Opinion: Boston Symphony’s BSO NOW concerts offer vision for post-pandemic future

Posted on: December 14, 2020

“The Boston Symphony Orchestra has rolled out a season of video offerings for a virtual audience, which it has dubbed ‘BSO NOW,’ ” writes Zoë Madonna in Friday’s (12/11) Boston Globe. “BSO NOW programs are concerts for the time of coronavirus and all that entails…. The repertoire is for small ensembles … and each concert includes a chamber piece sans conductor and a short video feature…. BSO NOW is the BSO for ‘now’ in another sense of the word…. One of three BSO NOW concerts also puts Black Americans and their music front and center. This program is conducted and warmly annotated by BSO youth and family concerts conductor Thomas Wilkins, who has taken a much more visible role in the organization this year…. It’ll be a happy day when this isolated phase of the ‘now’ belongs firmly to the past, but some elements of BSO NOW should not be left behind…. That includes the focus on music by living composers as well as composers who have been passed over in the mainstream orchestral repertoire; the greater context given to the pieces; the welcoming, unpresumptuous atmosphere—all of these are essential not just for this now, but for when the future becomes now.”