Radio Orchestras

German radio orchestras are conquering America. The Bavarian Radio Orchestra is traveling to the United States early in November, and the Hamburg Radio Orchestra is currently touring America. Under the guidance of its Music Director Christoph Eschenbach, the orchestra performs in Washington, D.C., New York, and California. The orchetsra already filled Carnegie Hall to capacity, and this is particularly impressive because the famous concert hall was hosting no less than four orchestras within seven days. The other three orchestras represented a variety of styles. Most similar to the NDR Orchestra was the renowned Philadelphia Orchestra, led by its German Music Director Wolfgang Sawallisch. The American Composers Orchestra specializes in contemporary music, and the New York Pops Orchestra performs lighter works, ranging from Broadway tunes to jazz arrangements. One kind of orchestra, however, has become extinct in America. Radio symphony orchestras, which played a major role in American music life during the 1940's and 1950's, are no longer in existence. Hence, the musicians from Hamburg filled a gap. Georg Hirsch found out why their American counterparts have become dinosaurs.

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