Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Announces 2017-2018 Season
Music Celebrates Literature, Art and Dance

The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra’s 2017-2018 season celebrates literature, art and dance. Under the programmatic leadership of Music Director Marin Alsop, the Orchestra performs treasures of the repertoire such as Mendelssohn’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition and Rachmaninoff’s Symphonic Dances.

“Art reflects life. It introduces new - sometimes shocking - ideas and offers the public a personal experience of a shared language. Art can tell a story, convey social commentary or create intense emotion,” explains Music Director Marin Alsop. “I’m excited to use music to explore the themes and imagery of literature, art and dance in the BSO’s upcoming season.”

Community collaborations highlighting these three programmatic themes include a partnership with the Baltimore Museum of Art for ‘Impressionist Masterworks,’ Heather Watts, one of the last to be promoted to principal dancer by Balanchine, directing choreography for ‘Tchaikovsky with Balanchine’ and Baltimore hip-hop artist Wordsmith narrating Saint-Saëns' Carnival of the Animals.

“The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra is delighted to announce an extraordinary 2017-2018 Season,” said Peter Kjome, President and CEO. “With the generous support of our community, the BSO is thrilled to present a broad range of concerts and educational programs that will enrich the lives of thousands of people in Baltimore and Maryland.”

The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra continues its commitment to new music with the World Premiere of Christopher Rouse’s Berceuse Infinie and the East Coast Premiere of John Adams' Lola Montez Does the Spider Dance, dedicated to Marin Alsop. 

World-renowned guest artists highlighting the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra’s season include Grammy® Award-winning trumpeter Wynton Marsalis' performance at the 2017 Gala Concert, cellist Sol Gabetta, conductor and violinist Pinchas Zukerman and saxophonist Branford Marsalis. Internationally known guest pianists highlighting the season include: Jonathan Biss, André Watts, Kit Armstrong, Kirill Gerstein, Lukáš Vondráček, Nikolai Lugansky and Stephen Hough. 

Guest artists making their BSO debuts include conductor Lahav Shani, guitarist Łukasz Kuropaczewski, violinist Nicola Benedetti and pianist Nikolai Lugansky. 

Baltimore Symphony Orchestra musicians performing as soloists throughout the season include: Jonathan Carney, Concertmaster, performing Bruch’s Scottish Fantasy; Dariusz Skoraczewski, Principal Cello, performing in Strauss' Don Quixote and joining Jonathan Carney in Beethoven's Concerto for Violin, Violoncello and Piano; James Wyman, Principal Timpani, performing with a guest artist in Philip Glass’ Concerto Fantasy for Two Timpanists; Principal Viola Lisa Steltenpohl performing Don Quixote; Principal Flute Emily Skala and Acting Principal Harp Sarah Fuller performing Mozart’s only score for harp, the Concerto for Flute and Harp; Principal Clarinet Yao Guang Zhai performing Weber’s Concerto No. 2; and First Violin Ellen Pendleton Troyer, Principal Second Violin Qing Li and Assistant Principal Flute Chelsea Knox performing in the Family series. 

Marin Alsop and the BSO celebrate Leonard Bernstein’s centennial with guest violinist Nicola Benedetti in a program dedicated to Bernstein. The performance includes Bernstein favorites such as Symphonic Dances from West Side Story, Three Dance Episodes from On the Town, Serenade and works by modern composers written in homage to Bernstein.

“[Bernstein] was a thinker, teacher, author, television star, provocateur, humanitarian and he was my hero. As with all true mentors, Bernstein taught me much more than a craft. He showed me – and the world – the enormous power of music and how important it is to share it with as much of humanity as is possible. He showed us that classical music is a powerful force that can transform lives as well as inspire and move people and he lived by those principles.” - Marin Alsop 

2017-2018 OFF THE CUFF
Maestra Alsop guides audiences through works by great composers in Off The Cuff. This accessible concert series features conductor commentary, the full orchestra performing masterworks and a post-concert question-and-answer session. 2017-2018 Off The Cuff series highlights include Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring and Mozart’s Requiem. 

Principal Pops Conductor Jack Everly programmed a SuperPops series including the return of Cirque de la Symphonie, Broadway favorites, guest vocalist Frankie Moreno and the Steven Spielberg film Raiders of the Lost Ark with orchestra.

For ages four and up, the BSO’s 2017-2018 Family series includes the classic A Christmas Carol performed with actor Tim Marrone, Carnival of the Animals with family friendly hip-hop narration by Baltimore’s Wordsmith and visuals by Maryland Institute of College of Art students, and a free Halloween concert in the Meyerhoff lobby. 

The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra performs under the baton of Marin Alsop, Music Director; Jack Everly, Principal Pops Conductor; Markus Stenz, Principal Guest Conductor; Nicholas Hersh, Associate Conductor and esteemed guest conductors. 


Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall (Meyerhoff)
1212 Cathedral Street, Baltimore, MD 

The Music Center at Strathmore (Strathmore)
5301 Tuckerman Lane, North Bethesda, MD 

Baltimore Symphony Orchestra subscriptions for the 2017-2018 season for the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall and the BSO at Strathmore go on sale Tuesday, March 21, 2017 through the BSO Ticket Office, 410.783.8000, 877.BSO.1444 or Single tickets for the general public will go on sale in August 2017. 

For press passes to any BSO concert throughout the 2017-2018 season, contact Theresa Kopasek in the Public Relations Office at 410-783-8021 or 

For over a century, the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra (BSO) has been recognized as one of America’s leading orchestras and one of Maryland’s most significant cultural institutions. Under the direction of Music Director Marin Alsop, the Orchestra is internationally recognized and locally admired for its innovation, performances and recordings, and educational outreach initiatives including OrchKids. Launched by Marin Alsop and the BSO in 2008, OrchKids provides children educational resources and fosters social change through the power of music in some of Baltimore’s most underserved communities.

The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra performs annually for more than 350,000 people throughout the State of Maryland. Since 1982, the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra has performed at the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall in Baltimore. In 2005, with the opening of The Music Center at Strathmore in North Bethesda, Maryland, the BSO became the nation’s first orchestra with year-round venues in two metropolitan areas. More information about the BSO can be found at


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