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Tanglewood 2023, with the BSO, the Boston Pops, and More

a collage of six musicians featured during the 2023 Tanglewood season, including conductors Xian Zhang, Andris Nelsons, Keith Lockhart, Susanna Mälkki, and Thomas Wilkins, and violinist Hilary Hahn
Zhang: B Ealovega; Nelsons: Marco Borggreve; Hahn: OJ Slaughter; Lockhart: Marco Borggreve; Mälkki: Jiyang Chen; Wilkins: Kaylor Management
Clockwise from top left: conductor Xian Zhang; BSO Music Director Andris Nelsons; violinist Hilary Hahn; Boston Pops Conductor Keith Lockhart; conductor Susanna Mälkki; BSO Youth and Family Concerts Conductor Thomas Wilkins

The Boston Symphony Orchestra has announced its schedule for the 2023 season at its summer home of Tanglewood. The season includes eight weekends of concerts at the Koussevitzky Music Shed by the BSO, the Boston Pops, and the Tanglewood Music Center Orchestra, with particular highlights including dance, opera, and film. In addition, a full schedule of concerts and events is planned for the Tanglewood Music Center and the Tanglewood Learning Institute, at Seiji Ozawa Hall and the Linde Center for Music and Learning.

BSO Music Director Andris Nelsons leads eight Boston Symphony concerts at the Shed, beginning with Opening Night at Tanglewood, a program on July 7 that features pianist Daniil Trifonov in Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 3 and Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 4. Hilary Hahn is the soloist in Brahms’s Violin Concerto on Sunday, July 9, part of a program that also includes works by Iman Habibi and Jessie Montgomery, both commissioned by the BSO.

Other works to be conducted by Nelsons include a concert performance of Mozart’s opera Così fan tutte on July 15, featuring soprano Nicole Cabell and mezzo-soprano Kate Lindsey, and, on July 16, Carl Orff’s Carmina burana. Both concerts also feature the Tanglewood Festival Chorus. Later in the summer, Nelsons conducts John Williams’s Violin Concerto No. 2 on August 11, with soloist Anne-Sophie Mutter; Shostakovich’s Cello Concerto No. 1 on August 12, with soloist Yo-Yo Ma; Saint-Saëns’s Piano Concerto No. 5, “Egyptian,” and Gershwin’s Piano Concerto in F on August 18, both with soloist Jean-Yves Thibaudet; and Tchaikovksy’s Violin Concerto on August 19, with soloist Leonidas Kavakos.

The BSO will also perform with several guest conductors. Xian Zhang makes her BSO debut on July 21, conducting Copland’s Appalachian Spring with Nimbus Dance. On July 23, Thomas Wilkins conducts a new mandolin concerto called Blue Ridge, with soloist and composer Jeff Midkiff. Giancarlo Guerrero conducts Julia Wolfe’s Her Story, with Lorelei Ensemble, on July 28, along with Mahler’s Symphony No. 1. Dima Slobodeniouk conducts two BSO concerts, on July 29 and August 4.

BSO Assistant Conductor Anna Rakitina leads the orchestra for the last time in that role on July 30 in a program that includes Paganini’s Violin Concerto No. 1, with soloist Joshua Bell, as well as a suite from Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet. On August 6, Kazuki Yamada makes his BSO debut in a program that includes Berlioz’s Symphonie fantastique. And on August 12, Susanna Mälkki conducts Bartók’s Concerto for Orchestra, along with Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 9, with soloist Seong-Jin Cho.

The Boston Pops plays an expanded role in the 2023 season, beginning on July 8, when Keith Lockhart leads a new concert version of the Broadway hit Ragtime. On July 14, Lockhart conducts “Two Pianos: Who Could Ask for Anything More?”, an All-Gershwin program featuring vocalist and pianist Michael Feinstein and pianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet. "John Williams’s Film Night" returns to the Shed on August 5, with conductors John Williams and David Newman. The Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra brings more of Williams’s music to the stage on August 26, in the form of the score to Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, in a live accompaniment to the movie as it’s shown in the Shed. And Lockhart leads the Pops Esplanade Orchestra again on August 27 in "Star Wars: The Story in Music."

Susanna Mälkki also leads the Tanglewood Music Center Orchestra in Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 on August 20, taking on a venerable Tanglewood tradition while the Boston Symphony departs on a European tour. Soloists include soprano Amanda Majeski, mezzo-soprano J’Nai Bridges, tenor Stephen Costello, and bass Ryan Speedo Green, along with the Tanglewood Festival Chorus.

TMC concerts during the summer also include orchestra performances led by Andris Nelsons, Xian Zhang, Dima Slobodeniouk, and Dame Jane Glover, as well as TMC Conducting Fellows and the head of the TMC conducting program, Stefan Asbury. In addition, the Fellows of the TMC perform several chamber music concerts throughout the summer, starting with the String Quartet Marathon on July 1.

The TMC’s Festival of Contemporary Music takes place July 27 through July 31, curated by four composers: Reena Esmail, Gabriela Lena Frank, Tebogo Monnakgotla, and Anna Thorvaldsdottir. Each curates an individual program, and the FCM culminates in a TMC Orchestra concert, led by Stefan Asbury, that includes works by all four composers.

Guest artists performing in Ozawa Hall during the summer include the Emerson String Quartet on June 28 in their final Tanglewood concert; The Knights, with mandolinist and vocalist Chris Thile, on June 29; vocalist Julia Bullock, on July 13; Philharmonia Baroque, led by Richard Egarr, on July 20, in Handel’s Acis and Galatea; and, on July 26, the Boston Symphony Chamber Players.

Concerts at Ozawa Hall also include the Danish String Quartet on August 2; the Aaron Diehl Trio, in a Bach-inspired jazz program on August 6; cellist Alisa Weilerstein, in a multi-sensory program based on Bach’s cello suites called Fragments 2, on August 9; pianist Bruce Liu on August 16; the Gerald Clayton Trio on August 20; and a program of Broadway favorites with vocalist Kelli O’Hara and pianist Dan Lipton on August 22.

For more information about the 2023 summer season, visit Tanglewood online.