For the first time, Tanglewood's opening night (July 5) will fall on Berkshire Night, its annual concert offered for free to 1,000 Berkshire residents. BSO music director James Levine leads a concert performance of Berlioz's Les Troyens over two nights. Singing are tenor Marcus Haddock (Aeneas), soprano Anna Caterina Antonacci (Cassandra), mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter (Dido), baritone Dwayne Croft (Chorebus), and the Tanglewood Festival Chorus led by John Oliver.
Levine conducts the Tanglewood Music Center Orchestra in Tchaikovsky's Eugene Onegin for the 2008 Leonard Bernstein Memorial Concert on August 2 (not to be confused with the aforementioned Bernstein tribute). Marking the latest of many collaborations with the Tanglewood Music Center Fellows, the performance will star Ren_e Fleming (Tatiana), tenor Ram‹n Vargas (Lensky), baritone Peter Mattei (Onegin), and bass Vitalij Kowaljow (Prince Gremin), all joined by the Festival Chorus under Oliver.
The festival's all-Beethoven weekend (August 22-23) kicks off with the Mass in C, featuring conductor Rafael Fr‹hbeck de Burgos and the BSO, soprano Hei-Kyung Hong, mezzo-soprano Kristine Jepson, tenor Richard Croft, bass-baritone Hanno M‹ller-Brachmann and the Festival Chorus; the concert concludes with the Fifth Symphony. The next day, Christoph von Dohnšnyi leads the orchestra in the Second and Third Symphonies.
The all-Mozart weekend (August 8-10) opens with Andrew Davis and the BSO in the Symphony No. 39; Masonic Funeral Music, K. 477; Piano Concerto in A, K. 414 (with soloist Leon Fleisher) and the Horn Concerto No. 3 (with BSO principal horn player James Sommerville). Hans Graf and the orchestra follow with a Saturday program featuring soprano Andrea Rost and pianist Andr_ Previn in Mozart's Ch'io mi scordi di te ... Non temer amato bene, and violinist Stefan Jackiw and violist Lawrence Power in Sinfonia concertante, K.364.
Previn rounds out the Mozart weekend, conducting the BSO in a Sunday performance of the Violin Concerto No. 2 (with Gil Shaham), Non pi‹, Tutto ascoltai...Non temer amato bene (Shaham and Rost), Flute Concerto No. 1 (BSO principal flutist Elizabeth Rowe) and the Symphony No. 38, Prague. The Leonard Bernstein tribute concert (August 17) will be presented by the Boston Pops Orchestra under Keith Lockhart, with Broadway star Brian Stokes Mitchell.
Tanglewood's Festival of Contemporary Music (FCM), directed by Levine, will honor future centenarian Elliott Carter (he turns 100 December 11, 2008) over five days starting July 20. The composer himself is expected to attend the festival, which has three orchestral programs, including the BSO's first-ever complete FCM performance.
Tanglewood Music Center (TMC) kicks off the celebrations with Carter's Call for two trumpets and horn; Oliver Knussen, leads the TMC Fellows in Carter's ensemble pieces Asko Concerto, Luimeni and Refl_xions, and conducts Charles Rosen, Ursula Oppens, and the Fellows in the Double Concerto for piano, harpsichord, and chamber orchestra.
Other highlights of the celebration include the world premieres of Carter's Sound Fields for string orchestra and Mad Regales for solo voices, both TMC commissions. Receiving its American premiere is Mosaici with BSO principal harpist Ann Hobson Pilot and the Fellows; the work is a co-commission of the BSO and the Nash Ensemble of London.
Also programmed are Carter's Variations for Orchestra, Dialogues for piano and orchestra with soloist, Clarinet Concerto, Matribute, Piano Sonata, Night Fantasies, Cello Concerto and three evenings of chamber music. These concerts will feature, among others, Oppens, Rosen, conductor Stefan Asbury, the New Fromm Players, pianist Nicholas Hodges, BSO associate principal clarinetist Thomas Martin and cellist Fred Sherry.
Carter himself will participate in a panel discussion with Levine and moderated by TMC director Ellen Highstein. He'll appear again on FCM's final day in a July 24 interview with reitred Boston Globe music critic Richard Dyer. Both events will take place in Ozawa Hall.
FCM will end with Levine leading the BSO in Carter's Boston Concerto, Three Illusions for Orchestra, the Horn Concerto (with Sommerville) and Symphonia: Sux fluxae pretium spei.
The Tanglewood Festival finale on August 24 will feature Dohnšnyi, soprano Christiane Oelze, mezzo-soprano Lilli Paasikivi, tenor Jorma Silvasti, bass-baritone Hanno M‹ller-Brachmann, and the Festival Chorus in Beethoven's Ninth Symphony.
Also worth noting are the Beaux Arts Trio's final Tanglewood appearances (August 20 and 21), an all-Brahms concert with pianist Yefim Bronfman (July 25), the Tanglewood premiere of Harbison's Symphony No. 5 (July 18), a pair of James Taylor concerts (July 3 and 4), a premiere by the Mark Morris Dance Group (June 26 and 27), Yo-Yo Ma in Lalo's Cello Concerto (August 3) and the Kronos Quartet (August 14).
Details of the Tanglewood Jazz Festival, running August 29-31, will be forthcoming.
The BSO also announced today that Bank of America will be the exclusive season sponsor for Tanglewood from 2008-2012, marking the festival's first long-term, multi-year season sponsorship.