NY Philharmonic to Launch 'Philharmonic Free Fridays' with THUNDERSTUCK World Premiere, 10/10

NY Philharmonic to Launch 'Philharmonic Free Fridays' with THUNDERSTUCK World Premiere, 10/10

The New York Philharmonic will launch Philharmonic Free Fridays, offering 100 free tickets for young people ages 13-26 to each of the 18 Friday evening subscription concerts during the 2014-15 season. Philharmonic Free Fridays will launch October 10, 2014 - featuring Alan Gilbert conducting the World Premiere of The Marie-Josée Kravis Composer-in-Residence Christopher Rouse's Thunderstuck, commissioned by the Philharmonic; Haydn's Symphony No. 103, Drumroll; and Brahms's Violin Concerto, featuring The Mary and James G. Wallach Artist- in-Residence Lisa Batiashvili. Information on ticket distribution is available at nyphil.org/freefridays.

Philharmonic Free Fridays are part of Share the Music!, a new initiative to support expanded access to the New York Philharmonic. In addition to Philharmonic Free Fridays, Share the Music! will encompass activities that help make the New York Philharmonic more accessible to more people in New York and around the world, such as a new digital portal on nyphil.org that will be a hub for existing and new free digital content, including new online educational offerings, delivered in a mobile-friendly environment, and the Philharmonic's Concerts in the Parks, Presented by Didi and Oscar Schafer. Additional details about Share the Music! programs will be announced at a later date.

Share the Music! is made possible by an anonymous donor. The Philharmonic is fundraising for a matching campaign to support Share the Music!; if $2 million is raised by the end of 2014, the donor will contribute an additional $1 million. Contributions can be made by visiting nyphil.org/sharethemusic or calling (212) 875-5381.

"Growing up in New York, one of my earliest and fondest memories is attending the Philharmonic Concerts in the Parks," said Music Director Alan Gilbert. "Now, as Music Director, it is so gratifying to conduct the Philharmonic in these free concerts, especially because I know that it is often the first way in which many people experience this great Orchestra and the music we perform. I am proud that the Philharmonic is looking at more ways of expanding this kind of access, through Free Fridays and also by offering more content online. We are creating a multi-faceted approach to sustain and create opportunities for both music lovers and those who want to learn about it to reach the Philharmonic."

"The Philharmonic is always seeking new and vibrant ways to best serve our audiences and our community," President and Executive Director Matthew VanBesien said. "Share the Music! is a forum through which we hope to make the Orchestra even more accessible to more people: our young audiences, through Philharmonic Free Fridays; our fans, students, and teachers across the globe, through the new platform for digital content; and our neighbors and visitors, thanks to the beloved Concerts in the Parks. I thank our generous donor, and our supporters to come, for sharing our conviction that the Philharmonic is a vital resource to be shared as widely as possible."

Pictured: Music Director Alan Gilbert and the New York Philharmonic. Photo by Chris Lee.