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BSO Names Three New Musicians to Join in 2024–25 Season

The Boston Symphony Orchestra and Music Director Andris Nelsons are pleased to announce the appointment of Lorna McGhee as the orchestra’s new principal flute, starting with the opening of the 2024–25 season in September. A native of Scotland, McGhee will occupy the Walter Piston chair, endowed in perpetuity, succeeding Elizabeth Rowe, who is stepping down at the conclusion of the Tanglewood season after 20 years with the BSO. In addition to leading the BSO’s flute section at Symphony Hall, Tanglewood, Carnegie Hall, and on tour, McGhee will join other first-chair string and wind players to become a member of the Boston Symphony Chamber Players. She will be the eighth principal flute in the BSO’s history, a chair held by the late Doriot Anthony Dwyer who was named the orchestra’s first female principal player in 1952.

The BSO also announces that it has appointed Josh Baker as its new associate principal bassoon (and principal bassoon of the Boston Pops) and Toby Grace as a new member of the percussion section. Both Baker, who joins after five years with the Florida Orchestra, and Grace were Fellows at the Tanglewood Music Center, the BSO’s prestigious summer program that has trained emerging orchestral talent from around the world since its founding by Serge Koussevitzky in 1940.

All three of the newly appointed players will first perform with the BSO during the Opening Weekend concerts at Symphony Hall (Sept. 19–21), which will include a fundraising gala celebrating Andris Nelsons’ tenth anniversary season and a world premiere by Composer Chair Carlos Simon, a Boston Pops Cirque de Symphonie performance conducted by Keith Lockhart, and a free Concert for the City jointly led by Nelsons, Lockhart, and Thomas Wilkins and featuring guest artists from the community.

Statement from BSO Music Director Andris Nelsons:

“I am very pleased to welcome Lorna McGhee as the Boston Symphony Orchestra's new principal flute. Lorna brings a wealth of experience and incredible artistry to this pivotal role. I am also happy to appoint Josh Baker as associate principal bassoonist and Toby Grace as a new percussionist, both of whom studied as Fellows at our wonderful Tanglewood Music Center. I look forward very much to making beautiful music with all three of these very talented musicians this fall, as I begin my eleventh season as Music Director of this extraordinary orchestra.”

Statement from BSO President and CEO Chad Smith:

"Our extraordinary musicians are at the center of our organization. They define the BSO and our work. We are thrilled to welcome Lorna McGhee, Josh Baker, and Toby Grace to the orchestra and look forward to getting to know them as players and colleagues. It is especially gratifying that the Tanglewood Music Center continues to play such an important role in the development of the next generation of orchestral talent."

For full bios and headshots of the new musicians, click here. To download the complete press release, click here.

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