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#PBSForTheArts Continues on Great Performances with Two New Classical Music Concerts


John Williams. Photo © Todd Rosenberg Photography

#PBSForTheArts Continues on Great Performances with Two New Classical Music Concerts Starring Composer-Conductor John Williams and Opera Divas Isabel Leonard, Nadine Sierra and Ailyn Pérez This Fall on PBS

Features the Boston Symphony Orchestra and The Metropolitan Opera.

This fall, Great Performances celebrates the resiliency of the performing arts amid the age of COVID-19 with two new concerts spotlighting the reemergence of revered artists and arts organizations from the classical music scene. Opera stars Isabel Leonard, Ailyn Pérez and Nadine Sierra perform in Great Performances at the Met: Three Divas at Versailles, premiering Friday, October 8 at 10 p.m. on PBS (check local listings). Then, Great Performances celebrates the debut of a new violin concerto by legendary GRAMMY-, Emmy- and Oscar-winning composer-conductor John Williams with the Boston Symphony Orchestra in Great Performances: A John Williams Premiere at Tanglewood premiering Friday, November 12 at 9 p.m. on PBS (check local listings), and the PBS Video app.

In Great Performances at the Met: Three Divas at Versailles, three-time GRAMMY winner Isabel Leonard joins Nadine Sierra and Ailyn Pérez to perform timeless selections by Mozart, Offenbach and Bizet including “Voi che sapete” and “Belle nuit, ô nuit d’amour” along with beloved songs like “Bésame Mucho” and “Cielito Lindo.” The concert was recorded in May at the Royal Opera of Versailles in France and Met Opera soprano Christine Goerke hosts the broadcast Friday, October 8 at 10 p.m. on PBS.

Recorded in July from the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s summer home, Great Performances: A John Williams Premiere at Tanglewood is conducted by both BSO music director Andris Nelsons and Williams. The concert features virtuoso violinist Anne-Sophie Mütter performing the debut of Williams’ new concerto, as well as performances of Aaron Copland’s “Quiet City,” Igor Stravinsky’s Suite from “The Firebird” and “Starburst” by Jessie Montgomery, composer-violinist-educator and Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s newest composer-in-residence, premiering Friday, November 12 at 9 p.m. on PBS.

#PBSForTheArts is a multiplatform campaign that celebrates the resiliency of the arts in America during the COVID-19 pandemic shutdown and reopening, and features new performing arts content filmed within the constraints of the pandemic. Previous Great Performances programs include Romeo & Juliet from the National Theatre, Uncle Vanya, The Arts Interrupted and Vienna Philharmonic Summer Night Concert 2020, with the 2021 concert premiering Friday, August 27 at 9 p.m. on PBS (check local listings). The collection of #PBSForTheArts programs is available at and the PBS Video app. Curated conversation and digital shorts are also available on PBS social media platforms using #PBSForTheArts.

Throughout its nearly 50-year history on PBS, Great Performances has provided an unparalleled showcase of the best in all genres of the performing arts, serving as America’s most prestigious and enduring broadcaster of cultural programming. Showcasing a diverse range of artists from around the world, the series has earned 67 Emmy Awards and six Peabody Awards. Peek behind the curtain at the Great Performances website for exclusive videos, interviews, photos, full episodes and more. The series is produced by The WNET Group.

Great Performances is available for streaming concurrent with broadcast on all station-branded PBS platforms, including and the PBS Video App, available on iOS, Android, Roku streaming devices, Apple TV, Android TV, Amazon Fire TV, Samsung Smart TV, Chromecast and VIZIO. PBS station members can view many series, documentaries and specials via PBS Passport. For more information about PBS Passport, visit the PBS Passport FAQ website.

 For Great Performances at the Met: Three Divas at Versailles: Gary Halvorson directs with Mia Bongiovanni as Supervising Producer. Louisa Briccetti, Matt Dobkin, and Victoria Warivonchik are Producers. Peter Gelb is Executive Producer. Corporate support for Great Performances at the Met is provided by Toll Brothers. Series funding was also made possible by The Joseph and Robert Cornell Memorial Foundation, the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Arts Fund, The Philip and Janice Levin Foundation, Ellen and James S. Marcus, and Jody and John Arnhold.

For Great Performances: A John Williams Premiere at Tanglewood: Directed by Michael Beyer and produced by Bernhard Fleischer; Elmar Kruse is Executive Producer. Series funding for Great Performances was provided by The Robert Cornell Memorial Foundation, the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Arts Fund, the LuEsther T. Mertz Charitable Trust, Jody and John Arnhold, The Philip and Janice Levin Foundation, the Kate W. Cassidy Foundation, the Thea Petschek Iervolino Foundation, Rosalind P. Walter, The Starr Foundation, the Seton Melvin Charitable Trust, the Estate of Worthington Mayo-Smith, and Ellen and James S. Marcus.

 For Great Performances: Bill O’Donnell is Series Producer and David Horn is Executive Producer.

Websites:,, @GPerfPBS,, #GreatPerformancesPBS #PBSForTheArts

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The WNET Group creates inspiring media content and meaningful experiences for diverse audiences nationwide. It is the community-supported home of New York’s THIRTEEN – America’s flagship PBS station – WLIW21, THIRTEEN PBSKids, WLIW World and Create; NJ PBS, New Jersey’s statewide public television network; Long Island’s only NPR station WLIW-FM; ALL ARTS, the arts and culture media provider; and newsroom NJ Spotlight News. Through these channels and streaming platforms, The WNET Group brings arts, culture, education, news, documentary, entertainment and DIY programming to more than five million viewers each month. The WNET Group’s award-winning productions include signature PBS series Nature, Great Performances, American Masters, PBS NewsHour Weekend and Amanpour and Company and trusted local news programs MetroFocus and NJ Spotlight News with Briana Vannozzi. Inspiring curiosity and nurturing dreams, The WNET Group’s award-winning Kids’ Media and Education team produces the PBS KIDS series Cyberchase, interactive Mission US history games, and resources for families, teachers and caregivers. A leading nonprofit public media producer for nearly 60 years, The WNET Group presents and distributes content that fosters lifelong learning, including multiplatform initiatives addressing poverty, jobs, economic opportunity, social justice, understanding and the environment. Through Passport, station members can stream new and archival programming anytime, anywhere. The WNET Group represents the best in public media. Join us. 

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