New book offers visual history of Pittsburgh Symphony

Posted on: March 7, 2012

“The illustrious history of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra is now an illustrated one,” writes Andrew Druckenbrod in Wednesday’s (3/7) Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “The orchestra has just released ‘Play On,’ a 212-page, coffee-table book filled with old photographs and information that tracks the group from 1896 and the founding of its predecessor, the Pittsburgh Orchestra, to today. Begun by the late Hax McCullough and finished by Mary Brignano, it gives ample space to each music director’s tenure, lists every member in its history and gives a comprehensive look at the orchestra. It also has quite a few did-you-know facts. … Only three U.S. cities—New York, Boston and Chicago—had permanent orchestras when the Pittsburgh Orchestra was founded in 1896. A 10-concert subscription that first season cost $5-$10. … Gustav Mahler, a favorite composer of current PSO music director Manfred Honeck, conducted in Pittsburgh once. In 1910 (a year before he died), Mahler led the New York Philharmonic at Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Hall in Oakland. It was the first concert presented by a group that brought in orchestras after the Pittsburgh Orchestra went bankrupt in 1910. It re-formed as the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra in 1926.”

Posted March 7, 2012