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History

"A symbiosis of players and audience" -- The New York Times

Founded in New York City in 1976 by six musicians, the New Amsterdam Symphony Orchestra ("NASO") has grown to include over 75 players who are a combination of professional, semi-professional and accomplished avocational players. NASO's membership has been consistently diverse and includes men women of all ages as well as ethnic, racial and professional backgrounds. Since its inception, NASO has been committed to supporting performance opportunities for women and minorities.

The primary goal of NASO is to seek out and showcase outstanding musical talent and provide them with the much-coveted opportunity to perform with a symphony orchestra in New York City. NASO has presented over 180 concerts in a range of venues including Alice Tully Hall, Fordham at Lincoln Center, Symphony Space, Riverside Church and The Cathedral of St. John the Divine.

Since 1976, NASO concerts have featured emerging conductors and soloists and world premieres of works by young American composers. NASO has also paid tribute to seasoned artists and provided them with the opportunity to do innovative or special programs in exciting New York City venues.

Over the past 39 years, NASO has provided conducting opportunities for many young conductors. Many have gone on to prominent positions in the music world. Conductors who have led the New Amsterdam Symphony in the early years of their careers include:

  • George Manahan, Music Director, New York City Opera
  • Eckart Preu, Music Director, Stamford Symphony, Spokane Symphony
  • Glen Cortese, Music Director, New York Chamber Sinfonia
  • Victoria Bond, former Music Director, Roanoke Symphony Orchestra
  • Kimbo Ishii-Eto, Music Director, Cayuga Chamber Symphony
  • Miriam Burns, Music Director, Kenosha Symphony Orchestra

NASO has also presented many outstanding soloists in the beginning stages of their careers. Soloists who have performed with the New Amsterdam Symphony Orchestra include:

  • Avery Fisher Prize winner, pianist Ursula Oppens
  • Tchaikovsky Competition winners, cellist Nathaniel Rosen and violinist Stephanie Chase
  • Young Concert Artists cellist Colin Carr, guitarist Elliot Fisk, violinist Sung Ju Lee and clarinetist Todd Palmer
  • Kennedy Center finalist, pianist Aleck Karis
  • Leeds Competition winner, pianist David Buechner
  • Tertis Competition winner, violist Hsin-Yuang

Ensembles that have performed with or evolved from NASO include:

  • The Amadeus Trio
  • The Quintet of the Americas � members of NASO
  • The Sylvan Winds � members of NASO

NASO has premiered numerous compositions by contemporary American composers, many of them award winners, including Roger Zahab, Allan Segall, Glen Cortese, Anthony Korf, David Amram, Luis Ballard, Joyce Barthelson, Gamal Abdel Rehim, Julia Smith, Netty Simons and Ray Luke.

 


New Amsterdam Symphony Orchestra
Founders

Elizabeth Felton
John Howell
Michele Korf-Epstein
Rosalind Levinson
Eilene Schiller
Patricia Vardin



Board of Directors


Ann Amarga
Sandra Elm
Eileen Fitzgerald
Scott Gerhardt
Rosalind Levinson
Nick Lewandowski
Joe Peters
Ruth Singleton


Administrators


General Manager Sandra Elm
Finance Director Joe Peters
Web Maintenance Joe Peters
Personnel Managers Rosalind Levinson (Violins)
Catherine Irwin (Cellos)
Sandra Elm (Violas/ Basses/Percussion)
Scott Gerhardt (Winds/Brass)

 






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