It has been announced today that conductor Robert Spano is set to step down as Music Director of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra - in June 2021.
The 2020-2021 season will mark both his 60th birthday and his 20th year leading the ensemble - making him one of the longest-tenured music directors of any major American orchestra.
Following 2021, Maestro Spano will assume the orchestra's 'Conductor Laureate' title - and will continue to conduct the ensemble on a regular basis.
“It is a tremendous privilege to work with Robert Spano ... His masterful grasp of the orchestral idiom, of what it takes to bring the music to life, and of what it takes to engage the community in the adventure of new music make him one of the most significant voices in the orchestral world," Orchestra Executive Director Jennifer Barlament has said.
"His sense of humanity, humility and generosity make him an inspiring collaborator ... his impact on this institution and this city cannot be overstated and will continue for generations to come,” she has said.
“To end an intense artistic relationship is never an easy decision to contemplate, especially one as fruitful and inspiring as the one I have enjoyed as Music Director of this outstanding American orchestra ...," Maestro Spano has said.
"Twenty years is a good benchmark to balance the long-term commitment I have made to the ASO with the necessity of looking towards its future as well as my own," he has said.
"I look forward to many return visits in the years ahead."