This morning, Boston Symphony Orchestra announces its coming season, September 30th – April 30th, and the reopening of Symphony Hall to concertgoers, enthusiastically welcoming audiences back for the first time since March 2020. Click HERE for the calendar.
In the opener, Nelsons shares the podium with John Williams, and the spotlight with Anne-Sophie Mutter, the soloist in Williams’s Violin Concerto no. 2, Beethoven’s Consecration of the House overture, and the BSO signature work, Bartók’s Concerto for Orchestra will fill out the concert.
Nelsons, the Ray And Maria Stata music director, had this to say:
“The BSO’s 2021-’22 season at Symphony Hall will be a great celebration, marking the return to concert life and the reunion with our beloved music community. We have all been waiting for this moment for a very long time.
“This past year has deepened our appreciation of music as a necessary source of reflection, contemplation, inspiration, comfort, and growth, and we feel extremely blessed to work at making and performing music together. We are immeasurably excited at the prospect of sharing this music with our treasured audiences once again – our audiences that have given us so much energy during every concert, energy we have sorely missed this past season. Being able to spend time together, filling our hearts and minds and embracing all of music’s spiritual gifts that await us inside Symphony Hall – this will be a very special time for all of us.
“The season is filled with a wide and beautiful palette of music, with many of the world’s most esteemed guest artists and conductors joining us for rich and varied programs. Furthermore, the season includes the highly anticipated return of the Tanglewood Festival Chorus, finally to be reunited with the BSO for the first time since March 2020, with performances of Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem and Janáček’s Glagolitic Mass.
“The exciting opening performance sets the celebratory tone for the remainder of the season, with Anne-Sophie Mutter’s return to the Symphony Hall stage for a new violin concerto composed by our very own John Williams, on a program that opens with Beethoven’s Consecration of the House Overture – a piece especially meaningful on this occasion. [Ed.: It was the work that opened the orchestra’s inaugural concert, in 1881.]
“Berg’s Wozzeck, our continued exploration of Shostakovich, six works by Richard Strauss, and the start of a Beethoven piano concerto performance cycle with the incomparable Mitsuko Uchida will be presented alongside world and American premieres, showcasing many new works by composers of our time — including Julia Adolphe, Unsuk Chin, HK Gruber, Bernard Rands, Kaija Saariaho, and Jörg Widmann — to our always receptive Symphony Hall audiences. We hope that our season brings longtime patrons and newcomers alike something very special to take in and cherish. We also very much look forward to venturing beyond Boston, as the orchestra returns to Carnegie Hall and to many of the great European concert venues.
“As we gradually settle back into our familiar routines, I believe we all must continue to treasure the activities that bring deep meaning to our lives, and the many beautiful gifts that life, in all its vulnerability, bestows upon us – including our singular music community. This is how I feel about the return to concertizing with the BSO before its devoted audiences, who have sustained us in so many vital ways during this past year and always. We are so deeply grateful to you.”
Nelsons Leads 13 of the Season’s 24 Programs at Symphony Hall and Performances at Carnegie Hall and On Tour
*Concert performances of Berg’s Wozzeck with Bo Skovhus and Christine Goerke
*World premieres by Julia Adolphe, HK Gruber, and Kaija Saariaho and American premieres by Unsuk Chin and Jörg Widmann, as well as Sofia Gubaidulina’s The Light of the End and Arvo Pärt’s Cantus in Memory of Benjamin Britten
*A continuation of the BSO’s Grammy award-winning Shostakovich recording cycle with Deutsche Grammophon
*A new cycle of six major works by Richard Strauss
*The launch of a performance cycle of all five Beethoven Concertos with soloist Mitsuko Uchida, starting with Nos. 2 and 4
*Major Andris Nelsons-led European tour and recording project, in partnership with the Gewandhausorchestre, Leipzig (GHO), as well as details of the season’s “Leipzig Week in Boston,” to be announced in the fall
*A return to Carnegie Hall on March 14 and 15, with Andris Nelsons and BSO performing an Ives, Unsuk Chin, and Berlioz program and Berg’s Wozzeck
*Orchestra works of Berlioz, Brahms, Ives, Mahler, Prokofiev, Rachmaninoff, Still, and Stravinsky
Nelsons To Collaborate with Major Artists
*Lisa Batiashvili (Sibelius Violin Concerto)
*Lise Davidsen (Strauss Four Last Songs)
*Hilary Hahn (Mozart Violin Concerto No. 5)
*Håkan Hardenberger (American premiere of Jörg Widmann Towards Paradise [Labyrinth VI], for trumpet and orchestra)
*Lucas and Arthur Jussen (Mozart Concert in E-flat for two pianos)
*Leonidas Kavakos (American premiere of Unsuk Chin Violin Concerto No. 2, Scherben Der Stille [Shards of Silence]
*Anu Komsi (world premiere of Kaija Saariaho Saarikoski Songs)
*Marlis Petersen (Strauss “Dance of the Seven Veils” and final scene from Salome)
*Baiba Skride (Shostakovich Violin Concerto No. 1)
Subscriptions go on sale on July 19 and single tickets August 30, through bso.org and 888-266-1200.
Touchless mobile tickets will be the preferred method of entry; flexible cancellation, refund, and exchange policies will be available for subscribers.
On October 3, in celebration of the reopening of Symphony Hall, the BSO will present a free community concert under the direction of Nelsons, Keith Lockhart, Thomas Wilkins, and Williams.
Programs Under the Direction of Titled Conductors Thomas Wilkins, Anna Rakatina, and Thomas Adès
*Thomas Wilkins, BSO Artistic Advisor for Education and Community Engagement, to lead Victor Wooten’s La Lección Tres for electric bass and orchestra, with the composer as soloist, and works of Coleridge-Taylor and Ellington
*Anna Rakitina, BSO Assistant Conductor, to lead program of Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No. 2 with soloist Alexandre Kantorow in his BSO debut, Sibelius Symphony No. 7, as well as Ellen Reid’s When the World As You’ve Known It Doesn’t Exist
*Thomas Adès, BSO Artistic Partner, reprises his highly acclaimed Concerto for Piano and Orchestra, with soloist Kirill Gerstein, on a program with works of Berg and Ravel
Major Works Under the Direction of Guest Conductors
*Sir Antonio Pappano to lead the BSO in Britten’s War Requiem with soloists Albina Shagimuratova, Ian Bostridge, and Matthias Goerne
* Janáček’s Glagolitic Mass, under the direction of Jakub Hrůša, to feature soloists Kateřina Kněžíková, Sasha Cooke, Brandon Jovanovich, and Adam Plachetka, and organist Paul Jacobs
*Tanglewood Festival Chorus, under the direction of James Burton, makes a long-awaited return to concertizing with the BSO with these two programs; Boston Symphony Children’s Choir makes a welcome return to the BSO for the War Requiem
Additional Guest Conductors and Artists
*Herbert Blomstedt (Bruckner 4 and Mozart Piano Concerto No. 17 with Martin Helmchin)
*Alan Gilbert (American Premiere of work by Bernard Rands and Beethoven Violin Concerto with Joshua Bell)
*Ton Koopman (Beethoven Symphony 2 and Mozart Clarinet Concerto with BSO’s William R. Hudgins)
*Dima Slobokeniouk (Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1 with Beatrice Rana and Dvořák 7)
*BSO debut of Elim Chan (Brian Raphael Nabors Pulse and Brahms Piano Concerto No. 2 with Igor Levit)
*BSO debut of Phillippe Jordan (Works of Borodin and Prokoviev and Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No. 3 with Yefim Bronfman)
BSO Youth and Family Concerts Series features two programs, including a sensory-friendly concert, both led by BSO Youth And Family Concerts Conductor Thomas Wilkins; Boston Youth Symphony Orchestras to be featured in two programs: Prokofiev’s Peter And The Wolf with conductor Adrian Slywotsky and a program of music and magic led by conductor Marta Żurad and featuring magician Matt Roberts.
New Three-Concert Sunday Series Launches and Popular Discounted Ticketing Programs, Casual Friday Concerts, and Free Community Chamber Music Programs Return
*BSO introduces new three-concert Sunday-afternoon series, October 31, January 16, and February 13
*For Casual Fridays, continuing for the seventh season, patrons are encouraged to wear casual attire and enjoy shorter programs, informal conversations with BSO members, and special Conductor-Cam seating, where patrons can watch video of the conductor from the orchestra’s perspective
*BSO’s highly successful $25 tickets for people under 40 returns in 2021-22
*$30 College Card available throughout the season
*$10 Rush Tickets program, offering significantly discounted tickets to concertgoers on the day of concert since the orchestra’s inception, continues for select performances throughout the year
*Free Community Chamber Music programs return in 2021-22
*Youth and Family Concerts explore the theme, “So Now What: A Musical Look at Anticipation, Expectation, and a New Certainty Toward the Fulfillment of Our Promise”
Continued Release of Performance Streams
Following the success of BSO NOW streaming platform, launched in 2020 in response to the performance hiatus due to pandemic restrictions, the BSO will continue to release performance streams throughout the season at bso.org/ now.
Bank of America is the lead sponsor of the season.
Concerts during first seven weeks (through November 13) will have no intermissions, as the orchestra enters a new phase of reopening and its next chapter in a post-covid world.
Mask-wearing, physical distancing, and vaccinations will not be required, although masking is recommended for patrons who are unvaccinated, per CDC guidelines.
All needed upgrades to airhandling systems have been or are in the process of being completed prior to the first performance; the BSO is pleased to announce that Symphony Hall has received the GBAC star facility accreditation — the gold standard of prepared facilities — Issued by the Global Biorisk Advisory Council.
FURTHER DETAILS OF THE 2021-22 BSO SEASON
The Boston Symphony Orchestra and Music Director Andris Nelsons present a 2021-22 Symphony Hall season, September 30-April 30, that will first and foremost celebrate reuniting with their music community post-pandemic, while also continuing the orchestra’s commitment to welcoming new audiences to experience the singular gifts the BSO and Mr. Nelsons are so eager to share with devoted listeners in Boston and throughout the world. This commitment to returning to performances with audiences is matched by an equally strong commitment to the health and safety of everyone associated with the BSO, including patrons, staff, and musicians.
The Boston Symphony Orchestra looks forward to reaching out to the greater Boston community and beyond, with such activites as a free Symphony Hall Community Concert on October 3, led by Andris Nelsons, Keith Lockhart, Thomas Wilkins, and John Williams and its free series of community chamber music concerts throughout the city and accompanying neighborhoods, BSO Youth and Family Concerts, including a sensory-friendly program, and annual presentation of the Boston Youth Symphony Orchestra performances. In addition, the BSO is commited to offering a variety of discounted ticket programs, including its highly popular $30 College Card, its founding tradition of Rush Tickets (now $10), and $25 tickets for people under 40, as well as its Casual Friday and Open Rehearsal four-concert series.
The BSO’s 2021-22 Season with BSO Music Director Andris Nelsons
The Boston Symphony Orchestra and Music Director Andris Nelsons take special pleasure in reopening the orchestra’s legendary home, Symphony Hall, to its loyal audiences, and in announcing program details for 2021-22. It will be the first fall-winter-spring season since the COVID-19 virus necessitated the shuttering of Symphony Hall in March 2020 and the resultant 18-month hiatus from live performances with audiences. The very first work concertgoers will hear in the BSO’s opening concert (9/30, 10/2) is Beethoven’s Consecration of the House Overture—a most fitting choice not just because it imparts a sense of renewal and revitalization. It was the work that opened the orchestra’s inaugural concert in 1881 and the music used to underscore the opening credits of the BSO NOW streaming programs offered during the orchestra’s hiatus from performances for live audiences. This special reopening concert will also feature the Boston premiere of a new work by the BSO’s very own John Williams—his Violin Concerto No. 2 performed by Anne-Sophie Mutter, under the direction of Mr. Williams.
The following week (10/7, 8, 9, 12), Mr. Nelsons leads the first of the season’s explorations of the major works of Richard Strauss, the “Love Scene” from Feuersnot, and Death and Transfiguration, on a program with Mozart’s Duo-Piano Concerto, K.365, featuring the Jussen brothers, Lucas and Arthur. Also in October (10/14-16), Mr. Nelsons leads Strauss’s Symphonic Fantasy on Die Frau ohne Schatten, on a program with Still’s Threnody: In Memory of Jan Sibelius and the Sibelius Violin Concerto featuring soloist Lisa Batiashvili. The Still and Strauss works remain on the October 19 program, alongside Bartók’s Concerto for Orchestra, the BSO’s most famous commission. Rounding out his programs for the month, Mr. Nelsons leads an all-Russian program featuring Sofia Gubaidulina’s The Light of the End, honoring the composer’s 90th birthday, and Rachmaninoff’s Symphony No. 3.
In November, Mr. Nelsons is joined by frequent collaborator Håkan Hardenberger for the American premiere of Jörg Widmann’s Towards Paradise (Labyrinth VI), for trumpet and orchestra, on a program with Mahler’s Symphony No. 1 (11/18-20). The following week (11/23, 26, 27) brings an all-Brahms program featuring the Serenade No. 2 and Symphony No. 1.
Returning to the BSO podium in 2022 (1/6-8), Mr. Nelsons leads a program highlighted by the World premiere of HK Gruber’s Short Stories from the Vienna Woods and an appearance by Hilary Hahn as soloist in Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 5. The following week (1/13-16) Mitsuko Uchida joins Mr. Nelsons and the BSO for Beethoven’s Piano Concertos 2 and 4, the launch of a performance cycle of all the Beethoven piano concertos to take place over the next three seasons; this program opens with the world premiere of Julia Adolphe’s Makeshift Castle.
Mr. Nelsons’ next program (2/24, 25, 26; 3/1) opens with Arvo Pärt’s Cantus in Memory of Benjamin Britten, followed by Shostakovich’s Violin Concerto No. 1 with Baiba Skride as soloist, the world premiere of the orchestral version of Kaija Saariaho’s Saarikoski Songs with soprano Anu Komsi as soloist, and, to conclude the concert, Stravinsky’s Firebird Suite (1919 version). Also in March (3/3-5), Mr. Nelsons leads the American premiere of Unsuk Chin’s Violin Concerto No. 2, Scherben der Stille (Shards of Silence), with soloist Leonidas Kavakos, on a program with Ives’s The Unanswered Question and Berlioz’s Symphonie fantastique. The Ives and Berlioz works make up the March 11 Casual Friday program. The season’s opera-in-concert, Berg’s Wozzeck, boasts an all-star cast, to include Bo Skovhus in the title role, Christine Goerke as Marie, Sasha Cooke as Margret, Christopher Ventris as the Drum Major, Mauro Peter as Andres, and Franz Hawlata as the Doctor (3/10, 12).
To close the season and the current phase of the Strauss Project, Mr. Nelsons leads the Boston Symphony in all-Strauss programs that include Till Eulenspiegel’s Merry Pranks (4/21, 23, 26); the Four Last Songs featuring soprano Lise Davidsen (4/21); the Symphonia domestica (4/21, 22, 23, 26); the “Dance of the Seven Veils” and Final Scene from Salome featuring soprano Marlis Petersen (4/28-30), and An Alpine Symphony (4/28-30).
The expansion of the BSO/Deutsche Grammophon award-winning Shostakovich recording project—now extending beyond the symphonies—continues in the 2021-22 season with performances and recording of the Violin Concerto No. 1 with Baiba Skride, a frequent collaborator with Andris Nelsons and the BSO, as soloist.
BSO Titled Conductors—Thomas Adès, Anna Rakitina, and Thomas Wilkins—and Guest Conductors
Thomas Adès, BSO Artistic Partner, leads his Concerto for Piano and Orchestra with Kirill Gerstein on a program with Berg’s Three Pieces for Orchestra, Ravel’s Piano Concerto for the left hand, and Ravel’s La Valse (1/27-29). BSO Assistant Conductor Anna Rakitina makes her Symphony Hall debut in a program featuring Alexandre Kantorow as soloist in Tchaikovsky’s rarely performed Piano Concerto No. 2, Ellen Reid’s When the World as You’ve Known It Doesn’t Exist, and Sibelius’s Symphony No. 7 (4/7-9). Thomas Wilkins, BSO Artistic Advisor for Education and Community Engagement, is joined by electric bass virtuoso Victor Wooten for Wooten’s own La Lección Tres, for electric bass and orchestra, on a program with Coleridge-Taylor’s Suite from the ballet Hiawatha and Ellington’s Suite from The River (10/28-31).
Guest conductors for 2021-22 include Dima Slobodeniouk (Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No. 1 with soloist Beatrice Rana and Dvořák Symphony No. 7); Ton Koopman (Mozart Clarinet Concerto with BSO principal William R. Hudgins as soloist and Beethoven Symphony No. 2); Elim Chan (Brahms Piano Concerto No. 2 with Igor Levit as soloist, Brian Raphael Nabors’ Pulse, and Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 2, Little Russian); Jakub Hrůša (Dvořák Symphony No. 6 and Janáček Glagolitic Mass with soloists Kateřina Kněžíková, Sasha Cooke, Brandon Jovanovich, and Adam Plachetka, organist Paul Jacobs, and the Tanglewood Festival Chorus, James Burton, conductor); Philippe Jordan (Borodin Overture to Prince Igor, Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No. 3 with soloist Yefim Bronfman, Prokofiev Suite from Romeo and Juliet); Herbert Blomstedt (Mozart Piano Concerto No. 17 with soloist Martin Helmchen, Bruckner Symphony No. 4, Romantic); Sir Antonio Pappano (Britten War Requiem with all-star vocalists Albina Shagimuratova, Ian Bostridge, and Matthias Goerne, the Tanglewood Festival Chorus and Boston Symphony Children’s Choir); and Alan Gilbert (Beethoven Violin Concerto with soloist Joshua Bell, and the American premiere of Bernard Rands’s Symphonic Fantasy).
In addition to BSO family members Thomas Adès and Thomas Wilkins, guests returning to the Symphony Hall podium include Herbert Blomstedt, Alan Gilbert, Jakub Hrůša, Ton Koopman, Sir Antonio Pappano, and Dima Slobodeniouk. Hong Kong-born Elim Chan makes her BSO conducting debut, as does Zurich-born Philippe Jordan. BSO Assistant Conductor Anna Rakitina, whose subscription season debut was postponed because of the pandemic, leads the BSO in live performance at Symphony Hall for the first time in 2021-22.
Guest Soloists and the Tanglewood Festival Chorus
The impressive roster of instrumental and vocal soloists encompasses returning favorites and accomplished performers making debuts. Returning pianists include Yefim Bronfman, Kirill Gerstein, Martin Helmchen, Lucas and Arthur Jussen, and Mitsuko Uchida. Making their BSO debuts are two young, award-winning pianists, Alexandre Kantorow of France and Beatrice Rana of Italy. The Russian-German pianist Igor Levit, whose previous BSO appearances were at Tanglewood, joins the orchestra for the first time in Symphony Hall. Electric bassist/composer Victor Wooten, who appeared in 1996 with the Boston Pops, makes his Boston Symphony debut, as does organist Paul Jacobs. Other treasured instrumentalists returning to Symphony Hall include violinists Lisa Batiashvili, Joshua Bell, Hilary Hahn, Leonidas Kavakos, Anne-Sophie Mutter, and Baiba Skride and trumpeter Håkan Hardenberger.
Returning vocal soloists include sopranos Christine Goerke, Marlis Petersen, and Albina Shagimuratova, mezzo-soprano Sasha Cooke, tenor Ian Bostridge, baritone Matthias Goerne, and bass Franz Hawlata. Singers making their BSO debuts include sopranos Lise Davidsen, Kateřina Kněžíková, and Anu Komsi, tenor Mauro Peter, and bass Adam Plachetka. Joining the BSO for the first time in Symphony Hall are tenors Brandon Jovanovich and Christopher Ventris and baritone Bo Skovhus.
The beloved Tanglewood Festival Chorus, under the direction of James Burton, makes two appearances during the 2021-22 season, performing two of the twentieth century’s most important choral works: Janáček’s vibrant Glagolitic Mass (2/3-5)—which uses Old Church Slavonic for the usual Mass texts—under the direction of Czech conductor Jakub Hrůša; and, joined by the Boston Symphony Children’s Choir, Britten’s pacifist-oriented War Requiem (3/31-4/2)—which interweaves poems of Wilfred Owen with the traditional liturgical texts—led by Sir Antonio Pappano.
Music from Composers of Our Time
The BSO continues its longstanding commitment to commissioning a wide range of new works from leading contemporary composers with the performance of six co-commissioned works—from composers representing three continents—in the 2021-22 season. Andris Nelsons leads the world premiere of Julia Adolphe’s Makeshift Castle, the American premiere of Unsuk Chin’s Violin Concerto No. 2, Scherben der Stille (Shards of Silence) with Leonidas Kavakos as soloist, the world premiere of HK Gruber’s Short Stories from the Vienna Woods, the world premiere of the orchestral version of Kaija Saariaho’s Saarikoski Songs with soprano Anu Komsi, and the American premiere of Jörg Widmann’s Towards Paradise (Labyrinth VI), for trumpet and orchestra with Håkan Hardenberger as soloist. Guest conductor Elim Chan leads Pulse, by young American composer Brian Raphael Nabors, and guest Alan Gilbert leads the American premiere of Bernard Rands’s Symphonic Fantasy.
The season-opening concerts feature John Williams, Boston Pops Conductor Laureate and Artist-in-Residence at Tanglewood, conducting his own Violin Concerto No. 2 with soloist Anne-Sophie Mutter, who is scheduled to premiere the piece at Tanglewood in summer 2021. Conductor/composer Thomas Adès, who serves as BSO Artistic Partner, leads his own Piano Concerto with Kirill Gerstein as soloist. Andris Nelsons leads Sofia Gubaidulina’s The Light of the End. BSO Artistic Advisor for Education and Community Engagement Thomas Wilkins leads Victor Wooten’s La Lección Tres, for electric bass and orchestra, with the composer as soloist. BSO Assistant Conductor Anna Rakitina leads When the World as You’ve Known It Doesn’t Exist by young American composer and sound artist Ellen Reid, winner of the 2019 Pulitizer Prize in Music.
Casual Fridays: 4 Friday-evening concert series at 8 p.m.
October 29, February 25, March 11, April 22
For these four Friday-evening concerts patrons can wear their favorite casual attire and enjoy a slightly shorter concert. This lower-priced series also features a special Tech Section for Conductor-Cam seating, which allows patrons to watch the conductor from the orchestra’s perspective on strategically placed screens in a rear section of the floor. Immediately after the performance, patrons can stay in the hall for a thought-provoking Casual Conversation with BSO musicians and featured guests to learn about their experiences and the music played that evening.
Open Rehearsals: 4 Thursday-morning rehearsal series at 10:30 a.m.
November 11, January 20, March 3, April 14
BSO Open Rehearsals offer audience members a unique perspective on the creative dynamic between orchestra and conductor and gain a better understanding of how the orchestra strives to refine its performance by occasionally repeating passages or focusing on a particular movement. Please note that all seats for Open Rehearsals are ticketed, rather than general seating.
Boston Symphony Chamber Players at Jordan Hall
November 7, January 23, February 20, and April 10 at 3
The Boston Symphony Chamber Players’ Sunday-afternoon chamber music series at Jordan Hall in 2021-22 will include works by Marti Epstein, Michael Gandolfi, Sofia Gubaidulina, Jennifer Higdon, Elena Langer, Shulamit Ran, and Yehudi Wyner, as well as music of Bartók, Dvořák, Louise Farrenc, Glinka, Hindemith, Mozart, and Shostakovich; click here for a complete schedule of 2021-22 Chamber Players programs.
BSO Resident Fellowship Program that was to Launch in 2021 has been Moved to 2022
Starting in summer 2022, the BSO will establish the BSO Resident Fellowship Program—an excellence-based training program for early-career orchestra musicians from underrepresented populations. The 1–2-year program will provide opportunities for young musicians of color to study with BSO musicians and perform with the BSO and Boston Pops in their Symphony Hall seasons in Boston, as well as to participate as Fellows of the Tanglewood Music Center, the BSO’s acclaimed summer music academy. Created under Mark Volpe’s leadership as BSO President and CEO (he steps down from the role on June 20, 2021), in partnership with the musicians of the BSO, this new program was announced in late August 2020 and was intended to start in summer 2021 and continue through the BSO’s 2021-22 season. Since the BSO has not been able to have auditions of any sort during the pandemic, the orchestra had to move the start date of the fellowship program to 2022.
Formal BSO titles for conductors referenced in this release: Andris Nelsons is the Ray and Maria Stata BSO Music Director; Keith Lockhart is the Julian and Eunice Cohen Boston Pops Conductor, Thomas Adès is the Deborah and Philip Edmundson Artistic Partner; and Thomas Wilkins is the BSO’s Artistic Advisor, Education and Community Engagement, and Germeshausen Youth and Family Concerts Conductor. John Williams is the George and Roberta Berry Boston Pops Conductor Laureate
Anna Rakitina is the BSO Assistant Conductor.
FURTHER DETAILS ON HOW TO PURCHASE TICKETS AND
FREE AND DISCOUNTED TICKET PROGRAMS
Subscription renewals for the 2021-22 BSO season go on sale July 19 and single tickets go on sale on August 30 through bso.org and 888-266-1200. Tickets for the 2021-22 BSO season will also be available beginning August 30 at the Symphony Hall Box Office, at 301 Massachusetts Avenue, Boston, MA. Contactless mobile ticketing, available for subscribers, will be the preferred method of entry. Mobile tickets can be delivered to patron mobile devices and scanned upon entry to Symphony Hall, creating a convenient contactless way for patrons to receive their tickets electronically. Paper tickets will also be available upon request.
Please note: In recognition that some ticket buyers may appreciate some time to adjust to the return to the concert experience, post-pandemic, the BSO is offering flexible cancellation, refund, and exchange policies to subscribers who are unwell or reluctant to return immediately to Symphony Hall. Further details about subscriber benefits will be outlined in a forthcoming communication with renewal materials. Single ticket buyers will be able to exchange their tickets for another performance; these transactions will be subject to a $6.50 handling fee per ticket.
Special Programs Offering Discounted Ticket Prices, in Addition to the Casual Fridays and Open Rehearsal series
$25 Tickets for Patrons Under 40
$25 tickets are available during the BSO season for patrons under 40 years of age. Tickets are available on a first-come, first-served basis on both the orchestra and balcony levels. There is a limit of one pair of tickets per performance and age verification is required for purchase. These tickets go on sale on August 30, 2021; some black-out dates may apply.
The BSO College Card is the best way for college students to experience the BSO on a regular basis. For the $30 cost of the card, full-time college students can attend a wide variety of BSO concerts throughout the season at no additional cost. Once registered College Card holders receive notification of ticket availability for concerts within the upcoming week, they can book their tickets online or in person, subject to availability. In addition, for the 2021-22 season, College Card holders receive access to all 2021-22 season BSO concerts available through BSO NOW.
The BSO offers a limited number of Rush Tickets for BSO subscription-series concerts on Sunday afternoons, Tuesday and Thursday evenings and Friday afternoons. Tickets are $10 each, cash only, one to a customer, and can be purchased at the BSO Box Office on Massachusetts Avenue on Fridays beginning at 10 a.m., on Tuesdays and Thursdays beginning at 4pm, and on Sundays at 1pm. Please note: Rush Tickets are not available on Friday evenings and Saturday evenings.
EBT Card to Culture
A partnership with the Executive Office of Health and Human Services’ Department of Transitional Assistance, the EBT Card to Culture makes culture programs accessible to a wider range of Massachusetts residents. For the 2021-22 Boston Symphony Orchestra season, the BSO will offer $10 adult tickets and $5 children under 18 tickets for EBT card holders with support from the Mass Cultural Council. EBT cardholders will also be able to purchase discounted access to streaming performances on BSO NOW.
Tickets may be purchased beginning on August 30 by visiting the Symphony Hall Box Office or by calling Ticketing at 888-266-1200. A valid EBT card must be shown at the Box Office for in-person purchases. Tickets ordered by phone will be held at the Box Office for pick-up with a valid EBT card. Ticket quantities for EBT card holders are limited for all performances and subject to availability. Each card holder may purchase a total of eight tickets during the entire 2021-22 season.
FURTHER DETAILS ON UPDATES ON HEALTH AND SAFETY PROTOCOLS AND THE VISITOR
EXPERIENCE IN FALL 2021
During the first seven weeks of the BSO’s 2021-22 season, September 30-November 13, the programs will have no intermissions as a precautionary measure as the orchestra begins to enter a new phase of reopening and its next new chapter in a post-Covid world.
In line with recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and the BSO’s own team of advisors and medical experts, including 9Foundations, the Boston Symphony Orchestra will not require masking, social distancing, or vaccinations for patrons attending performances in the BSO’s 2021-22 season, September 30-April 30; both masking and physical distancing are recommended for patrons who are unvaccinated, per guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control.
An analysis of the BSO’s Symphony Hall air handling systems has been completed and all needed upgrades have happened or are in the process of being completed; the filtration and ventilation in the auditorium and in all rooms in Symphony Hall now meet or exceed the standards recommended by healthy building experts. The BSO is pleased to announce that it has received the GBAC STAR Facility Accreditation—the gold standard of prepared facilities—issued by the Global Biorisk Advisory Council. This accreditation affirms that a facility has established and maintained a cleaning, disinfection, and infectious disease prevention program to minimize risks associated with infectious agents like the novel coronavirus and has the proper cleaning protocols, disinfection techniques, and work practices in place to combat biohazards and infectious disease. The Symphony Hall facilities team will continue to monitor conditions and ensure that all spaces throughout the building, including restrooms, are cleaned and sanitized to COVID-19 regulation standards.
The management of the BSO will continue to monitor official government recommendations and advice from its own advisors and experts on all health and safety measures throughout the summer and fall months. The BSO remains committed to tracking all aspects of the virus, monitoring and following the science behind all recommended protocols and restrictions. Ticket buyers will be updated as soon as possible if the pandemic conditions change over the coming months and it becomes necessary or prudent to adopt different protocols.
If changes to the current plan become necessary, ticket buyers will receive information and updates through email correspondence. The most current information about policies and procedures will be posted over the coming months at bso.org, with prompts regularly featured on the orchestra’s social media platforms linking to more detailed information.
BSO MEDIA OFFERINGS
BSO NOW Streaming Platform Continues in 2021-22 BSO Season
Following the success of the BSO NOW streaming platform—launched in 2020 in response to the performance hiatus due to pandemic restrictions—the Boston Symphony Orchestra will continue to release concert streams throughout the 2021-22 season at bso.org/now. These online performances will be available through a BSO NOW Access Pass, with details to be announced at a later date. BSO NOW content is available through a browser-based web app and on Apple TV and Roku, with Amazon Fire TV and Samsung Smart TV to come soon. Details about current BSO NOW online concert offerings are available at bso.org/now.
The BSO’s website—bso.org—and Social Media Platforms
Patrons can visit the BSO website at bso.org to access performance schedules, purchase tickets, download program notes, listen to radio broadcasts and music clips, make donations, and watch such video exclusives as our BSO at Home series at bso.org/athome. The Boston Symphony Orchestra maintains a robust online presence on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube. Links to these needed.
BSO Recordings Available at the Digital Media Section on bso.org
Users can also purchase music produced and published under the BSO’s music label, BSO Classics, including performances by the BSO, Boston Pops, Boston Symphony Chamber Players, Tanglewood Festival Chorus, and Tanglewood Music Center Fellows. The BSO and Andris Nelsons’ recent Grammy-winning albums from the Shostakovich cycle are also available through third-party sites listed in the CDs and Digital Media section of the Shop on bso.org. Special thanks go to Lloyd Axelrod, M.D., for his support of the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s Shostakovich recording project.
Radio Broadcasts and Streaming
BSO concerts at Symphony Hall are broadcast regularly on 99.5 CRB, a service of GBH, and can be accessed at bso.org/broadcast. Saturday-evening concerts are broadcast live on 99.5 in Boston and 88.7 in Providence, on HD radio at 89.7 HD2 in Boston, and online at classicalwcrb.org, and are repeated at 8 p.m. on Monday evenings. In addition, BSO concerts from Tanglewood are heard on CRB, as well as WAMC in Albany, NY; WMNR in Monroe, CT; and New England Public Radio