Scrapped Asia tour prompts Boston Symphony Orchestra to hold pop-up concert

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LENOX — This Sunday, the Boston Symphony Orchestra offered a free pop-up concert for the public at the Linde Center for Music and Learning at Tanglewood in Lenox.

It's part of the fallout from the BSO's coronavirus-induced cancellation of its Asia tour: free pop-up concerts.

The acclaimed orchestra will throw open the doors to Symphony Hall free of charge on Feb. 16 for an impromptu performance dubbed "Concert for Our City." It's also planning a number of concerts at schools, homeless shelters and hospitals that won't be open to the public.

The orchestra had been scheduled to go on a four-city tour that included Seoul in South Korea, Taipei in Taiwan and Shanghai and Hong Kong in China from Feb. 6 to 16. But last week, it backed out amid concerns about the deadly virus in China.

Mark Volpe, the orchestra's CEO and president, said the BSO decided to scrap the entire tour after organizers in China canceled the Shanghai performance.

The Asia trip was to be the Boston orchestra's 29th international tour and its first visit to Seoul since its founding in 1881.

The Feb. 16 concert will include selections by Brahms, Dvorak, Tchaikovsky, Ginastera and George Walker, and it will feature Chinese composer Huang Ruo as vocal soloist in selections from his own "Folksongs for Orchestra."

The concert in Lenox occurred Sunday. An earlier version of this story was incorrect.



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