San Francisco turns out to celebrate Michael Tilson Thomas’s 70th

Posted on: January 20, 2015

“The San Francisco Symphony threw a party Thursday at Davies Symphony Hall for its man in blue, Michael Tilson Thomas, not only to wish him a felicitous 70th birthday, but to mark his 20th anniversary as the Symphony music director,” writes Leah Garchik in Saturday’s (1/17) San Francisco Chronicle (subscription required). His sport jacket featured his initials “emblazoned in sequins on the back, bars of music embroidered down the sleeves.… The SoundBox, the new performance space where guests dined and gathered postconcert for the after-party, feels happening, hip, pleasingly raw.” Among those at the celebrations were California State Senator Mark Leno; Ron George, retired chief justice of the California Supreme Court; Nancy and Paul Pelosi; Jerry Brown and Anne Gust Brown; Tilson Thomas’s husband, Joshua Robison, whom he married in November; Symphony President John Goldman and his wife, Marcia; Kennedy Center President Deborah Rutter; pianists Yuja Wang and Emanuel Ax; and rock musicians Boz Scaggs, Elvis Costello, Phil Lesh, and Lars Ulrich, who performed. Gifts were presented “by board President Sakurako Fisher and her predecessors, Goldman and Nancy Bechtle. In addition to the jacket” and a framed letter from President Barak Obama “there were two pairs of briefs, one Mad Bum and one MTT MVP.”

Posted January 20, 2015

Photo of Michael Tilson Thomas by Stephen Lam / San Francisco Chronicle