An Associated Press report published in Friday’s (9/23) Washington Post and other publications states, “Nearly four decades after becoming the first American symphony to tour Communist China, the Philadelphia Orchestra announced it will embark on a cultural exchange to find and nurture young Chinese musicians and composers and bring orchestral music to audiences beyond the biggest cities. A delegation representing Beijing’s National Centre for the Performing Arts and Philadelphia orchestra officials signed an official agreement Thursday in Washington to kick off the program starting next May. It will be launched as a one-year pilot but is expected to continue beyond that, orchestra officials said. … ‘This is a unique pilot for a long-term relationship with China, with whom we have had a historic connection for 40 years,’ orchestra president and chief executive officer Allison Vulgamore said, ‘and it is a clear signal that our cultural ambassador role in the future is not only intact from our point of view but from the point of view of our partners in China.’ The fine details are still being worked out but the partnership aims to find and nurture young Chinese musicians as orchestral players and identify a Chinese composer to create a new work that the Philadelphia Orchestra will perform at the end of the program’s first year.”

Posted September 23, 2011