Jonathon Heyward, the Music Director Designate of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, will not be conducting the BSO’s “Star-Spangled Celebration” concert at Rash Field Park on July 4, as previously announced by the Baltimore Office of Promotion and the Arts (BOPA).
The 8 p.m. concert will instead be conducted by Sameer Patel, according to an “Updated Fourth of July Schedule” distributed by BOPA this week.
A Michigan native recognized as one of America’s most exciting young conductors, Patel is the artistic director of the San Diego Youth Symphony. He and his wife, Shannon Cajka Patel, were among the guests at the White House this month during the State Dinner for Narendra Modi, the Prime Minister of India.
BOPA had previously announced that the Rash Field Park concert would be “under the baton of newly appointed Music Director Jonathon Heyward,” who has been named to start in that position this fall.
One of Heyward’s first performances as Music Director of the BSO will be during a free community concert at the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall on the afternoon of September 24, the final day of Artscape 2023. He’s also on the BSO’s calendar to conduct a Donor Appreciation Concert at the Meyerhoff at 7 p.m. on August 12.
The BSO’s July 4 concert at Rash Field Park, 201 Key Highway, will precede a 15-minute fireworks display over Baltimore’s Inner Harbor, starting around 9:30 p.m. In addition to its 8 p.m. concert, the BSO will present a “live encore performance” during the fireworks show. The spoken-word artist known as Wordsmith, who appeared with the BSO last July 4, will join again join the musicians as “narrator.”
Patel is also scheduled to conduct the BSO during its Star Spangled Spectacular concert at Oregon Ridge Park in Cockeysville at 8 p.m. on July 3; its Star Spangled Celebration at Boordy Vineyards in Hydes, Maryland, at 7:30 p.m. on July 6, and its Music for Maryland: Harford County concert at the APG Federal Credit Union Arena on the Harford Community College campus in Bel Air, Maryland, at 7:30 p.m. on July 8. The Boordy Vineyards concert will not include fireworks.