Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Music Director Marin Alsop to Conclude 14-Year Tenure with 2020-21 Season



Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Music Director Marin Alsop to Conclude 14-Year Tenure with 2020-21 Season

Internationally-renowned Alsop is named BSO Music Director Laureate and OrchKids Founder

February 26, 2020 (Baltimore, MD)
– The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra today announced that, after fourteen seasons, at the conclusion of her current contract on August 31, 2021, Marin Alsop will step down as Music Director. Beginning in September 2021, Alsop will assume a new role with the BSO, as Music Director Laureate and OrchKids Founder.

As Music Director Laureate, Marin Alsop will lead the orchestra in three concert weeks in each of the next five seasons through 2025-26, besides holding an annual masterclass for conducting students at the Peabody Institute. Maestra Alsop will also continue to participate in the governance of OrchKids, one of the BSO’s most important educational programs.

Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Board Chair Barry Rosen said, “Marin has brought this Orchestra to unprecedented heights, and we will always be grateful for her vision and leadership. Her success as the BSO’s Music Director represents one of the longest tenures in the history of the Baltimore Symphony. Among her many accomplishments has been our outreach into the community as well as the creation of OrchKids, which now serves over 2000 school children in underserved Baltimore neighborhoods.”

Baltimore Symphony President and CEO Peter Kjome said, “Marin Alsop expanded the BSO’s impact nationally and internationally with the release of numerous recordings including the Grammy-nominated Bernstein Mass, as well as conducting the Orchestra on its first international tour in over a decade, featuring the Orchestra’s debut at the BBC Proms and Edinburgh International Festival.” Kjome continued, “We look forward to celebrating Marin and her remarkable accomplishments during our 2020-21 season, and to our continued work together in the years ahead.”

Maestra Marin Alsop commented, “The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra is one of the world’s great orchestras and I have been proud to have served as its artistic leader for the past 14 years. I am looking forward to leading these outstanding musicians as Music Director in the upcoming season and continuing our involvement in my new position as Music Director Laureate.”

BSO percussionist and chair of the Players Committee Brian Prechtl added, “The musicians are proud of what we have accomplished under Marin’s leadership. Her inventive and forward- looking tenure has been characterized by collaboration, inclusion and creativity. Marin’s ability to draw listeners and community into greater understanding and relationship with the music and the musicians sets a new standard across the orchestral world. We are delighted that we will continue to work together for years to come.”

The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra made musical history in September 2007 when Marin Alsop led her inaugural concerts as the Orchestra’s 12th Music Director, becoming the first and only woman to helm a major North American orchestra. As a renowned protégé of Leonard Bernstein, Alsop was central to his 100th birthday celebrations. She is dedicated to new music, and over the course of her tenure has commissioned more than 35 world premieres and performed many rarely heard new works, as well as leading the BSO’s New Music Festival in 2017 and 2018. Under her leadership, the BSO has recorded 14 albums, with numerous critically-acclaimed releases on the Naxos Records label, including Prokofiev’s complete Romeo & Juliet and the Dvořák symphonies. In 2018, Alsop led the BSO on its first international tour in 13 years, highlighted by performances at the Edinburgh International Festival, and the BBC Proms in London’s Royal Albert Hall.

Alsop’s commitment to access, inclusion and educational outreach spurred the creation of new series and programs beloved by many at the BSO, from community participation initiatives, such as Rusty Musicians and the Academy, to the popular “Off the Cuff” concert series, through which audiences learn stories behind major works in the repertoire. Representing one of the organization’s most significant outreach initiatives, in 2008 Alsop and the BSO launched OrchKids, fostering social change through the power of music.

Among her many awards and honors, at the 2019 World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Marin Alsop received the Crystal Award for inspiring inclusive and sustainable change. In 2005, she became the only conductor ever to receive a MacArthur Fellowship, with which she helped fund the launch of OrchKids.

The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra will form a Search Committee to engage in the search for a new Music Director.

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