Category: Press Releases

Leadership gift endows music director’s position

New gift endows music director’s position at Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra


Buffalo, NY — Following the wonderful music with guest artist Renee Fleming and the excitement of the BPO’s Opening Night Gala at Kleinhans Music Hall on Saturday, September 13, BPO Board of Trustees Chair Louis P. Ciminelli announced that the orchestra has received a leadership gift from Angelo and Carol Fatta.This generous gift will endow the Music Director’s position, held by Maestro JoAnn Falletta.

“We are deeply grateful for Ange and Carol’s tremendous gift to the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra,” said Ciminelli. “Ange’s leadership, as former Chair of the Board of Trustees and long-time supporter of the BPO, has helped to ensure a strong financial future for the BPO.”

“I am honored and delighted that Ange and Carol have chosen to endow the Music Director’s position with their wonderful, generous gift,” said Falletta. “I count Ange and Carol among my dearest friends, and it means a great deal to me that they have expressed their passion for our BPO with such a transformative gift. The musicians and I are truly grateful for their thoughtful philanthropy.”

“We are thrilled to support the BPO,” said Ange Fatta. “Carol and I know that all of us here in Western New York are so fortunate to have the BPO driving Buffalo’s musical movement as our treasured cultural asset. Our family is proud of our long and wonderful relationship with JoAnn Falletta and our terrific BPO. We hope others will join us in supporting this world-class orchestra.”

BPO Executive Director Dan Hart said, “Ange and Carol realize the importance of an endowment fund that is continually growing and that it is directly connected to artistic quality and community impact. They are once again among those, leading by example, the effort to secure the orchestra for future generations.”


Alan Parsons Live Project to perform with BPO


Alan Parsons Live Project performs with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra Jan. 30


 Tickets on sale Sept. 6


BUFFALO, NY – For decades, Alan Parsons has earned a reputation as one of rock’s creative geniuses.

Now, this phenomenal artist brings Alan Parsons Live Project to the Buffalo Philharmonic. Part of the BPO Rocks series, the concert takes place at 8 p.m. Friday, Jan. 30 at Kleinhans Music Hall, 3 Symphony Circle, Buffalo. Tickets go on sale at 9 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 6.

Alan Parsons started his career at London’s Abbey Road Studios. As a sound engineer, he worked on the final two Beatles albums and made his name working on the classic Pink Floyd album “Dark Side of the Moon.” After many successful experiences in album production for an array of artists, he formed the Alan Parsons Project in 1975. The group released a string of critically acclaimed albums in the 1970s and 1980s. Their major hit, “Sirius,” served as the theme for the Chicago Bulls, the walk-on music for the New Orleans Saints at the 2010 Super Bowl, and has been heard in many movies and at countless sporting events.

Parsons continues to push the envelope as both a musician and a producer. Recent years have seen him delve into electronica, collaborate with musicians from the band Yes and with Mexican superstar Alecks Syntek, and produce albums from his Santa Barbara studio for ukulele virtuoso Jake Shimabukuro, among others. He shares his engineering and production expertise through a 2010 three-DVD set and through engineering master classes throughout the world.

Tickets for Alan Parsons Live Project with the Buffalo Philharmonic range from $39 to $59. VIP tickets are available for $75. This concert replaces the previously-scheduled date with Randy Newman, as the show is now cancelled. Other concerts on the BPO Rocks series are The Hit Men on Oct. 25; The Music of Led Zeppelin on Nov. 7; A Tribute to Neil Diamond on Nov. 22; Blood Sweat & Tears on Feb. 28; and The Music of Michael Jackson on May 1. Series subscriptions are available and save 25 percent off the single ticket price. For tickets or subscriptions, call (716) 885-5000, or visit or the BPO Box Office at Kleinhans Music Hall.

BPO begins new season

BPO begins new season


Renee Fleming, Matthew Morrison, Bartok and Chihuly among early highlights


BUFFALO, NY – The Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra begins its 2014-15 season on Sept. 13, with a new Associate Conductor, many outstanding guest artists, and collaborations slated with many of the area’s leading cultural and educational institutions. A recording project for Naxos will shed light on the works of the little-known French composer Florent Schmitt, and the orchestra will continue its search for a new pops conductor and concertmaster.

Gala Season Opening with Renee Fleming

The season kicks off with a gala and performance by soprano Renee Fleming on Sept. 13, conducted by JoAnn Falletta. Fleming, a Rochester native, is the winner of a National Medal of Arts, and a four-time Grammy winner. Earlier this year, she became the first classical singer to perform the national anthem before the Super Bowl. Fleming will perform a mix of operatic favorites and popular works on this sure-to-sell-out program. Surrounding Fleming’s performance will be the BPO’s annual gala, sponsored by the Louis P. Ciminelli Family Foundation. The gala includes a pre-concert dinner catered by Oliver’s, premium concert seating, and a post-concert dessert reception. Gala proceeds benefit the BPO’s educational programs.

Pops Opening brings Broadway and TV talent Matthew Morrison to the KMH Stage

The Pops series opens on Sept. 27 with the BPO debut of Broadway and television star Matthew Morrison. Morrison is best-known for playing the eternally optimistic teacher Will Schuester on “Glee,” but has also thrilled Broadway audiences in shows like “Hairspray” and “The Light in the Piazza.” On the heels of his successful June PBS special “Where It All Began,” he presents his own spin on Broadway favorites. Pianist and music director Brad Ellis, best-known for his role as the accompanist for the choir on “Glee,” will take the stage with Morrison. John Morris Russell, conductor of the Cincinatti Pops, will lead the program.

Dark Secrets revealed in Music and Glass to Open Know the Score Series

Bela Bartok’s psychological thriller opera “Bluebeard’s Castle” comes to life with a set designed by renowned glass artist Dale Chihuly. On Oct. 1, the BPO will become only the third orchestra in America to stage this version of “Bluebeard’s Castle.” Michelle DeYoung and Charles Robert Austin are specialists in their roles as the naïve Judith and the mysterious Duke Bluebeard. JoAnn Falletta leads the orchestra in this opening of the Know the Score series, which combines the music with the story behind it. After the concert, the audience is invited to continue the conversation and mingle with the musicians at a reception. General admission tickets are just $29; a $75 VIP package provides patrons with an intimate look at the set, premiere seating for the concert, a drink ticket for the post-concert reception, and a book on the works of Chihuly.  

Pre-concert guests are invited to see demonstrations presented by the Corning Museum of Glass, view works by Chihuly provided by the Albright-Knox Art Gallery and a display of works from Tonawanda Middle and High school students who have studied Chihuly’s style.


Dark Secrets: Bluebeard and Chihuly is made possible in part by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. WNED is the media sponsor for this event.   

Two-week Rachmaninoff Festival Opens M&T Classics

Sergey Rachmaninoff became one of the first international classical superstars to perform at Kleinhans when he gave a recital there one month after the hall opened. For two weeks in October, the BPO will celebrate his life and works. On Oct. 10 and 11, Fabio Bidini joins the BPO to perform his Piano Concerto No. 4. The program also includes Rachmaninoff’s Symphony No. 2 and “The Sea and the Seagull,” orchestrated by composer Ottorino Respighi. On Oct. 18 and 19, Gabriela Martinez performs Piano Concerto No. 1. The Buffalo Philharmonic Chorus and vocalists Rebecca Nash, Charles Reid and Darren Stokes join the orchestra for a haunting performance of Rachmaninoff’s Edgar Allen Poe-inspired choral symphony “The Bells.” The program that weekend also features “The Isle of the Dead,” a symphonic poem inspired by a painting by Arnold Bocklin.

The BPO joins forces with Irish Classical Theater Company and LehrerDance to present Moliere’s comedy “Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme.” Roughly translated to “The Would-Be Gentleman,” the play skewers both social climbers and the vain aristocracy. Although it premiered in 1670 before the court of Louis XIV, the play has proven to be timeless. Vincent O’Neill plays the title role, and the BPO will perform music written by Richard Strauss in 1912 to accompany to the German adaptation. Audiences will have three opportunities to see Moliere’s comedic masterpiece: at 10:30 a.m. Friday, Oct. 31; at 8 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 1; and at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 2.

Other highlights of the Classics season include: the return of former concertmaster Michael Ludwig December 6 and 7 performing the Sibelius Violin Concerto; the annual Mozart birthday celebration in January; a two-week Beethoven Festival that includes a performance of his Ninth Symphony on March 21, 22, 27 and 28; music by Polish composers featuring the BPO’s own principal horn and Polish native Jacek Muzyk on April 24 and 25; and Mahler’s Symphony No. 1 paired with Bernstein’s Serenade for Violin and Orchestra with violinist Tim Fain to close the season in May.

BPO Kids Presents Six Concerts for Kids of All Ages

BPO Kids returns for another season on Oct. 26 with Symphonic Spooktacular. Beginning at 1:30 p.m., young concertgoers can try out instruments at the Instrument Zoo, enjoy activities presented by B is for Books and Tutor Doctor, and meet costumed characters. The concert begins at 2:30 p.m. and features some of the spookiest music ever written. The orchestra and conductor will be in costume, and audience members are encouraged to dress up and participate in the costume parade across the Kleinhans stage. The series continues with Jingle Bell Jam on Dec. 14; A Very Beary Valentine on Feb. 15; The Magical Music of Disney March 15; Dr. Seuss Meets the BPO on April 19; and BlueCross BlueShield Day at the BPO with Carnival of the Animals on May 3. Tickets for the full season are just $58 for adults and $38 for kids.


More Pops Favorites Featured this Fall

The Hit Men are coming to town October 24 and 25 and bringing musical memories with them. This supergroup features former stars ofFrankie Valli and the Four Seasons, who went on to work with rock’s leading legends, including Tommy James and the Shondells, Carly Simon, Cat Stevens, and Elton John. Relive the glory days of rock and roll with these fabulous performers, featuring hits from “Sherry” to “You’re So Vain,” “Peace Train” and more.

Matt Catingub won the audience’s hearts and got them dancing in the aisles during his BPO debut in May. He returns to the podium on Nov. 8 in a program devoted to Glorious Gershwin. Catingub and pianist Kevin Cole reveal the genius of George Gershwin, often called “America’s Mozart.” On the piano or sax and singing with the exquisite Anita Hall and a jazz group from Fredonia State College, Catingub leads this lively program of arrangements of favorites like “I Got Rhythm” and “Summertime” as well as some rare gems from his GERSHWIN 100 recording. When Cole was growing up in Michigan, he visited the local library, checked out a biography of Gershwin, and struck up a correspondence with the author. Today, he is considered to be a leading Gershwin interpreter.

Jay White’s vocal and physical resemblance to Neil Diamond has had many audiences confusing him with the real thing. Diamond himself frequently jokes with White that he can do fewer gigs thanks to White’s strong work ethic, which has seen him perform more than 2000 casino shows in Las Vegas. White brings the feel-good sounds of Neil Diamond to the BPO on Saturday, Nov. 22, with Bradley Thachuk on the podium.

Other series highlights include Ben Vereen on Jan. 31; the BPO debut of Megan Hilty on Saturday, March 14; the return of the Glenn Miller Orchestra on April 17 and 18; and Ella, Louis and All That Jazz with Bryon Stripling and Marva Hicks on June 6.

Holidays at the BPO

The BPO presents the best and brightest holiday events in Western New York, starting with “The Nutcracker” at Shea’s featuring Neglia Ballet Artists on Nov. 29 and 30. Classical Christmas brings you Messiah and more under the baton of Erin Freeman. The Jingle Bell Jam is a family tradition that sparkles with Santa, pre-concert activities and a singalong on Dec. 14. Don’t miss this year’s BlueCross BlueShield Holiday Pops extravaganza as Sal Andolina’s Big Band joins the BPO center stage. Ron Spigelman will be on the podium, and the remarkable vocals of James Torme (son of jazz legend Mel Torme) will make your holiday merry and bright.


Subscription packages still available. Single tickets on Sale NOW!

Packages ranging from the full Pops and Classics series to smaller options like Classical five-packs and Flex Passes are always your best value. New subscribers save up to 50 percent off the single ticket price. Single tickets for all concerts are now on sale, with great seats still available. To subscribe or purchase single tickets, call (716) 885-5000; go to or visit the BPO Box Office at Kleinhans Music Hall, 3 Symphony Circle, Buffalo.



As Buffalo’s cultural ambassador, the Grammy Award-winning Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra under the leadership of music director JoAnn Falletta presents more than 100 concerts each year. Since 1940, the orchestra’s home has been Kleinhans Music Hall, a National Historic Landmark with a reputation as one of the finest concert halls in the United States. During the tenure of JoAnn Falletta, the BPO has rekindled its history of radio broadcasts and recordings, including the release of 30 new recordings on the Naxos and Beau Fleuve labels. For more information about the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, visit

Ukrainian Guitarist sweeps Falletta Competition

BUFFALO, N.Y. — Following tonight’s final round performance with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra,Marko Topchii of Ukraine swept the top prizes in the sixth biennial JoAnn Falletta International Guitar Concerto Competition.


Eight classical guitarists, representing seven nations, competed throughout the past week in the competition, presented produced by WNED ǀ WBFO Buffalo-Toronto and the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra.


Marko Topchii will receive a solo concert at the prestigious series Incontri Musicali, (Musical Encounter) in Milan, Italy in April 2015 along with a $10,000 cash prize, a Carnegie Hall appearance, national and international broadcast exposure, a guitar by Master Luthier J.D Glass, a recording contract with Fleur de Son, and a return engagement with the BPO. He also won the Audience Favorite Award, and the Musicians Award presented by BPO concertmaster Michael Ludwig.   


Topchii is 23 years old and has won more than 50 awards worldwide in professional international guitar competitions. His concerto this evening was Hector Villa-Lobos’ Concerto pour Guitare et Petit Orchestre. As Topchii received his award, the Buffalo Philharmonic brass section performed the national anthem of his embattled home country as the audience gave a standing ovation.  


Ekachai Jearakul of Thailand placed second, and received a $3,000 prize.Chad Ibison of the United States took third place and a $1,500 prize.


Buffalo-based Joanne Castellani and Michael Andriaccio, a well-known international chamber ensemble duo, are the Competition’s artistic directors. In addition to Castellani and Andriaccio, the live competitions were judged by Dale Kavanagh; Thomas Kirchhoff; Micaela Pittaluga; David Ostenberg; and Ana Vidovic.



Facebook: Marko Topchii of Ukraine wins all top prizes 2014 JoAnn Falletta International Guitar Concerto Competition #fallettacomp14


Twitter: .@Marko_Topchii of Ukraine sweeps 2014 @fallettacomp.#fallettacomp14



About the JoAnn Falletta International Guitar Concerto Competition


Founded in 2004 and organized by WNED ǀ WBFO and the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra (BPO), the competition is one of the foremost musical events in the world and the first concerto competition for classical guitarists. It is named in honor of the BPO’s music director, JoAnn Falletta. For more information about the competition, visit   


Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra Earns ASCAP Award For Adventurous Programming

BUFFALO, NY — For the second year in a row, the Buffalo Philharmonic has been recognized for adventurous programming.

The Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestrais one of 27 American orchestras to be honored with a 2013-2014 ASCAP Award for Adventurous Programming at the League of American Orchestras National Conference, taking place June 4-6 in Seattle, Washington. The BPOwas took second place among its group for its programming. The League and ASCAP present the awards each year to orchestras of all sizes for programs that challenge the audience, build the repertoire, and increase interest in music of our time. Approximately $750,000 has been bestowed on orchestras since the awards were established in 1947.

The BPO added to the repertoire for solo cello and orchestra this season with their commission and world premiere of Miguel del Aguila’s Concierto en Tango, performed by BPO Principal Cellist Roman Mekinulov. The BPO also presented the New York State premiere of Zhao Jiping’s Concerto for Pipa and Orchestra, and the American premiere of Russell Platt’s “Eurydice.” Works by Osvaldo Golijov, Astor Piazzolla, Alberto Ginastera, Daron Hagen, Jerome Moross and Jennifer Higdon also appeared on BPO programs during the past season.

“The story of classical music is still being written,” said BPO music director JoAnn Falletta. “So much exciting music has been composed in the 20th and 21st century. The musicians and I love to showcase this music, and the audience has loved making these musical discoveries with us. It’s gratifying to be recognized for our commitment to the music of our time, and to be in the company of so many other orchestras that share this commitment.”

“We are proud to partner with ASCAP in recognizing the ever-growing commitment of America’s orchestras to the music of our time,” said League President and CEO Jesse Rosen.



About the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra


As Buffalo’s cultural ambassador, the Grammy Award-winning Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra under the leadership of music director JoAnn Falletta presents more than 100 concerts each year. Since 1940, the orchestra’s home has been Kleinhans Music Hall, a National Historic Landmark with a reputation as one of the finest concert halls in the United States. During the tenure of JoAnn Falletta, the BPO has rekindled its history of radio broadcasts and recordings, including the release of 29 new recordings on the Naxos and Beau Fleuve labels. For more information about the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, visit




Established in 1914, ASCAP is the first and leading U.S. Performing Rights Organization (PRO) representing the world’s largest repertory totaling over 9 million copyrighted musical works of every style and genre from more than 500,000 songwriter, composer and music publisher members. ASCAP has representation arrangements with similar foreign organizations so that the ASCAP repertory is represented in nearly every country around the world where copyright law exists. ASCAP protects the rights of its members and foreign affiliates by licensing the public performances of their copyrighted works and distributing royalties based upon surveyed performances. ASCAP is the only American PRO owned and governed by its writer and publisher members.


About the League of American Orchestras

The League of American Orchestras leads, supports, and champions America’s orchestras and the vitality of the music they perform. Its diverse membership of approximately 800 orchestras across North America runs the gamut from world-renowned symphonies to community groups, from summer festivals to student and youth ensembles. The only national organization dedicated solely to the orchestral experience, the League is a nexus of knowledge and innovation, advocacy, and leadership advancement for managers, musicians, volunteers, and boards. Its conferences and events, award-winning Symphony magazine, website, and other publications inform music lovers around the world about orchestral activity and developments. Founded in 1942 and chartered by Congress in 1962, the League links a national network of thousands of instrumentalists, conductors, managers and administrators, board members, volunteers, and business partners. Visit to learn more.



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BPO announces summer season

BPO’s summer plans include Erie County Fair performance, three-concert series, benefit for new hospital 


Buffalo, NY – The BPO has planned a multifaceted summer that sees the orchestra performing at the Erie County Fair, Canalside and Old Fort Niagara; traveling to Princeton University; working with the Doctors of the World Orchestra to raise funds for the new John R. Oishei Children’s Hospital; and bringing rare instruments to Western New York.


Summer Nights @ The BPO


The BPO presents a three-concert series in its historic West Side neighborhood. Tickets for Summer Nights @ The BPO concerts start at just $19. Prior to each concert, guests are invited to sample the wares of Buffalo’s food trucks or pack a picnic to enjoy on the grounds of the hall.


JoAnn Falletta will lead violinists Augustin Hadelich and Mayuko Kamio at 7 p.m. Friday, July 18 in the “Rising Stars of the Stradivari Society” concert. The Stradivari Society of Chicago connects talented musicians with the owners of top-quality instruments.


Buffalo residents Clement and Karen Arrison are the owners of Hadelich’s violin, the 1723 “Ex-Kiesewetter” Stradivarius. The tones of the violin echoed through Kleinhans when Hadelich made his debut with the BPO in April 2013. Kamio plays the 1735 “Sennhauser” Guarneri del Gesu, on loan from an anonymous owner. The concert showcasing these extraordinary instruments will include music by Sarasate, Bach and Vaughan Williams.


Kleinhans will be lit green for the Garden Walk Celebration concert at 7 p.m. Saturday, July 26, but the concert will take place at a neighboring building. While the hall’s balcony is being recarpeted, the BPO performs at First Presbyterian Church, located at 1 Symphony Circle. At 4 p.m., Buffalo’s best folk acts will provide free entertainment on the grounds of Kleinhans. Patrons can get dinner at a food truck rodeo starting at 5 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church. Bradley Thachuk, conductor of Symphony Niagara, leads a concert of music inspired by nature in celebration of the 20th anniversary of the Buffalo Garden Walk.


Legendary saxophonist and Buffalo Music Hall of Fame member Bobby Militello joins the BPO at 7 p.m. Friday, Aug. 1 at First Presbyterian Church for a concert of jazz, featuring many favorites from Militello’s days as part of Dave Brubeck’s band. Stuart Chafetz, a fixture at the Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra who has led orchestras all over the nation, will conduct.


Individual tickets are $49 for gold-level seating, $29 for silver-level seating and $19 for bronze-level seating. The BPO is offering a three-concert gold-level package for $79 – a discount of more than 40 percent.


Welcoming Doctors of the World


A collaboration unlike any other will take place during the week of July 19, as 40 doctors from nine countries come to Western New York to perform a side-by-side concert with the BPO. The doctors are talented amateur musicians who enjoy putting their talents to use for a good cause. This will mark the first time that the Doctors of the World Orchestra will perform side-by-side with a professional orchestra. During the week, they will rehearse with the BPO and receive coaching from the orchestra’s section leaders and from JoAnn Falletta. At 8 p.m. on July 19, they will present a concert alongside BPO colleagues to benefit the brand-new John R. Oishei Women and Children’s Hospital, uniting two leading community assets. Falletta leads the orchestra in this program, which will include Holst’s “The Planets,” Bernstein’s Overture to “Candide,” and Respighi’s “Pines of Rome.” Tickets are $25. A VIP package is available for $150 and includes premium seating and a post-concert reception.  Food trucks will also be onsite at Kleinhans prior to this concert.


Traveling through Western New York


A free performance kicks off the summer season at 7 p.m. Tuesday, July 1 at Knox Farm State Park in East Aurora. Associate Conductor Matthew Kraemer will lead the orchestra in a concert featuring light classics by Leroy Anderson, Dvorak, and Strauss. Music by John Williams, Henry Mancini and tributes to Duke Ellington and Irving Berlin will round out the program. The concert also features Friends of the BPO scholarship winner and cellist Alexander Cousins. Cousins is a member of the Grand Island High School Class of 2014, and a student of BPO principal cellist Roman Mekinulov. Friends of the Knox Farm will host a garden party at Knox Farm’s Main House to benefit its continued restoration. Tickets are $100, and can be obtained by emailing


Two nights later, the BPO is downtown for the area’s number one Independence Eve celebration at Coca-Cola Field. After the Bisons game, the BPO performs a variety of popular music and patriotic favorites under the direction of Paul Ferington. A fireworks show lights up the night sky at the end of the evening.


On Saturday, July 5, the BPO returns to the Ellicottville Summer Music Festival with a program of Sousa marches, movie music by John Williams, Alan Mencken, and Danny Elfman, and patriotic favorites. Kraemer will lead this concert.


Tuesday, July 29 sees the return of the BPO to the M&T Plaza Lunch series. This series showcases the best music Western New York has to offer in free noontime concerts on Main Street. Ferington will lead the orchestra, and Teagan Faran, violinist and Friends of the BPO scholarship winner, will perform. Faran is a member of the Williamsville East High School Class of 2014.


Another BPO milestone takes place when they perform for the first time on Buffalo’s Thursday concert series. At 6 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 7, the BPO performs on the Thursdays @ Canalside series. Ontario-based Jeans n’ Classics collaborates with the BPO to present the music of Michael Jackson and Earth Wind and Fire. Kraemer leads the orchestra for the last time as Associate Conductor in this free, BPO Rocks -style concert.


Opening the Erie County Fair


For the first time since the 1950s, the BPO will perform a solo concert at the Erie County Fair. On Wednesday, August 6, JoAnn Falletta will lead the orchestra in a celebration of great American voices for the opening night concert of the 175th Erie County Fair. Music by Aaron Copland, George Gershwin, Duke Ellington, and John Phillip Sousa will set the tone for an extraordinary fair experience. The concert ends with a fireworks show.


Falletta to conduct at Old Fort Niagara


The summer season closes with an outdoor concert at Old Fort Niagara at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, August 9. Tickets are $25 for adults and $10 for children, and include admission to both the concert and the Fort. Family four-packs are available for $60. A fireworks show at the close of the concert will be the finale to the BPO’s summer season.


Performance at Princeton University


On Wednesday, July 23, the Buffalo Philharmonic will perform by special invitation at Princeton University’s Richardson Auditorium on the Seventh Annual Midsummer Celebration presented by William and Judith Scheide. The centerpiece of the concert is the world premiere of Mark Laycock’s “Flute Concerto for Jasmine Choi (Songbird’s Journey).” Choi has been hailed as “The Goddess of the Flute” by Korea Times, and was the first Korean woodwind player to be hired by a major symphony orchestra in the United States, and the first Korean featured as a cover story in Flute Talk magazine USA.


“Jasmine’s remarkable gifts could not help but inspire works to be written for her, and having known her for nearly fifteen years, the time seemed right to collaborate on a concerto that would reflect her personal and musical qualities.  The concerto is therefore beautiful and melodic while displaying her incredible virtuosic technical prowess within different musical fabrics that take the listener on what I hope is a very enjoyable journey with the soloist,” says Laycock.


Laycock’s friendship with JoAnn Falletta and his awareness of the BPO’s interest in new music led him to extend the invitation to the BPO to premiere his newest work in Princeton. Laycock himself will conduct the concert, which also includes Dvorak’s Carnival Overture and Brahms’ Symphony No. 2.  Tickets are $35, $45, and $55 and are available at Princeton University Ticketing by calling (609) 258-9220 or emailing


Full Summer Season


For information and tickets, call (716) 885-5000 or visit, unless noted otherwise.


Tuesday, July 1, 8 p.m. – Knox Farm State Park, East Aurora. Free performance.

Thursday, July 3, 10 p.m. – Independence Eve with the Bisons, Coca-Cola Field. Tickets available at

Saturday, July 5, 8 p.m. – Ellicottville Summer Music Festival. Tickets available at 

Friday, July 18, 7 p.m. – Rising Stars of the Stradivari Society, Kleinhans Music Hall.

Saturday, July 19, 8 p.m. – Doctors of the World Orchestra, Kleinhans Music Hall.

Wednesday, July 23, 8 p.m. — Seventh Annual Midsummer Celebration presented by William and Judith Scheide, Princeton University.   

Saturday, July 26, 7 p.m. – Garden Walk Celebration, First Presbyterian Church, 1 Symphony Circle.

Tuesday, July 29, 12 p.m. – M&T Plaza Lunch series. Free performance.

Saturday, Aug. 1, 7 p.m. – Bobby Militello, First Presbyterian Church, 1 Symphony Circle.

Wednesday, Aug. 6, 8 p.m. – American Voices, Erie County Fair. Free with fair admission.

Thursday, Aug. 7, 6 p.m. – The Music of Earth, Wind & Fire and Michael Jackson, Canalside Buffalo. Free performance.

Saturday, Aug. 9, 8 p.m. – Old Fort Niagara, Youngstown.






As Buffalo’s cultural ambassador, the Grammy Award-winning Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra under the leadership of music director JoAnn Falletta presents more than 100 concerts each year. Since 1940, the orchestra’s home has been Kleinhans Music Hall, a National Historic Landmark with a reputation as one of the finest concert halls in the United States. During the tenure of JoAnn Falletta, the BPO has rekindled its history of radio broadcasts and recordings, including the release of 27 new recordings on the Naxos and Beau Fleuve labels. For more information about the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, visit



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BPO names associate conductor


Buffalo, NY – Former BPO trombonist Stefan Sanders will move to the front of the orchestra in his new role as Associate Conductor.

Sanders was chosen after a six-month search that brought ten qualified candidates to Western New York. His new role will see him leading the Music for Youth concerts and the BPO Kids series. He will also be on the podium for some of the concerts in the Pops series, will serve as cover conductor for the Classics series concerts, and will lead one concert in the Know the Score series.

Sanders is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin and the Juilliard School. He began his career as a trombonist with the BPO in 1999 after winning the position while a student at Juilliard. He was a member of the BPO’s trombone section until 2006. He also served as a substitute with the New York Philharmonic, Seattle Symphony and Florida Orchestra, and was a guest trombonist in Seattle Opera’s performance of Wagner’s “Der Ring des Nibelungen.”

Sanders was a fellow at the American Academy of Conducting at Aspen under the tutelage of maestros Robert Spano, Larry Rachleff and Hugh Wolff. He did a one-year stint as apprentice conductor with the BPO, and went on to serve as Music Director for the University Orchestra at University of Texas at Austin and the Assistant Conductor of the Austin Symphony Orchestra. He continues in his role as Music Director of the Round Rock Symphony Orchestra in Round Rock, Texas. He has been a guest conductor for a number of orchestras, among them, the San Antonio Symphony and the Naples Philharmonic, and was recently seen on the BPO’s podium for the January 23 Know The Score concert, which was titled “Copland’s America” and featured a collaboration with LehrerDance.

“Sanders’ talent, enthusiasm, passion for music and experience in youth engagement will be tremendous assets to the orchestra,” said Music Director JoAnn Falletta. “He was an extraordinary member of the trombone section. The musicians and I are thrilled to work with him on a different level, and pleased that he will be part of the BPO’s ongoing story.”

“The BPO and the entire Buffalo community are so very special to me. I am deeply honored and incredibly excited to be returning during these vibrant times. It will be an absolute joy to work with this world-class orchestra and JoAnn Falletta once again,” said Sanders.



As Buffalo’s cultural ambassador, the Grammy Award-winning Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra under the leadership of music director JoAnn Falletta presents more than 100 concerts each year. Since 1940, the orchestra’s home has been Kleinhans Music Hall, a National Historic Landmark with a reputation as one of the finest concert halls in the United States. During the tenure of JoAnn Falletta, the BPO has rekindled its history of radio broadcasts and recordings, including the release of 28 new recordings on the Naxos and Beau Fleuve labels. For more information about the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, visit


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Celebration of Music Education honors leaders in the field


BUFFALO, NY —  Saturday, May 10, will mark the annual Celebration of Music Education at Kleinhans Music Hall, presented by the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra and sponsored by BOCES of Western New York. A reception and awards ceremony open to honorees, music educators, administrators and supporters of music education will be catered by Oliver’s and take place at 6:30 p.m.  At the beginning of the 8 p.m. concert, honorees will be recognized in front of the BPO audience.

The Niagara County Music Educators Association and the BPO will present the Award for Excellence in Music Education to Dean Vallas, director of choruses at North Tonawanda High School. Vallas, a native of Hamburg, conducts three choral ensembles at the school. The advanced women’s and mixed choirs placed first in their divisions at national competitions. He has served the NCMEA in leadership roles as the Vice President of Choruses (four years), Vice President (four years), and as President (five years). He is the current music coordinator for North Tonawanda City Schools, and producer of the school musical and a Cabaret Dessert Theater.

The Erie County Music Educators Association and the BPO will present Awards for Excellence in Music Education to Mark Flynn of the Akron Central School District; Wayne Moose and Maureen Reilly of the Williamsville Central School District; and will present a special award to Joe and Edie Clouse of J&E Instrument Service.

Flynn has taught at Akron Central Schools since 1983. He currently teaches middle school and high school concert bands, middle school jazz and high school marching band, and lessons for grades 6-12. He created a pep band program at Erie Community College and is credited with reviving the marching band for the Division I football program at the University at Buffalo. Known for inventive teaching methods, Flynn incorporates many creative tools to improve student learning and enhance performances. In 2005, he invented “Finger Fixers,” a device to help students develop good hand position. He is a recipient of Akron’s Outstanding Teacher Award.

Moose has taught in the Williamsville Central School District for 14 years. He currently conducts Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonic Orchestra, Jazz Orchestra, and Jazz Ensemble; teaches theory, composition, chamber ensembles, and jazz improvisation; and conducts the pit orchestra for the musicals at Williamsville East High School. Moose co-developed the Legends of Jazz Series at Williamsville East High School, bringing nationally-renowned artists to perform with the Jazz Orchestra. Moose is an active member of ECMEA, Buffalo Musicians’ Association, and NYSSMA.

Reilly has taught in the Williamsville Central School District for 23 years; the last 21 years at Williamsville East High School, where she has instructed four choirs and taught music theory. Her choirs have received gold medal ratings at the NYSSMA Major Choral Festival and top honors at several national music festivals. Reilly has hosted the Zone 1 NYSSMA Major Choral Festival since 1996. She has guest conducted and chaired several All-County festivals, and served on the Board of Directors of ECMEA from 1997-2001. She has directed the adult choir at St. Amelia R.C. Church in Tonawanda for the past 15 years.

Joe and Edie Clouse have operated the Amherst-based J&E Instrument Service since 1982. Joe Clouse was a former band director in the Williamsville Central School District, and a graduate of Ithaca College. He is active in the National Association of Professional Band Instrument Repair Technicians, serving as regional vice president and as president. J&E Instrument Service has served the music education community faithfully, selling and repairing instruments for students.

The Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra will recognize George and Bodil Gellman with the Leadership in Music Education Award. The Gellmans have supported music education programming at the BPO since the 1980s, and have been the principal sponsors of the current Symphony Scholars program since 2003. Through their dedicated sponsorship, hundreds of high school students from the Buffalo Public Schools and beyond have been able to attend BPO concerts and participate in activities with BPO musicians, conductors and guest artists. George Gellman is one of three founders of The Benchmark Group. He has extensive experience as an owner, investor, developer and operator of real estate projects throughout the United States. He and his wife Bodil also support health and wellness initiatives in Western New York.  

The Friends of the BPO will recognize their scholarship winners during this event. Duo Xu, a pianist from Williamsville East High School, won the $3000 scholarship. Teagan Faran, a violinist from Williamsville High School, won the $2000 scholarship. Alexander Cousins, a cellist from Grand Island High School, won the $1500 scholarship.

Xu began her piano studies at age 4. She is the accompanist for Williamsville East’s Chorale and a member of the school’s orchestra, with whom she will perform a concerto this year. Her resume includes wins in national and international piano competitions, including first prize in the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra’s Concerto Competition, Duquesne Young Artist National Piano Competition and Heddy Killian Piano Competition; second prize in Ithaca’s Piano Competition; and third prize in the Chopin International Thousand Islands Competition. She was featured in Buffalo’s Chinese New Year Performance and is the 2014 Amherst Symphony Orchestra Scholarship winner.

Faran was concertmaster of NYSSMA’s All-State Orchestra; co-concertmaster of ECMEA’s Area All-State Orchestra and National Association for Music Education All-National Orchestra; and concertmaster of the Greater Buffalo Youth Orchestra. She won the Vermont Concerto Competition and earned honorable mention in the Empire State Competition. Faran is the winner of both a Buffalo Chamber Music Society’s Silverman Scholarship and a $3000 ECMEA Student Scholarship.

Cousins has participated in the Greater Buffalo Youth Orchestra with whom he performed a concerto, played bass in NCMEA’s orchestra; and played cello in ECMEA’s orchestra, NYSSMA’s Area All-State String Orchestra and Symphony Orchestra, Cheektowaga Community Symphony Orchestra, and STAGE Summer Pit Orchestra. He is the winner of Buffalo Chamber Music Society’s Silverman Scholarship and a $3000 ECMEA Student Scholarship.



As Buffalo’s cultural ambassador, the Grammy Award-winning Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra under the leadership of music director JoAnn Falletta presents more than 100 concerts each year. Since 1940, the orchestra’s home has been Kleinhans Music Hall, a National Historic Landmark with a reputation as one of the finest concert halls in the United States. During the tenure of JoAnn Falletta, the BPO has rekindled its history of radio broadcasts and recordings, including the release of 27 new recordings on the Naxos and Beau Fleuve labels. For more information about the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, visit



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Live broadcast brings the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra to Western New York classrooms

Buffalo, NY — On March 12, students across Western New York will be able to experience a Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra Music For Youth concert from the comfort of their own classrooms.


An estimated 12,000 students in 34 school districts will watch “The Music Is In You” broadcast live from Kleinhans Music Hall at 10:15 a.m. Wednesday, March 12. Students at the Jewish Community Center’s pre-K program; at the Erie County Youth Detention Center; and at Aspire Learning Center will also watch this broadcast. Now in its fourth year, the live broadcast provides an enriching experience for students while helping schools to stretch their field trip dollars. The broadcast is sponsored by BOCES and Time Warner, and available to educational institutions at no cost.


The 2000-strong Kleinhans audience will consist of students from the Buffalo Public Schools who have been participating in the orchestra’s West Side Connection program, which combines curriculum provided by the BPO and guest artist visits. This is the fifth year of this highly successful program. West Side Connection is sponsored by Harter Secrest and Emery, the Better Buffalo Fund, and the Buffalo Public Schools. It is a part of the Music for Youth Series presented by First Niagara.


“The Music Is In You” will be conducted by BPO associate conductor Matthew Kraemer. Haitian-American composer Daniel Roumain, who draws his influences from Stravinsky and Jimi Hendrix alike, will come to the region to perform his “Woodbox Violin Concerto.” Also making the trip to Buffalo for this concert is 16-year-old cellist Lev Mamuya. Mamuya is the 2013 Sphinx Competition winner, a competition designed to encourage excellence among black and Latino string players. He resides in Roxbury, Massachusetts, and winning this prestigious competition has allowed him to perform with many of the top orchestras across the country. He will perform the third movement of Eduard Lalo’s Cello Concerto.


The program also includes Antonin Dvorak’s “Carnival Overture;” Charlie Chaplin’s “Smile” featuring the Buffalo Visual and Performing Arts Academy’s jazz choir; and Mason Bates’ “Mothership” for electronica and orchestra.


Participating school districts are: Albion; Alden; Brocton; Buffalo; Cassadaga Valley; Chautauqua Lake; Cheektowaga Central; Cheektowaga-Sloan; Clymer; Depew; Dunkirk; Eden; Friendship; Frontier; Grand Island; Hamburg; Hinsdale; Holland; Jamestown; Kenmore-Tonawanda; Lockport; Lyndonville; Maryvale; Newfane; Niagara Falls; Randolph; Randolph Academy; Sherman; Springville; Tonawanda City School District; West Seneca; Williamsville and Wilson.


“This broadcast is one of the highlights of our educational program,” said Robin Parkinson, BPO education director. “We always include the Sphinx Competition winner so that students have a chance to see one of their peers performing at a high level. We hope that this concert will spark a desire for students of all levels to engage in music, whether as a performer or as a devoted listener.”


“First Niagara is proud to present an exceptional musical experience for students attending schools in Buffalo’s West Side neighborhood,” said Elizabeth Gurney, Executive Director of the First Niagara Foundation. “This celebration of diversity through music resonates with children of all ages. However, we are especially proud to be here with so many young students from our west side neighborhood who might otherwise never have the chance to hear our world class orchestra in this magnificent facility, right here in the heart of their neighborhood.”


More than 180,000 people attend BPO concerts each year, including 40,000 youth attending in person and through this broadcast opportunity. Concerts and Common Core-aligned curriculum are available for pre-K-12 students. To learn more, visit


As Buffalo’s cultural ambassador, the Grammy Award-winning Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra under the leadership of music director JoAnn Falletta presents more than 100 concerts each year. Since 1940, the orchestra’s home has been Kleinhans Music Hall, a National Historic Landmark with a reputation as one of the finest concert halls in the United States. During the tenure of JoAnn Falletta, the BPO has rekindled its history of radio broadcasts and recordings, including the release of 27 new recordings on the Naxos and Beau Fleuve labels. For more information about the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, visit 

Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra shatters subscription sales record

Buffalo, NY – The Buffalo Philharmonic announced today that it has surpassed its subscription sales record, in both dollars and in the number of subscribers.

Subscription sales for the 2013-14 season currently stand at $1.85 million, up 4 percent from the previous season’s figure of $1.78 million. The number of individual subscribers now totals 6,700.

The new records represent a benchmark in a multi-year effort to expand the orchestra’s subscriber base, an effort that not only takes into account the strong and diverse musical programming the BPO offers, but also includes flexible subscription options, sales promotions, personalized service, and subscriber benefits ranging from a flexible ticket exchange program to the opportunity to attend open rehearsals and private post-concert parties. Each season ends with a free subscriber and donor-only concert in celebration of the orchestra’s dedicated patrons.

The subscription campaign was bolstered by several milestone events in the past year. The orchestra’s recent performances for Spring For Music at Carnegie Hall and on tour in Florida have generated a lot of national interest in the BPO. The orchestra released two recordings on the Naxos label in the past year, both of which received excellent reviews in the international media, strong sales from the classical music public, and radio play on classical stations throughout the country.

“The synergy that exists among the board, the musicians, the artistic leadership and the staff has allowed us to not only present great programs to our own community, but to step onto the national and international stages,” said BPO executive director Daniel Hart. “The orchestra is playing at a very high level. Music director JoAnn Falletta is an excellent ambassador to the community and continues to program outstanding seasons. It’s gratifying to see the public respond to our efforts.”

“We are very pleased that the number of subscribers and season ticket revenue continue to grow. We love our patrons and work to give them the best experience possible. With a triumphant return to Carnegie Hall and a very successful Florida tour last month, Western New Yorkers recognize what an asset our community has in the BPO and we are grateful for the support,” said sales director Michael Giambra.

The subscription sales campaign for the 2014-15 season is currently underway. Call (716) 885-5000 or visit to explore subscription options.


As Buffalo’s cultural ambassador, the Grammy Award-winning Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra under the leadership of music director JoAnn Falletta presents more than 100 concerts each year. Since 1940, the orchestra’s home has been Kleinhans Music Hall, a National Historic Landmark with a reputation as one of the finest concert halls in the United States. During the tenure of JoAnn Falletta, the BPO has rekindled its history of radio broadcasts and recordings, including the release of 27 new recordings on the Naxos and Beau Fleuve labels. For more information about the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, visit