Monday, Jun 25, 2018
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UM musical society hires artistic director

VanBesien will take reign of the prestigious arts organization in July

  • 2-16-Matthew-Van-Besien-2017-hi-res-jpg

    Matthew Van Besien will take over as artistic director of the University Musical Society in Ann Arbor in July.

  • 2-16-PhilDGreg2-1-jpg

    Jazz Pianist Phil DeGreg will perform at 7 p.m. Monday at the University of Toledo.

The University Musical Society in Ann Arbor has appointed Matthew VanBesien as its new artistic director.

Formerly the president of the New York Philharmonic, VanBesien will take the reign of the prestigious UM arts organization in July, replacing retiring President Kenneth C. Fischer after 30 years of service.

VanBesien said the opportunity to organize a wide breadth of talent within the performing arts ultimately played a major factor in his decision to move to the UMS. 

“I am thrilled to have the opportunity to come and help lead the UMS,” he said. “I’ve had the opportunity to get to know the people with the UMS through the New York Philharmonic over the last several years. It is a historic institution, and I really like the spirit of adventure and experimentation that exists with the UMS.”

VanBesien has served as the president of the New York Philharmonic since 2012 and will become the seventh president in the 138-year history of the UMS. A former French horn player for the Louisiana Philharmonic, he joined the League of American Orchestra’s management fellowship program and then worked with several other symphonies worldwide before landing as head in New York.

■ The Toledo Symphony Welltower Mozart & More series continues with “An Evening of Haydn:” Symphony No. 82 in C Major and Symphony No. 83 in G Minor. Associate principal violin Tea Prokes will be featured in Vaughn Williams’ The Lark Ascending at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at the Franciscan Center, Lourdes University, 6832 Convent Blvd., Sylvania. Tickets and more information are available at 419-246-8000 or

■ The Toledo Symphony Youth Orchestras will present a free concert at 4 p.m. Sunday in the Peristyle, Toledo Museum of Art, 2445 Monroe St. A preconcert recital by concerto contest winners will begin at 3:15 p.m.

■ Great Performances in the Great Gallery presents a free Black History Month Celebration organized by Toledo-based soprano and educator Margaret Barron at 3 p.m. Sunday at the Toledo Museum of Art, 2445 Monroe St.

■ The Owens Community College Band presents a free pops concert with music by Cole Porter, George Gershwin, and Leroy Anderson at 2:30 p.m. Sunday at the Owens Community College Center for Fine & Performing Arts, 30335 Oregon Rd., Perrysburg. More information is available at 567-661-7081.

■ International jazz pianist Phil DeGreg is the guest artist for the 2017 Art Tatum Memorial Jazz Scholarship Concert at the University of Toledo. The 7 p.m. Monday concert will be at the UT Center for Performing Arts Recital Hall, West Towerview Boulevard and West Rocket Drive. Parking is available in Lot 12. Tickets are $10 to $15 and available at 419-530-2787 or

■ The BGSU Wind Symphony performs at 8 p.m. Friday; the University and Concert Bands perform at 8 p.m. Saturday. Both will be in Kobacker Hall, Moore Musical Arts Center. Tickets are $10 at 419-372- 8171 or​the-arts.html.

■ Music at the Manor House features the BGSU Brass Ensembles in a free concert 7:30 p.m. at Tuesday in the Manor House, Wildwood Metropark, 5100 W. Central Ave.

■ The Toledo School for the Arts Wilde Dance presents A Wilde Transition. Ballet and modern dance fuse in an exploration of transitions that happen in life at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Valentine Theatre, 410 Adams St. Tickets are $10 to $22 and available at 419-246-8732, extension 226, or

■ The University of Toledo School of Visual and Performing arts presents the 2017 SVPA Arts Symposium: The Role of Arts in Today’s America. Will Lucas will be the keynote speaker. 

The free event is from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday at the UT Student Union; free parking is available in Areas 10, 5, 1S, and the East Parking Garage. Attendees are asked to RSVP at 419-530-7356. More information is available at​al/​svpa/​symposium.

■ The Toledo Swiss Singers will present their third dinner theater mystery event, Cruisin’ for Murder. The musical review is set on the final night of a cruise vacation aboard the Mystery of the Seas. The evening includes a Bon Voyage cruise dinner. Two performances are scheduled — 6:30 p.m. Saturday and 3:30 p.m. Sunday — at the Chalet at Oak Shade Grove, 3624 Seaman Rd., Oregon.

Tickets are $15 for children and $25 for adults and are available at 419-206-0975. Reservations required.

■ Interested singers are invited to join the annual Palm Sunday Chorus for a performance of music by Elgar, Parry, and Vaughn Williams on Apr. 9. The concert is accompanied by an orchestra. Rehearsals are at 10 a.m. Saturdays at Monroe Street United Methodist Church, 3616 Monroe St. There is no cost to participate except for purchasing music. More information is available at 419-473-1167, extension 230.

■ Sounds & Sights on Thursday Nights, the summer concert series of Chelsea, Mich., is accepting applications for performers in its summer lineup. Auditions are open to musicians, singer-​songwriters, and other street performers and will be from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. March 27 at 128 Park St., Chelsea. Application materials online at​soundsights/​auditions.

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