“Nicholas McGegan, the buoyant, sure-footed conductor who has led the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra since 1985, will step down as music director at the end of the 2019-20 season,” writes Joshua Kosman in Tuesday’s (10/2) San Francisco Chronicle. “He will take the title of Music Director Laureate and continue to make periodic appearances with the orchestra…. For all but the first five years of its existence, the ensemble, which performs music of the 18th and 19th centuries on period instruments, has been practically synonymous with McGegan’s leadership. It was under his guidance that the orchestra developed into perhaps the nation’s leading early-music orchestra, a status cemented by a noteworthy discography of 40 entries and … international touring…. During McGegan’s tenure, the orchestra has performed the work of 135 composers, forged productive partnerships … and given such modern-day premieres as … Rameau’s ‘The Temple of Glory.’ … Expanding the repertoire has also meant resurrecting scores that have long lain unperformed in libraries and archives.” Says McGegan, “These projects where you just have to do everything yourself are a little like Alice Waters growing her own food—you could just go to the store and buy tomatoes, but no. It’s a very Berkeley thing.”

Posted October 3, 2018

Nicholas McGegan photo by Randi Beach