Conlon’s swan song at May Festival’s helm has personal touch
Pieces look back on his 36 years as music director
By Rick Pender
May 16, 2016
CINCINNATI—This year marks James Conlon’s 36th leading the Cincinnati May Festival — and his final year as its music director.
The 143-year-old May Festival, the oldest continuous choral celebration in the Western Hemisphere, returns May 20-28. It will be the final event at Cincinnati Music Hall before it closes for an 18-month, $125 million renovation.
Conlon, who becomes music director laureate, will continue to conduct at the festival occasionally. For his final official season as the May Festival maestro, he said, “I decided to program a festival that would invoke some of my fondest memories of Cincinnati.”