Press Releases

The Orchestra Now Performs “Violinist as Composer” at Carnegie Hall on May 8, 2024

Featuring NYC Premiere of Eugène Ysaÿe’s Newly Discovered Violin Concerto in D Minor, and Joseph Joachim’s Variations for Violin and Orchestra, Last Performed in NYC in 1894

Guest Violinist Nikita Boriso-Glebsky Makes Carnegie Hall Debut

New York, NY, April 4, 2024 Music Director Leon Botstein leads The Orchestra Now in Violinist as Composer, the final performance in TŌN’s Carnegie Hall series this season, on Wednesday, May 8 at 7 PM. The concert spotlights four European virtuoso violinists who were also major composers in their respective countries but are not household names elsewhere today. Program highlights include the Carnegie Hall debut of award-winning Russian violinist Nikita Boriso-Glebsky, who joins the Orchestra in two works: the New York City premiere of Eugène Ysaÿe’s recently uncovered Violin Concerto in D minor, and Joseph Joachim’s virtuosic Variations for Violin and Orchestra.

Violinist as Composer
Wednesday, May 8, 2024, 7 pm
Carnegie Hall, Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage
The Orchestra Now
Leon Botstein, conductor
Nikita Boriso-Glebsky, violin (Carnegie Hall debut)
Grażyna Bacewicz: Partita for Orchestra
Joseph Joachim: Variations for Violin and Orchestra in E minor
Eugène Ysaÿe: Violin Concerto in D minor (NYC Premiere)
George Enescu: Symphony No. 2 in A Major, Op. 17
TŌN performs Polish composer Grażyna Bacewicz’s four-movement Partita for Orchestra, premiered by the National Philharmonic Orchestra in Warsaw in 1957. Bacewicz was an acclaimed concert violinist and short story writer with more than 200 works in her catalogue. Hungarian composer and violin prodigy Joseph Joachim’s stunning Variations for Violin and Orchestra has not been performed in New York City since 1894. The performance features internationally acclaimed Russian violinist Nikita Boriso-Glebsky, winner of both the Jean Sibelius and Fritz Kreisler Violin Competitions, in his Carnegie Hall debut. Joachim was a protégé of Felix Mendelssohn, who conducted the 12-year-old violinist’s London Philharmonic Symphony debut in a performance of Beethoven’s Violin Concerto. The concert also features the New York City premiere of the recently discovered Violin Concerto in D minor by famed Belgian violinist, conductor, and composer Eugène Ysaÿe. Hailed as “The King of the Violin,” he was regarded as the leading interpreter of the string works of French and Belgian composers of his day, and served as conductor of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra from 1918 to 1922. The evening closes with Romanian composer George Enescu’s three-movement Second Symphony, premiered in Bucharest at the Romanian Athenaeum in 1915. The work was not performed again until the conductor Iosif Conta revived it in 1961, six years after Enescu’s death. A composer, conductor, violinist, and professor, Enescu’s many honors include Officer and Chevalier of the French Legion of Honor, Correspondent Member of the Fine Arts Academy in Paris, and namesake of the George Enescu National Museum in Bucharest.

Tickets, priced at $25–$50, are available online at, by calling CarnegieCharge at 212.247.7800, or at the Carnegie Hall box office at 57th & Seventh Avenue.

TŌN’s next concert in Manhattan will be Debussy’s Afternoon of a Faun, led by French conductor Chloé Van Soeterstède in her New York debut on May 19 at Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Rose Theater.

The Orchestra Now
The Orchestra Now (TŌN) currently comprises 59 vibrant young musicians from 13 different countries across the globe: Austria, Brazil, China, Colombia, France, Hungary, Japan, Korea, Mongolia, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, and the United States. All share a mission to make orchestral music relevant to 21st-century audiences by sharing their unique personal insights in a welcoming environment. Hand-picked from the world’s leading conservatories—including the Yale School of Music, Shanghai Conservatory of Music, Royal Academy of Music, and the New England Conservatory of Music—the members of TŌN are enlightening curious minds by giving on-stage introductions and demonstrations, writing concert notes from the musicians’ perspective, and having one-on-one discussions with patrons during intermissions.

Conductor, educator, and music historian Leon Botstein, whom The New York Times said “draws rich, expressive playing from the orchestra,” founded TŌN in 2015 as a graduate program at Bard College, where he is also president. TŌN offers both a three-year master’s degree in Curatorial, Critical, and Performance Studies and a two-year advanced certificate in Orchestra Studies. The Orchestra’s home base is the Frank Gehry-designed Fisher Center at Bard, where it performs multiple concerts each season and takes part in the annual Bard Music Festival. It also performs regularly at the finest venues in New York, including Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and others across NYC and beyond. HuffPost, who has called TŌN’s performances “dramatic and intense,” praises these concerts as “an opportunity to see talented musicians early in their careers.”

The Orchestra has performed with many distinguished guest conductors and soloists, including Leonard Slatkin, Neeme Järvi, Gil Shaham, Fabio Luisi, Vadim Repin, Hans Graf, Peter Serkin, Gerard Schwarz, Tan Dun, and JoAnn Falletta. Recordings featuring The Orchestra Now include two albums of piano concertos with Piers Lane on Hyperion Records, and a Sorel Classics concert recording of pianist Anna Shelest performing works by Anton Rubinstein with TŌN and conductor Neeme Järvi. Buried Alive with baritone Michael Nagy, released on Bridge Records in August 2020, includes the first recording in almost 60 years—and only the second recording ever—of Othmar Schoeck’s song-cycle Lebendig begraben. Recent releases include Classics of American Romanticism—featuring the first-ever complete recording of Bristow’s Arcadian Symphony—and an album of piano concertos with Orion Weiss, both on Bridge Records, and the soundtrack to the motion picture Forte. Recordings of TŌN’s live concerts from the Fisher Center can be heard on Classical WMHT-FM and WWFM The Classical Network, and are featured regularly on Performance Today, broadcast nationwide.

For upcoming activities and more detailed information about the musicians, visit

Leon Botstein
Leon Botstein is founder and music director of The Orchestra Now (TŌN), music director and principal conductor of the American Symphony Orchestra (ASO), artistic codirector of Bard SummerScape and the Bard Music Festival, and conductor laureate and principal guest conductor of the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra (JSO), where he served as music director from 2003 to 2011. He has been guest conductor with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Aspen Music Festival, Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, Mariinsky Theatre, Russian National Orchestra in Moscow, Hessisches Staatstheater Wiesbaden, Taipei Symphony, Simón Bolivar Symphony Orchestra, and Sinfónica Juvenil de Caracas in Venezuela, among others. In 2018, he assumed artistic directorship of Campus Grafenegg and Grafenegg Academy in Austria.

Recordings include acclaimed recordings of Othmar Schoeck’s Lebendig begraben with TŌN, Hindemith’s The Long Christmas Dinner with the ASO, a Grammy-nominated recording of Popov’s First Symphony with the London Symphony Orchestra, and other various recordings with TŌN, ASO, the London Philharmonic, NDR Orchestra Hamburg, and JSO, among others. He is editor of The Musical Quarterly and author of numerous articles and books, including The Compleat Brahms (Norton), Jefferson’s Children (Doubleday), Judentum und Modernität (Bölau), and Von Beethoven zu Berg (Zsolnay). Honors include Harvard University’s prestigious Centennial Award; the American Academy of Arts and Letters award; and Cross of Honor, First Class, from the government of Austria, for his contributions to music. Other distinctions include the Bruckner Society’s Julio Kilenyi Medal of Honor for his interpretations of that composer’s music, the Leonard Bernstein Award for the Elevation of Music in Society, and Carnegie Foundation’s Academic Leadership Award. In 2011, he was inducted into the American Philosophical Society. More info online at

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Mark Primoff
Associate Vice President of Communications
Bard College
Phone: 845.758.7412
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