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First Woman Conductor Appointed to Major American Orchestra

In an important advancement for women conductors and musicians, the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra appointed Marin Alsop to the post of music director this week. Alsop will be the first woman to conduct a major American symphony. She was appointed despite opposition from some of the orchestra’s musicians, with strong support from the Board of Directors who made the final decision.

Alsop was the first woman to conduct a major British orchestra in her post as the principal conductor at the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra in Britain. She has said that she hopes her appointment will help other women conductors and musicians, and told the New York Times, “Hopefully this will break a little bit of a pattern not only for women in orchestras but for women in other fields as well.”

LEARN MORE & DISCUSS on Ms. magazine’s blog at ms.musings.net

Sources:

Baltimore Symphony Orchestra; The New York Times 7/21/05; The Associated Press 7/19/05

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