BLO Brings Free Orchestral Music To Hatch Shell

Boston Landmarks Orchestra, under the direction of Music Director Christopher Wilkins, brings its annual summer series of free, live orchestral concerts to the iconic DCR Hatch Memorial Shell on the Esplanade, with a special focus on concerts in East Boston, Chelsea, Roxbury, and Mattapan. Rooted in the mission “we build community through great music,” Landmarks Orchestra is thrilled to present a concert series of free events which showcase a diversity of music and cultures.

Programming this summer celebrates a dazzling array of composers and music. Highlights include the world premiere of “Many Mansions,” a new orchestral and choral work by Diane White-Clayton based on Roland Carter’s arrangement of “In Bright Mansions Above”; the Boston premiere of William Dawson’s “Negro Folk Symphony”; Beethoven’s 9th Symphony with the One City Choir, Coro Allegro, and vocal soloists; a new partnership with the Four Strings Academy; and the announcement of cuatrista Fabiola Méndez as Composer-In-Residence for 2022-23 to work with Boston students on composition and performance workshops.

Music Director Christopher Wilkins says “The 2022 season is filled with music the whole family will enjoy—works by Gershwin and Bernstein, the William Tell Overture, a performance of Pines of Rome in the series finale, and much more. There are great monuments of the orchestral literature, including the Beethoven ‘Ninth’ and Berlioz’s Symphonie fantastique. And as always, performances fulfilling Landmarks Orchestra’s unique cultural mission, addressing Boston history, cultural diversity, and conflict and reconciliation. We are also thrilled to begin an exciting long-term collaboration with Puerto Rican cuatro virtuoso, Fabiola Méndez.

Following a strategic planning process led by Chair of the Board of Advisors, Jean Scarrow and Landmarks Orchestra Board Chair Emmett G. Price III, the organization is embarking on a 10-year strategic plan. Primary goals stemming from the plan are to increase the diversity of audiences, ensembles, and staff to be more representative of the residents of the City of Boston; bring more community-based programming into Boston neighborhoods; and develop deep and authentic partnerships with partner communities within the next decade.

New Partnerships and Community Outreach

At the heart of each Landmarks Orchestra season is the spirit of community and collaboration.

This year’s partnerships and collaborations include:

• A new relationship with Four Strings Academy, a music training institution founded by Mariana Hill. Students from the Academy will join Landmarks principal string players for a Prelude Performance on July 20.

• Partnering with the Hyde Square Task Force and Ágora, founded by Elsa Mosquera Sterenberg, led to a grant from the Yawkey Foundation to fund our first Composer in Residence—cuatrista Fabiola Méndez. She will spend a year in residence, working with students to create a new work that will premiere on the Landmark’s 2023 summer season. A preview concert of the work will happen in January 2023 (details TBA).

• A grant from The Cummings Foundation which will support Landmarks Orchestra’s Music & Memory program with performances in assisted living centers which specialize in care for patients with memory loss and dementia.

• In partnership with Carnegie Hall, Link Up introduces students grades 3-5 to an orchestra by helping them become part of it. Students are given the opportunity to join Boston Landmarks Orchestra in a highly participatory program in which they learn to sing or play an instrument in the classroom, with a culminating performance. Landmarks Orchestra is the only orchestra in the state to work with Link Up.

• Landmarks has partnered with longtime Performing Arts ASL Interpreter with the Orchestra, Christopher Robinson, who will lead a group of advisors to develop strategies which will make Landmarks events more accessible. This summer’s performances will include ASL interpreters at many performances, and SUBPAC’s will be available at select performances. SUBPAC is a patented tactile audio system that provides a high-resolution immersive experience by quietly and accurately transferring deep bass frequencies to create an immersive, physical, full-body experience.

2022 Summer Concerts and Events

An ASL interpreter will be present at many performances; see the website for current details.

Telling Tales

Wednesday, July 20, 2022, 7pm ET | Hatch Shell

Boston Landmarks Orchestra, Christopher Wilkins, conductor

Prelude Concert: Four Strings Academy with Landmarks Orchestra Principal Strings

Bedřich Smetana, “The Moldau” from Ma Vlast (My Fatherland)

Ethyl Smyth, The Wreckers Overture   

Paul Dukas, The Sorcerer’s Apprentice

Hector Berlioz, Symphonie fantastique

Sweet Sorrow

Wednesday, July 27, 2022, 7pm ET | Hatch Shell

Boston Landmarks Orchestra, Christopher Wilkins, conductor

Giuseppe Verdi, Nabucco Overture

Florence Price, Ethiopia’s Shadow in America

Boris Lyatoshinsky, Symphony No. 3 in B minor, Peace Shall Defeat War

 Andante maestoso—Allegro impetuoso (1st movement)

Jan Sibelius, Finlandia

David Amram, Symphony: Songs of the Soul (Shiray Neshama)

Freilekh (Dance of Joy) (3rd movement)

Piotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, Romeo and Juliet Overture-Fantasy      

Beethoven’s 9th Symphony

Saturday, August 6, 2022, 7pm ET | Hatch Shell

Boston Landmarks Orchestra, Christopher Wilkins, conductor

Sirgourney Cook, soprano

Tichina Vaughn, mezzo-soprano

Ethan Bremner, tenor

Phillip Bullock, baritone

David W. Hodgkins, chorus master

One City Choir

Coro Allegro  

Gioachino Rossini, William Tell Overture

Johann Strauss, Jr,. To America: Fair Columbia Waltzes                          Diane White-Clayton, Many Mansions (world premiere performance)

Ludwig van Beethoven, Symphony No. 9 in D minor, op. 125                                  

Wednesday, August 17, 2022, 7pm ET | Hatch Shell

Boston Landmarks Orchestra, Christopher Wilkins, conductor

Fabiola Méndez, cuatro

George Gershwin, Cuban Overture       

Georges Bizet, L’Arlésienne (excerpts from original version)

Carlos Chávez, Sinfonia india

Florence Price, Folksongs in Counterpoint (selections)

Fabiola Méndez, Bomba pa’ la diaspora and other selections

Felix Mendelssohn, Symphony No. 4 in A major, “Italian”

The Virtuoso Orchestra

Wednesday, August 24, 2022, 7pm ET | Hatch Shell

Boston Landmarks Orchestra, Christopher Wilkins, conductor

Leonard Bernstein, Candide Overture

William Dawson, Negro Folk Symphony (Boston premiere)         Georges Enesco, Romanian Rhapsody in A major, op. 11, No. 1         

Ottorino Respighi, The Pines of Rome

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