Michael Tilson Thomas begins final season as Music Director of San Francisco Symphony

Michael Tilson Thomas began his 25th and final season as Music Director of the San Francisco Symphony with sensational style last week. Beginning with an opening gala concert at Davies Hall last Thursday, the orchestra paid tribute to their esteemed colleague of so many years and also to MTT’s long term partner Joshua Robison with a programme featuring joyous works ranging from Beethoven to Britten to Copland.

Joshua Kosman of the San Francisco Chronicle wrote of the enthusiasm that permeated the entire evening:

“That air of celebration, of discovery, of sheer jubilant buoyancy filled the hall on Wednesday, Sept. 4, as Thomas began his final season as the orchestra’s music director during the annual gala performance to kick off the San Francisco Symphony’s season. It was the kind of fizzy exaltation you always hope for from a season opener, and it was there in full force.”

Joshua Kosman, San Francisco Chronicle, 6 September 2019

Watch the video below for a recap of this incredible night.

Continuing the celebrations, the following night MTT and the orchestra were joined by rock band Metalica for the opening performance of the brand new Chase Center in San Francisco, performing to over 18,000 people. Kory Grow of Rolling Stone praised the performance and Michael’s ability to charm the audience:

“…for Michael Tilson Thomas, Music Director of the San Francisco Symphony, winning over the crowd Friday night was easy […] the Symphony showed they could entrance a legion of metalheads even without Metallica ”

Kory Grow, Rolling Stone, 7 September 2019


© Brett Murray
© Brett Murray










Performing an eclectic blend of classical and rock favourites, this will not be an evening quickly forgotten.

Michael continues his work with the orchestra this weekend with three performances of Mahler Symphony No. 6 in A minor. Check here for more details.

Watch the video below for a sneak preview of the many exciting performances still ahead this season for Michael and the San Francisco Symphony .


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