BOSTON -- Boston Symphony Orchestra music director designate Andris Nelsons is stepping down as music director for the City of Birmingham Symphony at the end of the 2014-15 season, when his contract there expires.
In a prepared statement Nelsons said, "With an extremely heavy heart I have reached the decision not to continue in my role as music director with my beloved CBSO after the 2014-15 season. I have enjoyed five great seasons with this incredible orchestra and, while I look forward to another two in my current role, this difficult decision comes in view of my new position with the Boston Symphony Orchestra alongside my wish to protect precious time with my young family."
In 2008, Nelsons, a then relatively unknown conductor, was unanimously invited to be music director by the CBSO's players, management and board of trustees following a private concert and recording session. Since his appointment, he and the orchestra have created many "once in a lifetime" performances such as Wagner's "Lohengrin" and the 50th anniversary performance of Britten's War Requiem in Coventry Cathedral. The current season sees him lead the CBSO on its biggest-ever touring schedule, with 35 overseas concerts over the next 12 months.