San Francisco Symphony Announces New Recordings on SFS Media This Season

Spring 2011 Releases to feature music of Beethoven, Ives and Copland

The San Francisco Symphony and Music Director Michael Tilson Thomas today announced their recording plans for the 2010-11 season on the Orchestra’s own SFS Media™ label. Following the recent completion of its Grammy® award-winning Mahler recording project, the Orchestra will record and release works from both the core classical repertoire as well as works new to or rarely heard by most audiences. The new recordings will reflect the broad range of programming that has been a hallmark of the MTT/SFS partnership. SFS Media releases will be available on both hybrid SACD and digital download and will be recorded live in concert in Davies Symphony Hall.

"The musicians of this Orchestra are playing at the highest level,” said SF Symphony Music Director Michael Tilson Thomas. “I continue to be impressed by the power, richness and sophistication of their sound whether performing repertoire by Beethoven or by American Mavericks such as Ives, Copland or John Adams. I am very happy that, on the eve of our Centennial Season, the next chapter in this Orchestra's recording history will focus on sharing our special brand of music making with audiences everywhere."

On February 8, 2011 the Orchestra will release two new discs. Charles Ives’ Concord Symphony arranged by Henry Brant captured in concerts during February 2010 will be paired with Copland’s Organ Symphony featuring Paul Jacobs to be recorded during concerts taking place this week on September 22, 23 and 25. These two modernist, early 20th century works by American composers are rarely recorded or available in surround sound. Also on February 8, 2011 SFS Media will release an All-Beethoven disc featuring the composer’s Symphony No. 5 and Piano Concerto No. 4 with Emanuel Ax, both recorded in December 2009.

In addition to the Copland Organ Symphony recorded this week, MTT and the SFS will record performances of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7 to be held October 7- 9 and John Adams’ Harmonielehre performed during the composer’s Project San Francisco residency in December 2010. The recordings will be released at a future date to be announced. The SFS commissioned John Adams’ Harmonielehre and first performed it in 1985 under the baton of Edo de Waart, a recording of which was released on Nonesuch Records. It is still currently available on CD and digital download.

The San Francisco Symphony’s recording history dates back to 1925, releasing its first album with its second Music Director, Alfred Hertz. In 1926 the San Francisco Symphony was heard as part of the Standard Symphony Radio Hour broadcasts, the first series of symphonic concert broadcasts in the United States. The broadcast of the SFS’s 1973 Paris concert from the Théâtre des Champs Elysées was the first stereo satellite broadcast of symphonic music in the world. The San Francisco Symphony’s recordings have won some of the world’s most prestigious recording awards, including fourteen Grammy Awards, Japan ’s Record Academy Award, France ’s Grand Prix du Disque, and Britain ’s Gramophone Award. In 2001 SFS Media was launched as the San Francisco Symphony’s own record label on which it released of all nine of Mahler’s symphonies and the Adagio from the unfinished Tenth Symphony as well as his songs for voice and orchestra. Unique to all American Orchestras, SFS Media also produces MTT and the SFS’s national public television series and multimedia project Keeping Score designed to make classical music more accessible to people of all ages and musical backgrounds. The project is anchored by a national PBS television series that debuted in 2006, and includes an innovative website,, to explore and learn about music; a national radio series; documentary and live performance DVDs; live performance audio CDs and an education program for K-12 schools to further teaching through the arts by integrating classical music into core subjects. Season Three of the Keeping Score television series, centered on the music of Gustav Mahler, is scheduled to air in spring 2011.

All SFS Media recordings are available from the Symphony Store in Davies Symphony Hall and online at as well as other major retailers. The recordings can also be purchased as MP3s from iTunes, Emusic, Rhapsody, and other digital outlets and high definition downloads are available through HD Tracks, and the in the UK . SFS Media recordings are distributed by Harmonia Mundi in the U.S. , SRI in Canada , through IODA digitally and Avie internationally.


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