Beethoven’s 9th and Ives with the BSO



Tanglewood (297 West St., Lenox, MA 01240, Lenox MA)

Michael Tilson Thomas will lead a concert of Ives and Beethoven with vocal soloists tenor Ben Bliss and bass-baritone Dashon Burton and the Tanglewood Festival Chorus with conductor James Burton.

Thomas leads the BSO in Tanglewood’s traditional season-ending performance of Ludwig van Beethoven’s intensely expressive, innovative, but ultimately uplifting Symphony No. 9. Following three questing instrumental movements, the finale is a setting for soloists and chorus of the German playwright and poet Friedrich Schiller’s “Ode to Joy.” The symphony—Beethoven’s last, composed in 1825—was an immense success at its premiere and has since become a symbol of hope for the universal togetherness of humankind.

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Internationally acclaimed and Grammy awardwinning Bass-baritone Dashon Burton, a core member of the Grammy awardwinning ensemble Roomful of Teeth, joins the Tanglewood Learning Institute (TLI) in an informal conversation to share elements of his work and his life.

Dashon Burton is a native of the Bronx, N.Y. Praised for his “nobility and rich tone,” (New York Times) and hailed as “excellent,” (Akron Beacon Journal) and “robust,” (Cleveland Plain Dealer) he is active in a wide range of repertoire and feels privileged to have worked with artists and ensembles all across the U.S. as well as in Cameroon, Canada, Italy and Germany. Recent collaborations include Pierre Boulez, Masaaki Suzuki and Steven Smith. He began his professional studies at Case Western Reserve University and graduated from the Oberlin College Conservatory of Music.

Michael Tilson Thomas is Co-Founder and Artistic Director of the New World Symphony, Music Director Laureate of the San Francisco Symphony and Conductor Laureate of the London Symphony Orchestra. Born in Los Angeles, he is the third generation of his family to pursue an artistic career.

His grandparents, Boris and Bessie Thomashefsky, were founding members of the Yiddish Theater in America; his father, Ted Thomas, was a producer at the Mercury Theater Company in New York before moving to Los Angeles where he worked in film and television; and his mother, Roberta Thomas, was the head of research for Columbia Pictures.