New Music Director Andris Nelsons Announces BSO’s 2014-2015 Season

For Nelsons's first season, he just wants to "enjoy driving the Ferrari."

andris nelson bso

Andris Nelsons, BSO Music Director Designate, leads the BSO in a rehearsal of Brahms’s Symphony No. 3. / Photo by Marco Borggreve via BSO

After conducting a performance of Richard Strauss’s Salome today at Symphony Hall, Andris Nelsons announced the BSO’s 2014-2015 season at a press conference this afternoon.

For his first year as music director, Nelsons explained:

The first season is, for me, about introducing myself to the orchestra, to get to know the orchestra better, to enjoy the world-class quality the orchestra has… Just to enjoy driving the Ferrari. And you know, I don’t drive, so I hope you made the right decision.

Friendship and family are key words for the next season because also what is very important is my calibration with the orchestra, bringing the family together.

“Family” and “friends” are indeed key words, as Nelsons revealed the soloists for his first concert—one of them is soprano Kristine Opolais, his wife.

In addition, many of the programs planned for 2014-2015 harken to his Latvian background, with blocks of performances focusing on Slavic and Scandinavian pieces (Bartok, Tchaikovsky, Rachmaninoff’s The Bells) and Germanic compositions (Beethoven, Mozart, Bruckner, Mahler).

Nelsons pointed out that playing Mahler’s Symphony No. 6 is special to his relationship with the orchestra since playing Mahler’s Ninth was “how we got to know each other the first time” (in reference to one of his first performances with the BSO).

Also on deck for his first season are three performances at Carnegie Hall in New York, and fantastic (super-secret) plans for Tanglewood in summer 2015. Our favorite event to look forward to? An open house at Symphony Hall on April 12, where classical music newbies can visit the historic concert hall for free and sample the immense talent of the BSO under its new music director.

Andris Nelsons is the BSO’s 15th music director since the organization’s founding in 1881. He succeeds James Levine, who was music director from 2004 to 2011.

The only stumbling block to life in Boston for Nelsons so far? Finding a decent three-bedroom apartment.


For more details on the 2014-2015 season, visit or call 617-266-1492. The open house takes place April 12 at Symphony Hall, 301 Massachusetts Ave., Boston.