First Episode of Gerard Schwarz's ALL-STAR ORCHESTRA Wins Two Emmy Awards

First Episode of Gerard Schwarz's ALL-STAR ORCHESTRA Wins Two Emmy Awards

All-Star Orchestra took home two Emmy Awards yesterday at the 57th Annual New York Emmy Awards, which took place at the Marriott Marquis' Broadway Ballroom in New York City.

"Music for the Theatre," the first program in the eight-episode classical music concert series, won in both categories for which it was nominated. The series features top musicians from across the country performing major symphonic masterpieces and works from leading contemporary American composers and premiered nationwide on public television and in the New York metro area on THIRTEEN in September 2013.

Music Director Gerard Schwarz said, "I have such a strong belief in the power and importance of great music, and I care so deeply about making it available to as many people as possible. Our goal is to bring musical masterpieces to life through innovatively filmed performances by outstanding musicians from America's top orchestras. For all of us at the All-Star Orchestra receiving these honors is the confirmation of the importance of all of the incredibly hard work, and the affirmation of its impact and reach. We are so grateful to WNET and all of the remarkable public stations in our vast country for believing in classical music, and it makes us very optimistic as we work toward a second season."

"Music for the Theatre" features Stravinsky's Suite from the Firebird, Ravel's Daphnis and Chloe Suite No. 2, and Bright Sheng's Black Swan. The episode won in two categories: Special Event Coverage (Other than News and Sports) with John Forsen as Producer, Gerard Schwarz as Music Director, Habib Azar as Director, and Dmitriy Lipay as Audio Engineer; and Audio: Post Production honoring Mr. Lipay.

Maestro Schwarz's All-Star Orchestra is comprised of top players from some of the country's greatest orchestra's including Boston, Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Dallas, Detroit, Florida, Houston, Minnesota, Nashville, New Jersey, New York (the New York Philharmonic and the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra), Oregon, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, San Francisco, Seattle, Utah, Washington D.C., and more. Together these musicians perform on one stage under the leadership of Maestro Schwarz, who led the Seattle Symphony for 26 years and now serves as its Conductor Laureate.

The episodes feature classical masterpieces as well as new works from leading contemporary American composers. Pairing works like Beethoven's Fifth Symphony with Philip Glass' Harmonium Mountain, the series aims to expose classical music to an even broader audience while keeping the listening experience informative and accessible. In addition to performances of classical and contemporary works, the programs also feature musical excerpts, images, interviews and educational commentary by Maestro Schwarz, the All-Star Orchestra musicians, and special guests. Each episode also features a brief historical look at the life of the composer at the time he was composing that particular work.

Each of the All-Star Orchestra's eight one-hour programs, recorded over four days, was taped at New York's historic Grand Ballroom at the Manhattan Center where conductors including Leonard Bernstein, Pierre Boulez, Zubin Mehta, and Arturo Toscanini made their classical music recordings. Nineteen high-definition cameras were allowed to roam freely during the All-Star Orchestra's recordings creating an unprecedented "up close and personal" experience. Programs from the first season have been released on DVD by Naxos of America and are available from Amazon and other retailers. All episodes are available to stream at and via the free THIRTEEN Explore iPad App.

All-Star Orchestra is a co-production of the All-Star Orchestra (John Forsen, executive producer; Paul Schwendener, executive director) and WNET (Stephen Segaller, executive-in-charge; Julie Anderson, executive producer). American Public Television (APT) distributes All-Star Orchestra to public television stations nationwide.

All-Star Orchestra is made possible by Charles and Lisa Simonyi Fund for Arts and Sciences, The Gladys Rubinstein Trust, The Garrigan Lyman Group, Van Ness Feldman LLP, David Gannett, Bruce and Jeanne McNae, and others.