New Bedford Symphony Orchestra Music Director David MacKenzie has informed the NBSO of his intention to retire at the end of the 2015-16 season. Maestro MacKenzie’s tenure with the NBSO will be in its tenth year at that time. He and his wife, Ka-Lea, have purchased a home in Hawaii and will make that their permanent residence.
“David MacKenzie has transformed the New Bedford Symphony in his time here and while we will be sad to see him go, we all think he and Ka-Lea richly deserve a retirement in paradise,” stated NBSO Board Chair Terry Wolkowicz. “His vision of artistic excellence for the orchestra, and his passion for educational outreach programs for children in our community, will be his legacy here on the South Coast.”
NBSO CEO Dave Prentiss added, “David has taken the NBSO to new heights. His ability to bring out the deepest artistic expression of the orchestra, and his commitment to educating young people about classical music, have been the driving force of the NBSO’s rise to prominence in the community and in the orchestral world.”
“I feel tremendously blessed to have had 10 years with this amazing orchestra,” stated Maestro MacKenzie. “Having the opportunity to collaborate with these phenomenal musicians in so many memorable concerts and with an outstanding leadership team in creating a thriving organization has made this time the most satisfying of my career. I am particularly proud of the NBSO’s balanced commitment to both artistic programs of the highest caliber and innovative educational programs for our community. It is always hard to leave, especially at such an exciting time in the orchestra’s history, but I believe it is the right time. It’s time for a new artistic vision to carry the orchestra into its next century.”
Maestro MacKenzie will lead the orchestra in its centennial 2015-16 season, which will culminate in May 2016 with his conducting a program of Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms and Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony. The NBSO will launch a national search for his successor next month, with a goal of having a new music director in place for September 2017.
To learn more about the NBSO, please visit www.nbsymphony.org.