Esplanade Concerts

Esplanade Concerts

July 4
Arthur Fiedler (1894-1979), a violinist for the Boston Symphony Orchestra, started this outdoor concert series on July 4, 1929. The first concerts were held under a temporary wooden shell along the banks of the Charles River in Boston, which has since been replaced by the Hatch Memorial Shell, a gift presented to the city in 1940. The concerts are free, and it is not uncommon for hundreds of thousands to gather on the grassy riverbank or listen to the concerts from boats moored in the Charles River lagoon for the Fourth of July holiday. A musically synchronized fireworks display follows the concert.
During the Bicentennial celebration in 1976, the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra performed a spectacular rendition of Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture . The music was accompanied by the firing of live cannons, the ringing of nearby church bells, and fireworks.
See also Boston Pops
CONTACTS:
Boston's Fourth of July
222 Berkeley St. 14th Fl.
Boston, MA 02116
888-484-7677 or 617-267-2400; fax: 617-267-3303
www.july4th.org
SOURCES:
MusFestAmer-1990, p. 211
References in periodicals archive ?
While Fiedler had been conducting Esplanade concerts since 1929, the idea of adding fireworks, cannons and bells sparked new life into the well-known musical event.
Mugar organized the first Esplanade Concerts on the Charles River with former Boston Pops conductor Arthur Fiedler, whose dream was to establish a series of free outdoor orchestral concerts for the people of Boston.
The Boston Pops Esplanade concert concludes at 10 p.
Of all the Pops concerts, the Fourth of July Esplanade concert is the most thrilling to produce because, through the medium of music, hundreds of thousands of people on the Esplanade and millions more on TV can share in this grand celebration of this country's independence," said Lockhart.