"There’s always been much to admire in the BPYO’s playing over the years: the name belies the fact that, as an ensemble, they operate at a professional level...Don’t let their name – or Zander’s familiarity as a local fixture – fool you. This is special. Take note, give thanks, and appreciate it for the gift that it is." -Jonathan Blumhofer, The Arts Fuse: Classical CD and Livestream Reviews: Mahler 2, Two Ways

 

"Zander has accomplished the once seemingly miraculous feat of elevating the eleven-year-old BPYO’s performances to such consistent heights, that we expect miracles of engagement and execution every time they play. Like a master potter, Zander has raised the elemental clay of his young charges into a vessel that overflows with their intentions to show the best of what enlightened Americans have to offer. This cornucopia of joy, hope, and excellence spills out immeasurable gifts season after season." -Lee Eisman, The Boston Musical Intelligencer: Molding Mahler’s Elemental Clay

 

"No amount of stellar reviews can really prepare you for witnessing this youth orchestra live; it is a breathtaking experience...You could have closed your eyes and imagined this was, in no way, a youth orchestra, These players gave it their all, and their all was extremely impressive. They played with sophistication and confidence, and their ensemble work was consistently first-rate." -Susan Miron, Boston Classical Review:Boston Philharmonic Youth deliver a stunningly poised Mahler Two

 

"Lordy what a triumph. This might have been the single most successful movement I ever heard from this orchestra…or any orchestra." -Lee Eiseman, The Boston Musical Intelligencer review: A Night To Remember: Titanics Complete Voyages

 

"Without question, this BPYO rendition of Shostakovich Ten was one of the most urgent and necessary of any symphonic score I’ve heard all year." – The Arts Fuse Concert Review: Boston Philharmonic Youth Orchestra at Symphony Hall

 

"The BPYO is way more than just a youth orchestra: it’s a world-class ensemble that happens to be made up (mostly) of teenagers. They return to action for the new season the Sunday after Thanksgiving with Anna Federova playing Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto no. 2 and music director Zander conducting further works by Carl Maria von Weber and Dmitri Shostakovich."  - The Arts Fuse Fall Arts Preview -Music Commentary: 2018-19 Boston Classical Music Fall Season Preview (Orchestras, Opera, and New Music, mainly)

 


"Forget the fact that this is an orchestra made up of kids aged 12 to 20; they’re one of the finest ensembles in the country, period". - The Arts Fuse: Concert Review: Boston Philharmonic Youth Orchestra at Symphony Hall

 

"To be sure, the BPYO has been one of the most consistently impressive and musically satisfying groups in town this past decade. This season was no exception. Though comprised mainly of teenagers, it’s an orchestra whose collective professionalism belies its membership’s juvenescence. What’s more, the players typically bring a sense of excitement, discovery, and intentionality to their performances that, in turn, enlivens even the most familiar repertoire." -Boston Classical Review: Blazing night of Russian music benefits Ukraine war relief with Boston Phil Youth Orchestra

 

"Rising from the insuppressible enthusiasm of maestro Benjamin Zander—who founded the (senior) Boston Philharmonic Orchestra 40 years ago—this ensemble of fantastically talented 12- to 21-year-olds delivers exactly what you want from a night at the orchestra: to be blown away. Whether playing the notoriously difficult Mahler (one of the maestro’s specialties) or another canonical composer, they deliver youthful energy and just a touch of wonder." -Boston Magazine, Boston Magazine: Best of Boston 2019


"One could not hope for brighter, more attractive and hope-inspiring emissaries from the America we hold dear. They can serve with certainty to summon our better angels." -Lee Eisman, Boston Musical Intelligencer: BPYO Rewards Grateful Community

 

"Hearing this contingent for the first time, and, believe or not, Zander for the first time, I can attest as a satisfied listener and critic that much of the execution reached completely professional levels" -Boston Musical Intelligencer: Jackiw and BPYO Cure Warhorseitis

 

"there was no want of love in the orchestra’s playing, or in the interpretations of BPYO founder and conductor Benjamin Zander." -Jeffrey Gantz, Boston Musical Intelligencer: Zander & BPYO Ask What Love Tells U

 

"In the right hands even a group of talented kids can give us the best Mahler of the year." -Lloyd Schwartz, WBUR: The Year In Boston's Classical Music Scene

 

"Under the brilliant direction and tutelage of its founder Benjamin Zander, the Boston Philharmonic Youth Orchestra may well be considered competitive with world class ensembles." – Wunderhorn

 

"There was an elegiac quality to the BPYO’s spring season finale: the program was both a commemoration of the end of World War 1 and a farewell to the ensemble’s graduating members. And its inclusion of Ives’ visionary The Unanswered Question served as a memorial for guest conductor John Heiss’s son, Frank, who had died unexpectedly a few weeks earlier. The latter, given the full spatial treatment – string aureoles emanating from the lobby in Sanders Theater framing a solo trumpet up in the balcony and a quartet of flutes onstage – was this packed year’s unforgettable moment. Full review here." -The Arts Fuse: Best Performances of 2018: BPYO plays Ives May 7

 

“...deeply committed, musically accomplished performance of Mahler’s First Symphony... The third movement of the Mahler, with its haunting minor-key treatment of a children’s melody, landed to chilling effect, and the symphony’s vast finale built inexorably to the full exaltation of its final pages, with horns unseated and woodwinds raised toward the Mahlerian heavens. Once again Zander had drawn out the very best from these young players, and a delighted crowd in Symphony Hall made its gratitude seen and heard.”  -Jeremy Eichler, The Boston Gobe: Stefan Jackiw and Benjamin Zander return to the Mendelssohn Concerto, 20 years later

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