Michael Tilson Thomas
American conductor
Michael Tilson Thomas
Michael Tilson Thomas is an American conductor, pianist and composer. He is currently music director of the San Francisco Symphony, and artistic director of the New World Symphony Orchestra.
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No Shortcuts For Yuja Wang, The World's Greatest Living Pianist
Huffington Post - 9 days
Yuja Wang was still an undergraduate at Curtis when she got the call: piano soloist Murray Perahia was under the weather. Could she jump on a plane to southern California and perform the next day with the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields? She could, and she did. The pianist, barely 22, played with authority and sensitivity, wowing the musically literate in the Orange County audience (yes, there are some even in Costa Mesa). She also astonished the ensemble's legendary conductor, Sir Neville Marriner. The audience was treated to the unique tableau of this towering figure on the music scene, 82 and approaching retirement, gazing with fascination at a young woman in the first throes of her career playing breathtaking, breakneck encores. Wang captivated another top conductor, Michael Tilson Thomas, at another impromptu performance, this time at Carnegie Hall, filling in for yet another ailing soloist. Her playing moved Thomas, a mentor figure in Wang's career, literal ...
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Huffington Post article
Here are the Rams' and 49ers' inactive players
LATimes - about 2 months
Live updates: Rams 0, 49ers 0, in the first quarter Dec. 24, 2016, 1:38 p.m. Join Lindsey Thiry for live updates throughout the game. Dec. 24, 2016, 12:03 p.m. Here are the Rams' and 49ers' inactive players Lindsey Thiry Rams' inactive players: Receiver Michael Thomas Quarterback Case Keenum Defensive...
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LATimes article
The Life and Death of a Once Great Newspaper
Huffington Post - 2 months
Out of the depths of a scary stock market crash in 1987 emerged a salmon colored weekly newspaper, The New York Observer, that animated and chronicled New York's halls of power for almost three decades until its sad death last month. It would probably be unfair to say that the Observer is the first media casualty of the Trump era, but you wouldn't be that far off - the print edition of The Observer, owned by Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner, was shut down the same week as the stunning presidential victory. I have marveled at the small but influential newspaper's arc for the last 30 years from a unique vantage point - first as an editorial competitor, then as someone who The Observer tried to hire, then as a publishing competitor and also as someone who bid to buy it in 2006 when Kushner bested my company's offer by quite a few million dollars. The Observer's death has not received nearly enough ink (or pixels) this past month. The weekly had outsize influence despite its limite ...
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Huffington Post article
Grammy Nominations 2017 Include Beyoncé And Adele
Huffington Post - 3 months
Awards season is about to begin and music’s biggest night will be here before you know it. On Tuesday morning, the Recording Academy announced the nominees for the 59th annual Grammy Awards.  Last year’s Best New Artist, Meghan Trainor, got things rolling by revealing the general field awards on “CBS This Morning,” and more nominations were announced throughout the day.  Beyoncé leads with nine nominations, while Drake and Rihanna follow close behind with eight each. Meanwhile, Chance the Rapper is nominated for seven awards and Adele earned herself five noms.  Head over to Grammy.com for a full list of all the nominations for 2017: Album Of The Year: 25 — Adele Lemonade — Beyoncé Purpose — Justin Bieber Views — Drake A Sailor’s Guide To Earth — Sturgill Simpson   Song Of The Year: “Formation”— Khalif Brown, Asheton Hogan, Beyoncé Knowles, Michael L. Williams II, songwriters (Beyoncé) “Hello” — Adele Adkins & Greg Kurstin, songwriters (Adele) “I Took A Pill In I ...
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Huffington Post article
A 'Wonderful Town' in search of wonder
LATimes - 3 months
The centennial of Leonard Bernstein’s birth is not until the summer after next, but the West Coast has already gotten a jump-start over Broadway with the musicals. Michael Tilson Thomas last summer conducted a semi-staged version of “On the Town” with the San Francisco Symphony, while Gustavo Dudamel...
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LATimes article
Kate Upton Calls Miami Dolphins National Anthem Protest 'Horrific'
Huffington Post - 5 months
function onPlayerReadyVidible(e){'undefined'!=typeof HPTrack&&HPTrack.Vid.Vidible_track(e)}!function(e,i){if(e.vdb_Player){if('object'==typeof commercial_video){var a='',o='m.fwsitesection='+commercial_video.site_and_category;if(a+=o,commercial_video['package']){var c='&m.fwkeyvalues=sponsorship%3D'+commercial_video['package'];a+=c}e.setAttribute('vdb_params',a)}i(e.vdb_Player)}else{var t=arguments.callee;setTimeout(function(){t(e,i)},0)}}(document.getElementById('vidible_1'),onPlayerReadyVidible); Kate Upton called out four Miami Dolphins players who refused to stand during the national anthem on Sunday, the 15-year anniversary of Sept. 11. The model said on Twitter that the behavior was “unacceptable” and later added that the protest was a “disgrace to those people who have served and currently serve our country.” This is unacceptable. You should be proud to be an American. Especially on 9/11 when we should support each other. https://t.co/qFozw ...
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Huffington Post article
Amanda Newberg, Michael Thomas
NYTimes - 7 months
The couple met online.
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NYTimes article
Jay Armstrong Johnson - In Bernstein's 'On the Town' - This Week with SF Symphony
Huffington Post - 9 months
Michael Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony will present Leonard Bernstein's On the Town in a semi-staged concert version this week at Davies Hall. There will be four performances, 5/25-26 and 5/28-29. The cast includes members from the 2014/15 Broadway Production - Clyde Alves (Ozzie), Jay Armstrong Johnson (Chip), Tony Yazbeck (Gabey), Megan Fairchild (Ivy), and Alysha Umphress (Hildy). The cast also includes opera star Isabel Leonard (Claire), Shuler Hensley (Pitkin), Sheri Greenawald (Madame Dilly), and Peabody Southwell (Diana Dream/Dolores). I spoke to Jay Armstrong Johnson shortly after his acclaimed appearance in New York at Feinstein's/54 Below. It was a sell-out. "The show was recorded for a live album. Right now we're working on getting it mastered and produced. Hopefully, it will be available in the fall. It was a completely eclectic set. My inspiration is a monologue that Whoopi Goldberg delivers in Sister Act 2. She teaches her music class the word 'eclectic' ...
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Huffington Post article
Review: San Francisco Symphony at Carnegie Hall
NYTimes - 10 months
Michael Tilson Thomas led the symphony in a program focused on overlooked Copland works.
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NYTimes article
Asking Whether Copland’s Abstruse Works are the Exception or the Rule
NYTimes - 10 months
This question will be raised once more on Wednesday, when Michael Tilson Thomas leads the San Francisco Symphony in a triptych of his thornier works at Carnegie Hall.
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NYTimes article
Orchestras From San Francisco and Baltimore Come to Carnegie
NYTimes - 11 months
Michael Tilson Thomas and Marin Alsop bring their orchestras to New York.
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NYTimes article
New Video Shows Man Had Both Hands In Air When Fatally Shot By Cops
Huffington Post - about 1 year
A bystander's video newly released by Texas authorities this week shows that a man who was killed by police in August had both hands raised in the air before being shot.  On Wednesday, a grand jury voted not to indict the two Bexar County officers involved in the killing of 41-year-old Gilbert Flores in San Antonio, NBC News reported. Police responded to a domestic disturbance call on Aug. 28. On a recording of the 911 call obtained by local TV station WOAI, the suspect's mother says her son has gone "crazy" after assaulting his wife. In the background, Flores can be heard suggesting "suicide by cop." (function(){var src_url="https://spshared.5min.com/Scripts/PlayerSeed.js?playList=519052562&height=&width=100&sid=577&origin=SOLR&videoGroupID=155847&relatedNumOfResults=100&responsive=true&ratio=wide&align=center&relatedMode=2&relatedBottomHeight=60&companionPos=&hasCompanion=false&autoStart=false&colo ...
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Huffington Post article
A Conversation With Pianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet -- This Week With San Francisco Symphony
Huffington Post - almost 2 years
Pianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet joins Michael Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony this week in four performances of Leonard Bernstein's Symphony No. 2: The Age of Anxiety. Beginning Thursday, May 7 through Sunday, May 10, the program includes Mahler's Symphony No. 4 and features soprano Susanna Phillips in the fourth movement - a song, "Das himmlische Leben" (The Heavenly Life). Its text is an innocent's depiction of Heaven where earthly concerns are of no concern. "We lead angelic lives, yet have a merry time of it besides. We dance and we spring, We skip and we sing." A far cry, as it were, from Bernstein's literary source - the epic and ponderous self-searching stanzas of W.H. Auden's 1947 poem, The Age of Anxiety. "This piece isn't programmed very often," said Jean-Yves Thibaudet. JEAN-YVES THIBAUDET. Photo, Decca / Kasskara "I think it's one of Bernstein's great, really great pieces of music. A lot of people only know the lighter side of Bernstein, what they've seen in ...
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Huffington Post article
Tears for Walter Scott, fatally shot by police after fleeing a traffic stop
Yahoo News - almost 2 years
Benita Dinkins Robinson, of Lee County, S.C., speaks through a bullhorn during a rally protesting the shooting death of Walter Scott, Friday, April 10, 2015, in North Charleston, S.C. Scott was killed by a North Charleston police officer after a traffic stop on Saturday. The officer, Michael Thomas Slager, has been charged with murder. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
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Yahoo News article
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Michael Tilson Thomas
  • 2014
    Tilson Thomas is openly gay and lives in San Francisco with his partner of thirty years, Joshua Robison. They married on November 2, 2014.
    More Details Hide Details Tilson Thomas has conducted a wide variety of music and is a particular champion of modern American works. He is also renowned for his interpretation of the works of Gustav Mahler; he has recorded all nine Mahler symphonies and other major orchestral works with the San Francisco Symphony. These recordings have been released on the high-resolution audio format Super Audio CD on the San Francisco Symphony's own recording label. Tilson Thomas is also known as a premier interpreter of the works of Aaron Copland, Charles Ives, and Steve Reich. A sampling of Tilson Thomas's own compositions include From the Diary of Anne Frank (1990), Shówa/Shoáh (1995, memorializing the fiftieth anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima), Poems of Emily Dickinson (2002) and Urban Legend (2002). Tilson Thomas has also been devoted to music education. He leads a series of education programs titled Keeping Score which offers insight into the lives and works of great composers, and led a series of Young People's Concerts with the New York Philharmonic. Tilson Thomas also founded the New World Symphony in Miami in 1987. Most recently, Tilson Thomas has led two incarnations of the YouTube Symphony Orchestra, which brings young musicians from around the world together for a week of music making and learning.
    In October 2014, Tilson Thomas was at the center of a dispute involving a child in the audience at a New World Symphony concert.
    More Details Hide Details Tilson Thomas halted a performance of Brahms's Piano Concerto No. 2 and asked a young, restless girl and her mother to change seats because the child was becoming a distraction to the conductor. "I asked the mother in a very calm and respectful voice, 'I'm sorry, it's just hard for us to keep our concentration," the conductor said. " Would you mind moving to one side?'" The unidentified patrons instead left the hall. The incident was widely discussed on social media and reported by several news outlets.
  • 2013
    He revisited the Bowl again in 2013 performing Mahler's Second Symphony, when another noisy helicopter flew over the venue.
    More Details Hide Details Tilson Thomas stopped the orchestra, but then later continued, most likely to prevent another abrupt ending to the performance.
  • 2011
    In 2011 he hosted a concert stage show celebrating his grandparents and the music of American Yiddish theatre The Thomashefskys: Music and Memories of a Life in the Yiddish Theater, which aired in 2012 on the PBS series "Great Performances."
    More Details Hide Details Tilson Thomas hosts the Keeping Score television series, nine one-hour documentary-style episodes and eight live-concert programs, which began airing nationally on PBS stations in early November 2006. He and the San Francisco Symphony have examined the lives and music of Gustav Mahler, Dmitri Shostakovich, Charles Ives, Hector Berlioz, Aaron Copland, Igor Stravinsky, Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky, and Ludwig van Beethoven. Keeping Score discography Tilson Thomas has made more than 120 recordings, including works by Bach, Mahler, Beethoven, Prokofiev and Stravinsky as well as his pioneering work with the music of Charles Ives, Carl Ruggles, Steve Reich, John Cage, Ingolf Dahl, Morton Feldman, George Gershwin, John McLaughlin and Elvis Costello. He recently finished recording the complete orchestral works of Gustav Mahler with the San Francisco Symphony. Grammy Award for Best Orchestral Performance Grammy Award for Best Classical Album
    On March 20, 2011 Tilson Thomas also conducted the "YTSO2" (YouTube Symphony Orchestra 2) in Sydney Australia.
    More Details Hide Details His first television appearances were in the CBS Young People's Concerts with the New York Philharmonic, airing from 1971–1977. He has also made regular appearances on PBS, with broadcasts featuring Tilson Thomas airing from 1972 through 2008. Eight episodes of WNET's Great Performances series have featured Tilson Thomas. He has also been featured on Japan's NHK and the UK's BBC many times in the last three decades.
    He played an instrumental role in the development of the Frank Gehry-designed New World Center in Miami Beach, which opened in 2011. (The two had personal history, with Gehry sometimes having baby-sat for Tilson Thomas back when both were growing up in Los Angeles.)
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  • 2009
    Tilson Thomas joined up with YouTube in 2009 to help create the YouTube Symphony Orchestra, an orchestra whose members were selected from 30 countries based on more than 3,000 video auditions on YouTube.
    More Details Hide Details The Orchestra, as well as such soloists as Mason Bates, Measha Brueggergosman, Joshua Roman, Gil Shaham, Yuja Wang, Anna Larsen, Charlie Lui, and Derek Wang, participated in a classical music summit in New York City at the Juilliard School over three days. The event culminated in a live concert at Carnegie Hall on Wednesday, April 15. The concert was later made available on YouTube.
  • 2005
    In April 2005 he conducted the Carnegie Hall premiere of The Thomashefskys: Music and Memories of a Life in the Yiddish Theater, partly as a tribute to his own grandparents.
    More Details Hide Details The piece has since been performed with numerous symphonies across the country, including the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, LA Philharmonic, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Philadelphia Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, New World Symphony and San Francisco Symphony. It has also been recorded for future broadcast on PBS.
  • 2000
    In June 2000, Michael Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony presented a landmark 12-concert American Mavericks Festival, recognizing the innovative works of 20th century American composers.
    More Details Hide Details Additional season-ending festivals in Davies Symphony Hall have included explorations of the music of Wagner, Prokofiev, Mahler, Stravinsky, Beethoven and Weill, including semi-staged productions of Rimsky-Korsakov's opera-ballet Mlada, Beethoven's Fidelio, and Wagner's The Flying Dutchman.
  • 1995
    During his first season with the San Francisco Symphony, Tilson Thomas included a work by an American composer on nearly every one of his programs. His 1995–96 season ended with "An American Festival," a two-week celebration of American music.
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    Tilson Thomas became the San Francisco Symphony's 11th Music Director in 1995.
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  • 1988
    From 1988 to 1995, Tilson Thomas was principal conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra.
    More Details Hide Details Since 1995, he has held the title of principal guest conductor with the LSO, with whom he has recorded and toured extensively.
  • 1987
    In 1987 Tilson Thomas founded the New World Symphony in Miami Beach, Florida, an orchestral academy for gifted young musicians whose stated mission is "to prepare highly-gifted graduates of distinguished music programs for leadership roles in orchestras and ensembles around the world."
    More Details Hide Details He is currently the academy's artistic director.
  • 1981
    From 1981 to 1985 he was principal guest conductor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra.
    More Details Hide Details During a performance of Mahler's Eighth Symphony at the Hollywood Bowl, a helicopter noisily flew over the venue, disrupting the concert. This is when Tilson Thomas famously stormed offstage in the middle of the performance. In 2007, almost 20 years after that performance, he revisited the Hollywood Bowl leading the Los Angeles Philharmonic in that same work, announcing jokingly, "Now where were we?".
  • 1974
    He originally made his debut with the orchestra in January 1974 conducting Mahler's Symphony No. 9.
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  • 1971
    Between 1971 and 1977, he also conducted the series of Young People's Concerts with the New York Philharmonic.
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    He was music director of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra from 1971 to 1979.
    More Details Hide Details He made recordings for Columbia Records in Buffalo.
  • 1969
    After winning the Koussevitzky Prize at Tanglewood in 1969, Tilson Thomas was named Assistant Conductor of the Boston Symphony Orchestra.
    More Details Hide Details That same year, he made his conducting debut with the Boston Symphony Orchestra, replacing an unwell William Steinberg mid-concert and thereby coming into international recognition at the age of 24. He stayed with the Boston ensemble as an assistant conductor until 1974 and made several recordings with the orchestra for Deutsche Grammophon, which were later reissued on CD.
  • 1968
    From 1968 to 1994, Tilson Thomas was the Music Director of the Ojai Music Festival seven different times.
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  • 1944
    Born in 1944.
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