Alan Gilbert leads the New York Philharmonic on its EUROPE / SPRING 2011 tour, May 12 - 24, 2011. This tour — the fourth with Gilbert as Music Director — will take the Philharmonic to the music capitals of Central Europe, with eleven concerts in nine cities: Basel, Switzerland; Baden-Baden and Munich, Germany; Vienna, Austria; Budapest, Hungary; Berlin, Dresden, and Leipzig, Germany; and Prague, Czech Republic. Although Gilbert has a long history of conducting concerts across Europe – his most recent performances there were with the Berlin Philharmonic in early April – and has taken the New York Philharmonic on two previous European tours, this excursion marks his first appearances in all nine cities as Music Director of the orchestra.
Continuing the New York Philharmonic’s multi-year focus on the rich legacy of former Music Director Gustav Mahler, Gilbert will conduct an all-Mahler program at Vienna’s Musikverein on May 15, three days before the 100th anniversary of the great composer-conductor’s death. (The 2010 – 2011 season also marks the 100th anniversary of Mahler’s final New York Philharmonic season and the 150th anniversary of his birth.) The program includes two pillars of the orchestral repertoire: Mahler’s Kindertotenlieder, featuring baritone Thomas Hampson — one of the great exponents of this work, and a decades-long champion of Mahler — and the Symphony No. 5, which will be performed five times throughout the tour. In addition to the May 15 performance in Vienna, Hampson will also appear in Basel, Baden-Baden, Berlin, Dresden, and Leipzig. Violinist Lisa Batiashvili will perform works by Bartók and Sibelius with the Philharmonic in Munich, Vienna, Budapest, Dresden, and Prague.