Move over, Spotify and Deezer: There’s a new digital portal for classical music - “Orchestra on Demand” - and it's all Philadelphian, all the time.
Launched Monday by the Philadelphia Orchestra, the website offers a sprinkling of concerts from current and past seasons, dating back to Yannick Nézet-Séguin’s inaugural 2012-13 season as music director. Additional content includes concerts by former music director Wolfgang Sawallisch. The recordings come mostly from the archives of WRTI, which carries weekly orchestra broadcasts, with additional educational recordings prepared by Philadelphia Orchestra Board of Directors member Michael Cone. While the launch is small, with just 15 show offerings, "more content will be added in the future," developers promised.
In years past, the Philadelphia Orchestra has experimented with closed-circuit video feeds of concerts; "Live Notes" - synchronized program notes playing to smart phones clutched by concert goers at the Kimmel Center - launched in the 2014-15 season.
“The Philadelphia Orchestra is proud to once again seize an opportunity offered by evolving technology,” said president and CEO Allison Vulgamore. “Most of us have probably attended a Philadelphia Orchestra performance and thought, ‘I’d love to hear that again.’ Technology provides the means, and we have worked with our musicians to develop a new way for those who love the Philadelphia Orchestra to enjoy these performances over and over again.”
Just a couple of the streamable-on-demand concerts – like “From Vienna to the New World” – are free for the tasting. Full access to posted audio and video concerts - including “Yannick Conducts Mahler 4” and “Bronfman Plays Beethoven” - is available as a perk to orchestra patrons who’ve donated or purchased tickets to the value of $50 or above on an annual ongoing basis. Or, you can make a donation directly on the site.
To access Orchestra on Demand content, click the “On Demand” tab on the orchestra’s homepage.