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June 25, 2012

A Great Success

We’re thrilled to report that this weekend’s Stokowski Celebration Concerts were a big hit! Thanks to all who attended for making these performances so enjoyable, and especially to those who let us know how much fun they had. Here are a few comments posted on our Facebook page in reaction to the weekend performances:

 

“I am still flying with joy from the concert.”

“The lighting for the Stokowski shows has been beautiful. Congratulations to the Maestro, his players, the experts behind the scenes, and the enitre business organization for a successful run.”

June 15, 2012

Another Sneak Peek

Given that Wagner’s “The Ride of The Valkyries” was a top selection during our Audience Choice vote we felt it would only be appropriate to share a couple of stunning images that James Alexander and his team have created especially for this work, which the Orchestra performs next Saturday evening.

Brünnhilde materializes out of the vapors and appears inside the Academy of Music.

June 08, 2012

Some Digital Renderings

We met today with James Alexander and Clark Productions, the stage director and team that are creating the incredible visual experience around our June Stokowski Celebration Concerts in the Academy. James and his team showed us some digital renderings projected onto a detailed scale model of the Academy of Music’s interior—take a look:

 

June 07, 2012

In the Hall, on the Radio

Stokowski wanted to control and perfect every aspect of how his orchestra sounded, live and over the airwaves. Stokowski had an experimental device created that allowed him to both conduct the orchestra and control the volume levels of the broadcast at the same time. This cartoon, which ran in the Philadelphia Public Ledger on December 28, 1930, depicts Stokowski’s multi-tasking talents as conductor and engineer.

June 06, 2012

A Stokowski Sighting in China

A Stokowski sighting in China during the Orchestra's 2012 Residency and Tour! This photo is part of a special exhibit at the new Guangzhou Opera House featuring some of the most famous classical music talents of all time.

June 05, 2012

Broadcasting With Color

A sketch of Leopold Stokowski from the early 1930s.

On January 27, 1933, Leopold Stokowski and The Philadelphia Orchestra teamed up with Bell Telephone Labs in New Jersey to experiment with new technology that allowed for a broadcast of a concert from Philadelphia to Washington, D.C. The Orchestra performed live in the Academy of Music while an audience in Constitution Hall in Washington, D.C., listened to the Orchestra remotely, the audio-only broadcast accompanied by a colored light show. But where was Stokowski?

June 01, 2012

What is it?

Among the materials found at Penn was this curious object labeled as a “variable pitch box.” You’ll see the buttons are clearly labeled. But there was no documentation on what this piece of equipment did.

May 23, 2012

The Votes Are In!

You have spoken! The final votes are in on the Audience Choice concert and you all put together a fantastic program for Saturday evening, June 23, at the Academy of Music. It was fascinating to watch the close race among the top choices. There were a few lead changes and some surprising results. In the end, here's what came out on top, and how Yannick has organized them into a compelling concert:Bach/orch. Stokowski Toccata and Fugue in D minor

May 21, 2012

One Month Away

The June Stokowski Celebration concerts are just one month away, and we hope you’re as excited as we are to see Yannick lead the Orchestra in its former historic home, the Academy of Music. Now is probably as good a time as ever to encourage you to revisit some of the other posts on this blog to continue familiarizing yourself with Leopold Stokowski, and also to get a better sense of just how spectacular these June concerts will be by watching James Alexander’s behind-the-scenes videos.

May 08, 2012

Bach - Toccata and Fugue

In this latest blog post James Alexander, the stage director responsible for the physical presentation of the four Stokowski Celebration concerts in June, shares what he saw in his mind’s eye when he listened to Stokowski’s landmark orchestral arrangement of Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in D minor, the composer’s most famous work in the organ repertoire. 

James then goes on to enlighten us as to what happens to his “napkin sketches” once he shares them with his creative special effects team at Symphony V.0. 

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