JoAnn Falletta’s 20th Anniversary
Celebrate Maestro JoAnn Falletta’s remarkable 20-year tenure as music director of the BPO. It is through her vision that the orchestra has reached new levels of national and international prominence, and continues to present best-in-class live symphonic music for all of the Western New York region and beyond.
To purchase tickets for JoAnn Falletta’s 20th anniversary black-tie affair, October 18 at Hotel Henry on the Richardson Olmsted Campus, please click here.
JOIN THE 20TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION!
October 18, 2019
Schedule of events and partner offerings subject to change. Please check back for the latest updates.
History of JoAnn Falletta and the BPO
Growing up in the borough of Queens in New York City, JoAnn first fell in love with music when she was just 7 years old and began studying classical guitar. She went on to study music at the Mannes College of Music and The Juilliard School, where she studied conducting under the great Leonard Bernstein.
In 1999, following a lengthy international search, JoAnn Falletta was awarded the role of music director of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, the first female conductor to lead a major American ensemble. “When I got here, there was graffiti all over [the exterior], and the glass was broken,” she recounted of Kleinhans Music Hall in an article with the New York Times. It was a precarious time for the City of Buffalo. Decades of industrial decline had left the city, and the Buffalo Philharmonic, on shaky ground.
Since that time, note by note, measure by measure, JoAnn has given hope to the thousands of BPO patrons that have entered through Kleinhans’ doors over the past 20 years. She has built a remarkable following and brought the BPO to new levels of acclaim. She has been dubbed a “Maestro for the people,” noting the camaraderie she shares with the world-class musicians of the orchestra, its dedicated staff, and its incredible patrons and supporters.
JoAnn is appointed as Music Director of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, becoming the first female conductor to lead a major American ensemble.
JoAnn helps to establish the BPO’s own recording label, Beau Fleuve.
JoAnn is instrumental in hiring Daniel Hart as Executive Director of the BPO. The Orchestra’s budget has since grown by 25 percent, and subscriptions have reached record levels.
Under the direction of Maestro Falletta, the BPO releases its first recording with NAXOS.
JoAnn is the recipient of the Seaver/National Endowment for the Arts Conductors Award for exceptionally gifted American conductors.
JoAnn leads the BPO’s first tour to Carnegie Hall.
JoAnn and the BPO found the JoAnn Falletta International Guitar Concerto Competition in partnership with WBFO/WNED.
JoAnn is inducted into the Western New York Women’s Hall of Fame.
JoAnn receives the Foundation for Jewish Philanthropies Award for outstanding leadership in the Marcel Tyberg Musical Legacy project.
JoAnn and the BPO win two GRAMMY Awards for John Corigliano’s “Mr. Tambourine Man: Seven Poems of Bob Dylan.”
JoAnn leads national and international broadcasts of BPO concerts on NPR’s Performance Today and From the Top, SymphonyCast, and the European Broadcasting Union.
JoAnn is inducted into the Buffalo Music Hall of Fame.
JoAnn and the BPO receive their first ASCAP Award for Adventurous Programming.
JoAnn receives the Chancellor Charles P. Norton Medal, the University at Buffalo’s highest award.
JoAnn is named Buffalo’s Most Influential Civic Leader.
JoAnn and the BPO receive their second ASCAP Award for Adventurous Programming.
JoAnn leads the BPO’s second tour to Carnegie Hall.
JoAnn and the BPO receive their third ASCAP Award for Adventurous Programming.
JoAnn is named World’s Favourite Conductor in an online poll for Bachtrack.
JoAnn is elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, joining an esteemed roster that dates to the Academy’s founding in 1780, including America’s founding fathers and more than 250 Nobel and Pulitzer Prize winners.
Under JoAnn’s leadership, the BPO’s education programs surpass reaching 50,000 Western New York students for the first time.
JoAnn is voted #4 on the YourClassical list of the top 20 conductors of all time.
The BPO makes its first international tour in three decades, performing at Warsaw’s prestigious Beethoven Easter Festival, where JoAnn made history as the first female American conductor to lead an orchestra at the Festival.
Under JoAnn’s leadership, the BPO achieved the goal of its Crescendo Campaign, bringing the endowment past the $50 million mark and ensuring the longevity of the orchestra for generations to come.
JoAnn is featured in Macy’s Remarkable Women ad campaign, which showcased six women from different professional backgrounds, bound together by their talent, leadership and achievements.
As of the fall of 2019, the BPO has released 24 recordings with NAXOS.
JoAnn receives her third GRAMMY Award for a collaboration with composer Kenneth Fuchs and the London Symphony.
JoAnn celebrates the remarkable milestone of 20 years as Music Director for the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra.