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The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra's centennial season will be the ninth under the leadership of Musical Director Marin Alsop.

Baltimore Symphony Orchestra unveils centennial season schedule

The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Wednesday announced that its celebratory centennial 2015-2016 season, its ninth under Music Director Marin Alsop, would feature appearances by some of the world’s most renowned artists, premieres of several new works, homecomings for familiar local artists and a recommitment to some longstanding community partnerships.

A high point of the entire 2015-2016 season will be the BSO’s Centennial Celebration Week, Feb. 10-14, 2016, marking the Orchestra’s inaugural concert that took place on Feb. 11, 1916.

The highlight of the Anniversary Week is the 100th Anniversary Concert, to be performed on Feb. 11. The program includes violinist Joshua Bell performing his own unique adaptation of Bernstein’s West Side Story Suite. The program will commemorate the occasion with key moments in the BSO’s history, celebrate the BSO’s current successes, and share glimpses of what the next 100 years may hold.

Students from across Maryland will have the opportunity to sit in on a rehearsal preparing the orchestra for the February 11th 100th Anniversary concert featuring Joshua Bell, a nod to the BSO’s 1916 opening concert which also invited students to attend a rehearsal.

The  season boasts a lineup of some of the world’s most beloved artists, many of whom made their debuts with the BSO or collaborated with the Orchestra early in their careers. Among the guest artists are Lang Lang, Yo-Yo Ma, André Watts, Leon Fleisher, Hilary Hahn, Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg and Music Director Emeritus Yuri Temirkanov

The centennial season will also feature full-evening, semi-staged performances of Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess (with Center Stage) and Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet (Folger Theatre), Copland’s Appalachian Spring in the original choreography by Martha Graham (Baltimore School for the Arts), as well as classic repertoire including the Requiems by Brahms and Verdi, Mahler’s 5th Symphony, An Alpine Symphony and Also sprach Zarathustra by R. Strauss, Holst’s The Planets and the first BSO performances in 50 years of the B-Minor Mass by J.S. Bach.

There will be two new large-scale commissions — a multimedia project by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Kevin Puts and a percussion concerto by James MacMillan — and 10 short Centennial Commissions.

And the season will include  works by six Baltimore-native and –resident composers, 22 works by living composers and 43 works by composers who lived during the last 100 years.

“For 100 years, the BSO has been embedded in the fabric of this community,” Alsop said. “We have become Baltimore’s soundtrack and the inspiration for more than five generations of music-makers and music-lovers. Our legacy runs deep and our roots in communities throughout Maryland run even deeper. This season, we pay homage to that enduring legacy of artistic greatness and community engagement through a season more spectacular, meaningful and innovative than any other in our history. It is our way of saying thank you to the audiences who have supported us and grown with us over time. And it is also our invitation to join us to see what artistic achievements and community milestones the Orchestra’s next 100 years will bring.”

For more information, visit the BSO’s website.