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While the author Maurice Edwards' history of the Brooklyn Philharmonic centers on this great institution, it also encompasses the greater subject of the vibrant world of music and culture in New York during the second half of the 20th century and the opening decade of the 21st. Edwards begins with a look at the orchestra's 19th-century forerunner and traces the current orchestra's beginnings under its founder and first music director Siegfried Landau. The eras of succeeding music directors Lukas Foss, Dennis Russell Davies, and Robert Spa are examined in detail, as is the evolution of the Brooklyn Philharmonic into the official house orchestra of the equally invative and influential Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM). More than two dozen historical photographs and illustrations are included, and an 80-page appendix provides a detailed listing of the orchestra's extraordinary programs, including the famous Marathons.
Maurice Edwards joined the modern Brooklyn Philharmonic at its inception in 1954. He later served as executive director and artistic director before becoming the official archivist upon his retirement.