Monday 25 January 2021

Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla extends tenure at CBSO until 2022, then becomes Principal Guest Conductor

Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla and City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra (Photo Andrew Fox)
Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla and City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra (Photo Andrew Fox)

It has been announced that Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla has extended her tenure at the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra until Summer 2022, when she will take up the role of Principal Guest Conductor. 

Rather than happening because Gražinytė-Tyla is fed up of Birmingham, she comments, "This is a deeply personal decision, reflecting my desire to step away from the organisational and administrative responsibilities of being a Music Director at this particular moment in my life and focusing more on my purely musical activities. I have such admiration and great fondness for the musicians of the CBSO and I am absolutely delighted that we shall continue to make music together in the coming years." Let us hope that she means it, though I fear that in the present climate there will be further orchestral re-shuffles (following on, of course from Sir Simon Rattle's announcement that he was leaving the London Symphony Orchestr).

We managed to catch Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla and the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra at the 2019 Dresden Music Festival in Ligeti, Schumann and Brahms [see my review], one of the nine international tours that she has undertaken with the orchestra with other venues including the Vienna Musikverein and Lucerne Festival. 

Other highlights include an ambitious Debussy Festival, winner of a South Bank Sky Arts Award,  championing the music of Mieczysław Weinberg (1919-96) with a Deutsche Grammophon recording of Weinberg’s Symphony No.21 (she has also recorded Weinberg's Chamber Symphony No. 4 with Gidon Kremer and Kremerata Baltica, see my review), two sold-out performances of Mahler’s Symphony of a Thousand to start the CBSO’s Centenary year. With the CBSO she has performed 13 premieres and 17 works by living composers, and she also conducted Ivor Cutler's Elsewhereness with the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire Symphony Orchestra at the opening of the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire (also recorded see my review).

Full details from the CBSO website.

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