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Boston Landmarks Orchestra Announces Summer Season

May 16, 2024 | By Stephanie Janes

Boston Landmarks Orchestra Brings Free Orchestral Music to the DCR Hatch Memorial Shell on the Esplanade and Boston Neighborhoods this Summer, June 15-August 21

The free concerts and events bring the joy of live music to Boston audiences and beyond, highlighting community, diversity, and accessibility

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For Immediate Release — May 16, 2024 — Boston Landmarks Orchestra, under the direction of Music Director Christopher Wilkins, is gearing up to offer another season of enchanting musical experiences under the stars in Boston. From the iconic DCR Hatch Memorial Shell to Boston neighborhood venues, the ensemble brings the joy of live orchestral music to audiences of all ages. With a diverse lineup that highlights community, inclusivity, and accessibility, these free concerts promise to be a source of delight and inspiration for all who attend. Landmarks Orchestra invites everyone to join us for an unforgettable summer filled with beautiful music and shared moments of connection.

Music Director Christopher Wilkins says, “It’s always a happy occasion to have the orchestra back together again. There’s nothing like making music on a beautiful summer evening along the banks of the Charles. Our special aim is to connect with people of all backgrounds, Bostonians from a variety of cultural traditions.”

Board Chair Emmett G. Price III adds, “We are tremendously grateful and excited for this substantial commitment from our long-standing partner, Free For All Concert Fund, in bringing exceptional LIVE music to Boston’s historic Hatch Shell. Free for All has signaled our value and our importance to the arts and culture fabric of Greater Boston and we are hopeful that others will join the cause and aid us in accomplishing our courageous and timely mission.”

Regarding the Free for All Concert Fund’s major grant to Boston Landmarks Orchestra, Rev. Dr. Ray Hammond, Chair of the Free for All Concert Fund board, said “Free for All is proud to support the great work of Boston Landmarks Orchestra as it continues to advance the legacy of our mutual founder, the late Maestro Charles Ansbacher. This two-year grant of up to $1.275M allows Landmarks to pursue our shared mission of bringing great music to all the people of Boston for free. We look forward to another memorable summer of beautiful music on the Esplanade.”

For the full season of performances, program notes, and more, visit landmarksorchestra.org.


2024 Summer Concerts and Events

ASL interpreters will be present at many performances; see the website for current details.

A JUNETEENTH CELEBRATION–in partnership with Castle of our Skins
Saturday, June 15, 4 PM ET
The Salvation Army Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center | 650 Dudley Street, Boston
RSVP: https://www.landmarksorchestra.org/events/current-season/juneteenth/

Celebrating Juneteenth, Landmarks Orchestra, in collaboration with Castle of our Skins, starts the 2024 summer season with a performance at the Kroc Center! Featuring works from Eubie Blake, Florence Price, William Grant Still, Jessie Montgomery and more, this concert is a wonderful way to kick off the season and celebrate the works of iconic Black composers. Featuring Castle of our Skins String Quartet, violinist Maxwell Fairman, and soprano Brianna J. Robinson.

Christopher Wilkins, conductor
Brianna J. Robinson, soprano
Maxwell Fairman, violin
Thomas Cooper, violin
Ashleigh Gordon, viola
Francesca McNeeley, cello

Eubie Blake Shuffle Along Overture
Maxwell Fairman Lift Every Voice and String (premiere performance)
Joseph Bologne "Enfin une foule... L’Amour, devient propice" from L'Amant Anonyme      
Samuel Coleridge-Taylor Waltz
Florence Price Adoration
William Grant Still Can’t You Line ‘Em        
Jessie Montgomery Freedom Songs           
Valerie Coleman Umoja
Miles Davis & Bill Evans Blue in Green
James Reese Europe Castle Perfect Trot   


Wednesday, July 24, 7pm ET | Hatch Shell

Our 2024 Esplanade season begins with a spotlight on two of America’s most beloved composers: George Gershwin and John Williams. From the timely Olympic Fanfare to themes from Jaws, E.T.—and a little Star Wars as an encore—the program also includes Jessie Montgomery’s Freedom Songs, based on spirituals, and the vibrant Second Symphony by Boston composer Randall Thompson. Come at 6:30 for a special prelude concert by students of the Four Strings Academy.

Boston Landmarks Orchestra, Christopher Wilkins, conductor
Joelle Lamarre, soprano

George Gershwin Girl Crazy Overture
Jessie Montgomery Freedom Songs
Randall Thompson Symphony No. 2           
John Williams
     Olympic Fanfare and Theme
     The Cowboys
     Music from Jaws
     “Viktor’s Tale” from The Terminal, Rane Moore, clarinet
     “Flying Theme” from E.T.: the Extra-Terrestrial               


Saturday, August 3, 7pm ET | Hatch Shell

The orchestra “sings” in two melodious staples of the symphonic repertoire: Brahms’s Academic Festival Overture and Dvorák’s popular Symphony No. 8. Joel Hoffman’s moving Self-Portrait with Gebirtig features our Principal Cellist, Aron Zelkowicz, as soloist, and Alfvén’s bubbly Midsummer Vigil make this the perfect program for a midsummer Saturday evening.

Boston Landmarks Orchestra, Christopher Wilkins, conductor
Aron Zelkowicz, cello

Johannes Brahms Academic Festival Overture
Hugo Alfvén Midsummer Vigil (Swedish Rhapsody No. 1)  
Joel Hoffman Self-Portrait with Gebirtig, Aron Zelkowicz, cello
Antonín Dvorák Symphony No. 8    


Saturday, August 10, 7pm ET | Hatch Shell

Stay tuned for details about a special concert by one of our musical partners.


Wednesday, August 14, 7pm ET | Hatch Shell
Thursday, August 15, 7:30pm | Hibernian Hall, 184 Dudley Street, Boston
Friday, August 16, 7:30pm | location TBA
Saturday, August 17, 4:00pm | location TBA

Mozart’s energetic Symphony No. 29 and Gershwin’s tropical Cuban Overture set the upbeat tone for this year’s Mozart & More program at the Hatch Shell and in Boston neighborhoods. Violinist Adrian Anantawan will be featured in music by Florence Price and more, while Berklee composer and “Sound Chemist” Val Jeanty brings her own unique works and those of her great-uncle, Occide Jeanty, Haiti’s national composer.

Boston Landmarks Orchestra, Christopher Wilkins, conductor
Adrian Anantawan, violin
Val Jeanty, sound chemist

Wolfgang Amadè Mozart Lucio Silla Overture
Florence Price Adoration
Wolfgang Amadè Mozart Symphony No. 29
Louis Moreau Gottschalk Souvenir de Porto Rico              
Occide Jeanty Quand nos Aïeux brisèrent leurs entraves (When Our Fathers Broke Their Chains)
Val Jeanty Faces
George Gershwin Cuban Overture  


Wednesday, August 21, 7pm ET | Hatch Shell

The familiar melodies of Borodin’s Polovtsian Dances, famously heard in the musical Kismet, open this program of evocative music. Boston-based composer Akram Haddad brings the music of his Arabic heritage, and Rimsky-Korsakov’s lush Sheherazade, a showpiece for orchestra based on the tale of the Arabian Nights, concludes our 2024 Hatch Shell season.

Boston Landmarks Orchestra, Christopher Wilkins, conductor

Alexander Borodin Polovtsian Dances from Prince Igor                 
Gity Razaz
Akram Haddad
Arabic Singers Medley        
Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov

About Boston Landmarks Orchestra

Boston Landmarks Orchestra was founded in 2001 by conductor and community advocate Charles Ansbacher. The orchestra comprises many of the area's finest professional musicians. In its earliest years, the orchestra performed in such historically important settings as Fenway Park, the USS CONSTITUTION pier, Jamaica Pond, Franklin Park, Copley Square, Boston Common, and other landmark locations. Since 2007, its principal home has been at the DCR's Hatch Memorial Shell. For more history visit landmarksorchestra.org.

Major funders of Boston Landmarks Orchestra include the Free for All Concert Fund, The Boston Foundation, Encore Boston Harbor, Liberty Mutual and the Klarman Foundation. These programs are supported in part by grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, Massachusetts Cultural Council, the League of American Orchestras, and the Boston Cultural Council, a local agency which is funded by the Massachusetts Cultural Council and administered by the Mayor's Office of Arts Culture for the City of Boston. WCVB Channel 5 and CRB Classical 99.5 are proud media sponsors.

Press contact: Stephanie Janes, 617-419-0445, stephaniejanespr@gmail.com




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