Tonight's concert, conducted by principal guest conductor Colin Davis, features Mozart's 31st Symphony ("Paris") and Haydn's 103rd Symphony ("Drumroll"). Mezzo-soprano Lorraine Hunt Lieberson, making her Philharmonic debut, sings the aria "De, per questo" from Mozart's La clemenza di Tito and the Britten cantata Phaedra, in its first-ever performance by the Philharmonic.
The concert extends the Philharmonic's own world record for the most performances by an orchestra‹a record the orchestra has held, by its own reckoning, since the 1980s, when it passed the 10,000 mark. The Philharmonic is also the oldest orchestra in the United States and one of the oldest continuously operating orchestras in the world.
For the first time, the Philharmonic's feat has been recognized by Guinness World Records, which has published an annual guide to world records since 1955.
According to the Philharmonic, its 14,000 performances have included 485 world premieres and 443 American premieres.