The conductor has signed a three-year contract starting in 2007-08. She will lead the BSO twice next season and six times in 2006-07, when her title will be musical director designate. She has agreed to spend 14 weeks per season in Baltimore as music director.
The BSO announced on July 19 that it had its board had voted to appoint Alsop to succeed Yuri Temirkanov, but some observers speculated that Alsop might turn the job down because of the near-unanimous opposition to her appointment among musicians.
Alsop becomes the first woman to lead a major American orchestra. She has previously served as music director of the Colorado Symphony, and is currently principal conductor of England's Bournemouth Symphony. She has a reputation as an adventurous programmer, and as a specialist in American music.
"Ms. Alsop embodies the kind of visionary leader and possesses a proven track record of artistic acclaim that will surely define a new model for American symphony orchestras," said BSO board chairman Philip D. English. "This world-class conductor with unparalleled performance and recording success will shape an exciting future for the BSO."
"Marin Alsop's devotion to excellence prevails in the standard repertoire, and her commitment to expand symphonic music as a vital and progressive art form continues to be a valuable contribution to music lovers near and far," said James Glicker, the orchestra's president and CEO.