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Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and Cincinnati Pops announce Major International Tours in 2017


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CINCINNATI— The Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra (CSO) and the Cincinnati Pops announced highly-anticipated international tours to Asia in March of 2017 with six performances in Hong Kong, Beijing, Shanghai and Taiwan, as well as the CSO undertaking an extensive, eleven-concert tour across Europe over three weeks in August and September. The Orchestra will be on tour for five total weeks in 2017, performing in 12 cities across seven different countries.

“Cincinnati’s orchestra is known throughout the world and it’s an honor for us to be invited to perform in these important cities,” said CSO Music Director Louis Langrée. “We are proud to represent our community and Cincinnati’s vibrant cultural arts scene to audiences across Asia and Europe.”

Announcement marks 50th anniversary of orchestra's historic World Tour

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For Asia, the Orchestra will perform both as the CSO with Mr. Langrée conducting and as the Cincinnati Pops with John Morris Russell conducting. Joining Mr. Langrée and the Orchestra is piano soloist Alexander Gavrylyuk, who most recently performed with the CSO for the prestigious Great Performers series at New York City’s Lincoln Center in January. Mr. Gavrylyuk will be performing George Gershwin’s iconic American classic, Rhapsody in Blue. Additional program information for the Asia Tour will be released will be released at a later date.

The tour begins on March 17 with the CSO performing as part of the prestigious Hong Kong Arts Festival at the HK Cultural Centre Music Hall and continues on March 19 with a performance at Beijing’s Poly Theatre and March 22 with a performance at Shanghai’s Oriental Art Center.

The Orchestra performs as the Cincinnati Pops at the Shanghai Oriental Art Center on March 23, and then heads to Taiwan for two additional concerts as the Cincinnati Pops on March 25 and 26, cities and venues to be announced.

“I’m thrilled for us to share our unique Cincinnati sound with audiences in Asia,” said Mr. Russell. “We’ve sold more than ten million albums over the years, and know that many of our most fervent fans live on the other side of the earth. There is nothing like a live performance of the Cincinnati Pops and CSO, especially when we are sharing the unbridled joy of extraordinary music-making with the world."

The Orchestra last performed in China’s capital city Beijing as the Cincinnati Pops for the Summer Olympics in 2008 and previously toured China as the Pops in 2005.

The CSO will depart for next year’s European tour on August 22 and perform eleven concerts in eight cities across five countries. This tour will include some of the main festivals in Europe. Program information, cities and venues will be announced at a later date. The CSO most recently toured Europe in 2008.

These tour announcements come as the Orchestra celebrates the 50th anniversary of its celebrated World Tour, the first American orchestra tour to be sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, in 1966. Stops on that 40-concert tour included Istanbul, Tel Aviv, Bombay, Athens, Singapore, Hong Kong, Taipei, Tokyo, Seoul and more.

The March 2017 Asia Tour is the first international tour for the Orchestra with Music Director Louis Langrée and Pops Conductor John Morris Russell. The most recent international tour was 2009 with the CSO in Japan. The Orchestra has been touring across the country and around the world for over a century.

Both CSO international tours are made possible by Tom and Dee Stegman and the estate of Chuck Yeiser, and the major underwriter for the Pops appearances in Asia is Edyth B. Lindner. These major underwriters are also joined by the following supporters of the Asia tour: Susan Friedlander; Tom Garber and Family; Flo and Ron Koetters; The Harold C. Schott Foundation/Francie and Tom Hiltz, Trustees; Western Pacific Holdings. Additional underwriters for the European tour are: Sheila and Chris Cole; Tom Garber and Family; David Herriman; Sandra and Stephen Joffe; Marilyn and Jack Osborn; Dianne and J. David Rosenberg; The Harold C. Schott Foundation/Francie and Tom Hiltz, Trustees; Randolph and Sallie Wadsworth.

“Touring is a testament to the Orchestra’s core value to be Cincinnati’s Ambassador and these donors are making these tours possible through their extraordinary generosity,” said CSO President Trey Devey. “They take pride in their Orchestra and want to share the CSO and Pops with the world.”

The Orchestra also receives critical annual support from the Ohio Arts Council, the Louise Dieterle Nippert Musical Arts Fund of the Greenacres Foundation, and the thousands of people who give generously to the ArtsWave Community Campaign.

About the CSO

The Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, which also performs as the Cincinnati Pops, is one of America’s finest and most versatile ensembles. With a determination for greatness and a rich tradition that dates back over 120 years, the internationally acclaimed CSO attracts the best musicians, artists and conductors from around the world to Cincinnati. With new commissions and groundbreaking initiatives like LUMENOCITY®, One City, One Symphony, and the MusicNOW Festival collaboration, the Orchestra is committed to being a place of experimentation.

As Cincinnati’s ambassador, the Orchestra has toured extensively, sold millions of recordings, and reaches millions more annually through radio and television broadcasts. As Cincinnati’s own, the Orchestra’s impact extends far beyond CSO and Pops concerts at Music Hall to the schools, places of worship, and neighborhood centers of a vastly diverse community. The Orchestra also elevates Cincinnati’s vibrant cultural scene by serving as the official orchestra for the Cincinnati Ballet, Cincinnati May Festival, Cincinnati Opera and Cincinnati World Piano Competition.

Louis Langrée began his tenure as the CSO's 13th Music Director in the 2013-2014 season with a celebrated program The New York Times said “deftly combined nods to the orchestra's history, the city's musical life and new music.” Over the Orchestra's 120-year history, it has also been led by Leopold Stokowski, Eugène Ysaÿe, Fritz Reiner, Eugene Goossens, Max Rudolf, Thomas Schippers, Jesús López-Cobos, and Paavo Järvi, among others.

A champion of new music, the Orchestra has given American premieres of works by such composers as Debussy, Ravel, Mahler and Bartók and has commissioned works that have since become mainstays of the classical repertoire, including Copland's Fanfare for the Common Man. The CSO was the first orchestra to be broadcast to a national radio audience (1921) and the third to record (1917). The Orchestra continues to commission new works and to program an impressive array of music. In recent years, the CSO has performed the world premieres of Nico Muhly's Pleasure Ground, David Lang's mountain, Caroline Shaw's Lo and Daniel Bjarnason's Collider as part of the groundbreaking collaboration with the MusicNOW Festival, Cincinnati's premier new music festival, as well as the world premiere of André Previn's Double Concerto. More recent commissions include Gunther Schuller’s Symphonic Triptych, three works set to the poetry of Dr. Maya Angelou by T. J. Cole, Jonathan Bailey Holland and Kristin Kuster, as well three new concertos for orchestra by composers Sebastian Currier, Thierry Escaich and Zhou Tian, which will be released on a commercial recording in November of 2016.

The CSO was the first American orchestra to make a world tour sponsored by the U.S. Department of State and continues to tour domestically and internationally, most recently to Europe in 2008 and to Japan in 2009, including two concerts at Tokyo's Suntory Hall and the CSO's first-ever nationally televised concert in Japan. The CSO has performed at New York's Carnegie Hall 48 times since its debut there in 1917, most recently to rave reviews in May of 2014. In January of 2016, the Orchestra performed at Lincoln Center as part of the invitational Great Performers series.

About the Cincinnati Pops

The Cincinnati Pops, which also performs as the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, is under the direction of John Morris Russell and presents a diverse array of musical styles, all bathed in the world-renowned “Cincinnati Sound.” The Pops was officially founded in 1977 with the late Erich Kunzel, and just since 1980, the Orchestra has sold ten million recordings around the globe.

The growing list of celebrated artists who have collaborated with the Pops include Ella Fitzgerald, Frederica von Stade, Doc Severinsen, Henry Mancini, Aretha Franklin, Mel Tormé, Kristin Chenoweth, Jennifer Holliday, Vanessa Williams, Dave Brubeck, The Temptations, John Williams, Idina Menzel, Rosemary Clooney, Mandy Patinkin, George Takei, Arturo Sandoval, Peter Frampton, Boyz II Men, Bernadette Peters, Lea Salonga, Pink Martini, Megan Hilty, Rosanne Cash, Jason Alexander and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.

The Pops tours nationally and internationally, recently performing in Beijing as part of the Opening Festivities of the 2008 Summer Olympic Games. In 2005, the Pops completed a historic tour to China and Singapore performing in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. The Cincinnati Pops was the first U.S. Pops orchestra to perform in China, and also has appeared to enthusiastic audiences in New York’s Carnegie Hall, in Washington D.C., Japan, Taiwan, and most recently across Florida.

An estimated 30 million people have viewed national telecasts of the Cincinnati Pops on PBS, and the Orchestra has more than 100 available recordings, 55 of which have appeared on the Billboard charts, a record unmatched by any other orchestra. The Pops’ Copland: Music of America won a Grammy in 1997, and four other Pops recordings have been nominated for Grammy Awards.

In 2012, the Pops released its first recording under John Morris Russell, Home for the Holidays, on the Orchestra’s own Fanfare Cincinnati label. Subsequent recordings Superheroes! and Carnival of the Animals reached #8 and #15, respectively, on the Billboard charts. The most recent Pops release, American Originals, received national critical and popular acclaim for its reimagining of the Stephen Foster songbook. In the spring of 2016, the Pops unveiled American Soundscapes, an online video series that features Pops performances captured live that has already reached tens of thousands of viewers around the world.