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Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra

Among the many lessons we’ve learned this past year is this: most of us will never take live music for granted again. The Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra used the time off from live concerts during the pandemic to reevaluate its leadership role in a community frayed by racial strife.

Here’s a little perspective.

The Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra has a new music director. Andreas Delfs is a native of Germany and has held chief artistic posts with orchestras in Europe and North America. He has been a frequent guest conductor of the RPO.

Delfs joins us this hour to discuss his work, his priorities for the RPO, and the orchestra’s 2021 season – one of its most diverse. Our guests: 

  • Andreas Delfs, music director for the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra
  • Jeff Tyzik, principal pops conductor for the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra
  • Juliana Athayde, concertmaster for the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra

Provided by RPO

The Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra’s 2021-22 Philharmonics Series -- its first under forthcoming Music Director Andreas Delfs -- is a subtle balance between conventional symphonic fare and more progressive programming.

There are two ways that classical music ensembles frequently approach programming: perform works by household names dominated by white men, like Beethoven and Brahms, or interpret music of more diverse contemporary composers.

RPO taps veteran maestro Andreas Delfs as music director

Jan 26, 2021
Jacob Walsh / CITY

Andreas Delfs, the seasoned maestro who the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra named Tuesday as its new music director, is a conventional choice to lead the organization into its centennial year. But there will be something unconventional waiting in the wings of each concert.

“After a long performance, a beer very much revitalizes and re-energizes me,” he said. “I normally have a deal with the stagehand to have one ready for me right when I come offstage. I haven’t established that rapport here yet.”

HomeStage: Erin Hannigan

Nov 17, 2020

This HomeStage performance comes all the way from the Lone Star State.

Oboist Erin Hannigan is a graduate of the Eastman School of Music and she played in the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra. Now she's the principal oboist with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra.

Erin loves animals and has always had rescue dogs. But she wanted to do more. She and photographer Teresa Berg joined forces to create Artists for Animals. They have raised tens of thousands of dollars for animal shelters in northern Texas, with concerts, galas, community outreach, and even cute calendars.

One secret about Erin: Even though she's a dog lover, she also rescued a Siamese kitten named Gabby.

On this week’s HomeStage, she performs a piece called “Jimson Weed,” composed by Alyssa Morris.

Kurt Brownell

The Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra confirmed Tuesday that it is postponing or canceling all of its September, October and November traditional programming. In place of the performances: Five livestreamed concerts, without an audience, from Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre.

The affected shows include all philharmonic, Pops, Sunday Matinee and orKIDStra Series performances, as well as a series of specials that are being rescheduled for next summer. Events scheduled for December and beyond remain in place while the RPO awaits further word from the state.

Kurt Brownell

Beating New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo to the punch by one news cycle, the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra announced Thursday afternoon that it was postponing all concerts through May 9.

And by Friday morning, that decision proved to be academic anyway, as Cuomo announced that all workers in nonessential businesses in the state are required to stay home in an effort to combat the spread of the coronavirus.

RPO shows affected by its announcement are:

Max Schulte / WXXI News

Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra held its first livestreamed performance Friday morning for classrooms whose field trips were canceled due to coronavirus concerns and precautions.

This week, the RPO had to cancel a series of interactive, educational performances around the concept of voting for fourth- through sixth-graders. According to Marie-Andélina de la Farrière with the RPO, more than 5,000 students in 250 classrooms participated in the live-stream in more than 50 schools.

The Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra and the Eastman School of Music have agreed to postpone all RPO concerts in Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre effective immediately through April 15.

A statement from the RPO notes that following Governor Andrew Cuomo declaring a ‘state of emergency’ over the weekend, the University of Rochester issued plans to restrict campus events, including Eastman Theatre, in an attempt to limit the impact of the coronavirus.

RPO's 2020-21 season offers balance of old, new

Feb 11, 2020
ERICH CAMPING

The Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra’s 2020-21 season will inevitably be viewed through the lens of Ward Stare’s final season as music director.

In six full seasons with the RPO, Stare has helped to create a period of stable artistic leadership following the uncertainty left in the wake of Arild Remmereit’s firing in 2013. On Tuesday, M&T Bank announced that it is awarding the RPO with a $110,000 grant over three years to bolster the orchestra’s resources for concert programming.

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