June 15, 2004


For the 47th consecutive year, orchestras demonstrating exceptional commitment to contemporary composers were honored at the American Symphony Orchestra League's National Conference, which was held last week in Pittsburgh. The annual ASCAP (American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers) Adventurous Programming Awards recognize American orchestras whose concert programs prominently feature music composed within the last twenty- five years.

The Awards were presented at the David L. Lawrence Center at the annual conference of the American Symphony Orchestra League. Introducing the Awards presentation, Frances Richard, ASCAP's Vice President of Concert Music, said, "These awards recognize the most vital advocates of the music of our time. Just as we rebuild our concert halls and replenish the ranks of our orchestras, ASCAP congratulates those orchestras and their music directors who enrich the repertory and keep our great concert music tradition vibrant and alive."

Richard introduced ASOL Board member Michael Morgan, an exciting, young American conductor and strong advocate of the composers and music of our time, who presented the 2004 ASCAP Awards. Morgan is currently the Music Director of the Oakland East Bay Symphony, the Sacramento Philharmonic, the Oakland Youth Orchestra, and Artistic Director of the Festival Opera of Walnut Creek (CA).

In her remarks, Richard announced that 2004 marked the 90th Anniversary of the founding of ASCAP. The Society was established in 1914 by founders including Irving Berlin, John Philip Sousa and Victor Herbert, who was at that time was the Music Director of the Pittsburgh Symphony. Today, ASCAP is the world's largest performing right organization with over 180,000 composer, lyricist and music publisher members. ASCAP is committed to protecting the rights of its members by licensing and collecting fees for the public performance of their copyrighted works and distributing royalties to the Society's members. ASCAP's repertory includes the entire spectrum of music - from pop to symphonic, rock to gospel, Latin to country, to jazz, rhythm and blues, and music for theater, film and television. ASCAP's Board of Directors is comprised solely of writers and publishers, elected by the membership.

The complete list of award winners are:

John S. Edwards Award for Strongest Commitment to New American Music
American Composers Orchestra, Steven Sloane, Music Director and Conductor, Robert Beaser, Artistic Director

Morton Gould Award for Innovative Programming
Los Angeles Philharmonic, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Music Director

Leonard Bernstein Award for Educational Programming
San Francisco Symphony, Michael Tilson Thomas, Music Director

Awards for Programming of Contemporary Music:

Orchestras with Annual Operating Expenses more than $13.6 Million
First Place - Seattle Symphony, Gerard Schwarz, Music Director
Second Place - The Cleveland Orchestra, Franz Welser-M–st, Music Director
Third Place - Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Daniel Barenboim, Music Director

Orchestras with Annual Operating Expenses $5.2 - $13.6 Million
First Place - Colorado Symphony Orchestra, Marin Alsop, Music Director Laureate
Second Place - The Buffalo Philharmonic, JoAnn Falletta, Music Director
Third Place - The Nashville Symphony Orchestra, Kenneth Schermerhorn, Music Director and Conductor

Orchestras with Annual Operating Expenses $1.625 - $5.2 Million
First Place - Brooklyn Philharmonic, Robert Spano, Music Director
Second Place - Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra, Neal Gittleman, Music Director and Conductor
Third Place - Tucson Symphony Orchestra, George Hanson, Music Director and Conductor

Orchestras with Annual Operating Expenses $420,000 - $1.625 Million
First Place - Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Gil Rose, Artistic Director
Second Place - Berkeley Symphony Orchestra, Kent Nagano, Music Director and Conductor
Third Place - Albany Symphony Orchestra, David Alan Miller, Music Director and Conductor

Orchestras with Annual Operating Expenses $420,000 or less
First Place - Camellia Symphony Orchestra, Eugene F. Castillo, Music Director and Conductor
Second Place - Meridian Symphony Orchestra, Claire Fox Hillard, Music Director and Conductor
Third Place - Northwest Symphony Orchestra, Anthony Spain, Music Director

Collegiate Orchestras
First Place - University of Michigan Symphony Orchestra, Kenneth Kiesler, Music Director
Second Place - Brown University Orchestra, Paul Schuyler Phillips, Music Director and Conductor
Third Place - Lamont Symphony Orchestra, Lawrence Golan, Music Director and Conductor

Youth Orchestras
First Place - Orange County High School of the Arts Chamber Orchestra, Christopher Russell, Music Director
Second Place - Etowah Youth Orchestras, Michael R. Gagliardo, Music Director and Conductor
Third Place - New Jersey Youth Symphony, Barbara H. Barstow, Artistic Director

Festival Orchestras
First Place - Cabrillo Music Festival, Marin Alsop, Music Director and Principal Conductor

Award for American Programming on Foreign Tours
First Place - Minnesota Symphony Orchestra, Osmo Vänsk”, Music Director