The season-long presence of the Boston Symphony Orchestra makes Tanglewood unique among summer music programs. The TMC Orchestra performs under BSO Music Director Andris Nelsons and the other distinguished conductors leading the BSO at Tanglewood. BSO mentors shepherd the entire experience of a Fellow, adjudicating auditions, tailoring seatings and assignments to each Fellow, coaching in orchestra and small ensembles, and providing ongoing counsel and support. Fellows hear their BSO mentors perform multiple programs each week and have the opportunity to observe rehearsals from the stage. BSO members frequently play in with the TMC Orchestra, and the two ensembles play side-by-side each summer in a performance of Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture.
"I had been to other festivals, but Tanglewood showed me what it's like to play in a professional level orchestra, because the student orchestra there is a professional level orchestra."
- BSO Principal Bass Edwin Barker, TMC 1975
2023 orchestral repertoire/conductors will include:
- MAHLER Symphony No. 4, DEBUSSY La Mer, & RAVEL Alborada del gracioso / BSO Music Director Andris Nelsons
- BEETHOVEN Symphony No. 9 / Susanna Mälkki
- BRAHMS Symphony No. 2 / Dame Jane Glover
- Gabriela Lena FRANK Walkabout: Concerto for Orchestra / Stefan Asbury
- PROKOFIEV Symphony No. 6 / Xian Zhang
- SIBELIUS Symphony No. 2 / Dima Slobodeniouk
- Other repertoire to include: RAVEL Bolero, STRAUSS Don Juan, & Anna THORVALDSDOTTIR METACOSMOS
All Fellows participate in substantial chamber music projects, coached by resident faculty, BSO members, and internationally renowned guests. Violinists, violists, and cellists begin their summer with the String Quartet Seminar. This intensive workshop of coachings and masterclasses culminates in a marathon concert. Double bass, woodwind, brass, and percussion players begin their summer with ensemble playing, including newly-commissioned works for brass ensemble, woodwind ensemble, and double bass septet, plus an annual brass and percussion concert. The TMC places a considerable emphasis on contemporary music, both in recitals throughout the summer and particularly during the world-renowned Festival of Contemporary Music.
TMC Fellows have weekly masterclasses with BSO members, resident faculty, and visiting artists. Masterclasses focus on solo repertoire, excerpts, technical problems, artistic issues, or consist of reading sessions of standard orchestral repertoire. Mock auditions offer Fellows the chance to experience the pressure of auditioning for panelists from a major symphony orchestra and to receive immediate, direct feedback. Winners of the violin, viola, and cello mock auditions perform with the BSO during the summer, and all double bassists are granted the opportunity to play in. A significant number of TMC Fellows go on to win positions with professional symphony orchestras in the year following their attendance at the TMC.
“When I give a class or do a coaching, I am not really coaching students….These musicians are a few years away from being my colleagues.”
- BSO Associate Principal Timpanist Daniel Bauch, TMC 2001-02