Lorin Maazel - Conductor from 1984 to 1996
Mariss Jansons - Conductor from 1996 to 2004
Manfred Honeck - Conductor from 2008
|City||Pittsburgh, PA, United States|
|Country||United States of America|
The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra is an American orchestra based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Its current music director is Austrian Manfred Honeck, who joined the orchestra in 2008.
The Pittsburgh Symphony has a long and distinguished history of touring both domestically and internationally since 1900. The Pittsburgh Symphony was the first American orchestra to perform at the Vatican in January 2004 for the late Pope John Paul II.
The orchestra was founded by the Pittsburgh Arts Society with conductor Frederic Archer in 1895, who brought with him a number of musicians from the Boston Symphony Orchestra, and led the PSO in its first concert the following year.
In 1898, a man steeped in popular music was chosen to lead the Orchestra. Victor Herbert was best known as a man of the theater and had composed a number of comic operas. Under Herbert’s direction, the Pittsburgh Orchestra played as part of the Pan-American Exposition at the 1901 World's Fair in Buffalo, New York.
Despite lavish praise from critics and a growing national reputation, hard times lay ahead for the Orchestra. The Panic of 1907 had an immediate impact on the ability and the resolve of the wealthy to support cultural organizations throughout the country.
By 1910, the Orchestra's future was in immediate jeopardy. When insufficient funds were forthcoming, the orchestra canceled its upcoming season.
It took 16 years, but on May 2, 1926, the dream of a new Pittsburgh Orchestra finally became reality. The players took part in 14 unpaid rehearsals and contributed $25 each to sponsor a free public concert of the new Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra.
In 1936, the Symphony's concerts are broadcast nationally for the first time. In 1937, the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra engaged renowned German conductor Otto Klemperer to reorganize and expand the Orchestra.
The Pittsburgh Symphony enjoyed 10 prolific years with the legendary Fritz Reiner as music director. Reiner had studied with noted Hungarian composer Béla Bartók and interpreted many of his pieces in Symphony performances. The Orchestra's reputation grew dramatically, netting the ensemble a high-profile recording contract with Columbia and an invitation to perform abroad.
Long acknowledged to be one of America's great orchestras, the Pittsburgh Symphony developed an unrivaled international following during its years under Lorin Maazel.
The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra has embarked on a second century of music making with the support of a devoted and international audience. Wikipedia