For the past 25 years, Micheal Tilson Thomas has been leading the San Francisco Symphony through music and events that has touched hundreds of thousands of people. Last year it was announced that he would conclude his distinguished tenure. “Looking back over these decades I am filled with gratitude for the extraordinary artistic partnership I have had with the members of the Orchestra and for the warm and generous style of music making we have shared with all of our audiences,” said Michael Tilson Thomas.
Since the announcement, we’ve been wondering who will be stepping up to the podium as the 12th Music Director… Today, we are so excited to announce that it will be ESA-PEKKA SALONEN!
Esa-Pekka Salonen is a revered favorite of orchestral audiences and has a special place in the hearts of any Los Angeles Philharmonic fan since his appointment as Music Director with the philharmonic from 1992-2009. He was instrumental in opening the Gehry-designed Walt Disney Hall and brought the philharmonic international success by championing new music and programming concerts that engaged the community.
He is also a composer (among many talents)! Watch the video above to find out his inspiration behind “Wing on Wing” that was created to celebrate the Walt Disney Hall…
According the the San Francisco Symphony, Salonen will lead the SFS January 18–20, 2019 in a program featuring the SFS premiere of Icelandic composer Anna Thorvaldsdottir’s Metacosmos, R. Strauss’ Also Sprach Zarathustra, and Sibelius’Four Legends from the Kalevala. He will return as Music Director Designate in the 2019–20 season to conduct at least two weeks of programs.
In September 2020, Salonen begins his tenure as Music Director with an initial five-year contract, conducting the SFS in six subscription weeks and on a tour of Asia. Beginning in the 2021–22 season, Salonen will conduct 12 to 14 weeks each season. He will conclude his tenure as Principal Conductor and Artistic Advisor for London’s Philharmonia Orchestra in 2021.
Tonight we will be going to the Davies Symphony Hall to meet Salonen and get the inside scoop on his thoughts about his new position with the San Francisco Symphony! More to come…