Michael Tilson Thomas to conduct National Symphony in his own music, plus Copland, Ruggles, Mahler

Posted on: March 9, 2022

“Last week, the conductor [Michael Tilson Thomas] issued a statement providing additional details about his ongoing treatment for … glioblastoma multiforme, an aggressive type of brain cancer,” writes Michael Andor Brodeur in Sunday’s (3/6) Washington Post. “The statement also announced the end of his tenure as artistic director of the New World Symphony…. ‘My return to performing these last months has been very special,’ he wrote, referring to recent engagements with the New York Philharmonic, the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the San Francisco Symphony…. [During] a two-week visit to Washington … he’ll lead the National Symphony Orchestra in two programs that can only be described as extremely MTT. On March 25 and 26, he conducts an evening bookended by Carl Ruggles’s ‘Angels’ … and Aaron Copland’s … ‘Appalachian Spring.’ At the program’s core is MTT’s own ‘Four Preludes on Playthings of the Wind,’ a work for orchestra and ‘bar band’ based on a 1922 poem by Carl Sandburg [also featuring] soprano Measha Brueggergosman—who will appear for these concerts along with soprano Mikaela Bennett and mezzo-soprano Kara Dugan. And on March 31 and April 1, he’ll [conduct] Mahler’s sprawling Symphony No. 2—the ‘Resurrection.’ ”