“Even after decades of leading the Oklahoma City Philharmonic, Maestro Joel Levine finds developing the program of concerts for each season the hardest part of his job,” writes Brandy McDonnell in Sunday’s (8/27) Daily Oklahoman (Oklahoma City, OK). “The OKC Philharmonic’s eight-concert 2017-18 Classics season will include three concerts with Levine at the podium, three with his successor, Alexander Mickelthwate, wielding the baton, and two with guest conductors [Matthew Troy and Michelle Merrill] leading the orchestra…. The OKC Philharmonic’s founding music director and conductor, Levine also sought to bring significant symmetry to his final concert before he retires in May after 29 seasons. Mickelthwate will be the orchestra’s music director designate until June, when he will take on the mantle of music director…. Levine will open the Classics season Sept. 16 with a program” of Carl Maria von Weber, Brahms, and Mozart. May’s program will include Copland’s Lincoln Portrait, which he says “has a purpose that I’m going to keep secret for now.” Said OKC Philharmonic Executive Director Eddie Walker, “We will experience the full emotions of saying farewell to our founder, Maestro Levine, while anticipating the first concerts of his successor.”

Posted August 29, 2017