90s, tapes are still made for the orchestra's archive, and live concerts from Symphony Hall and from Tanglewood, the orchestra's summer home in western Massachusetts, continue to be aired on 99.5 WCRB, a service of WGBH.