From an email sent to the orchestra’s mailing list:
October 25, 2017 – Anu Tali today announced that at the end of the 2018 / 2019 season, following the completion of her current contract, she will step down as music director of the Sarasota Orchestra to focus on her international career and guest conducting. She will have served as Music Director for six seasons.
Tali’s accomplishments with the Sarasota Orchestra are noteworthy. Since joining the organization in 2013, she has raised the artistic quality of the orchestra and conducted thrilling performances that have earned rave reviews. She has attracted an extraordinary group of guest artists from around the world, including the multi-Grammy Award-winning Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir. She conducted the American premiere of Erkki-Sven Tüür’s Strata and performed the debut performances in Florida of Heiner Goebbels’ Songs of Wars I Have Seen.
“I am very grateful to have been provided the privilege and opportunity to work with my incredible colleagues in the Sarasota Orchestra and to perform for the passionate audiences of this very special community,” said Tali. “What an exceptional experience this has been. To see full houses and the orchestra and community embracing a new artistic vision has been gratifying. Our accomplishments have led me to think that 2019 is the right time for me to begin the next chapter in my musical journey.”
“I look forward to sharing the magical moments on stage with everyone in the Sarasota and Manatee community for two more seasons, and I remain an advocate of the Sarasota Orchestra building a new concert hall,” said Tali.
Board Chair David Steves said, “Anu’s contributions to our orchestra and region have been impressive. She energized audiences, advanced our orchestra artistically and provided the foundation for the artistic case for a new concert hall. We respect her decision and are appreciative for all she has done for the Sarasota Orchestra. We will cherish every moment of the upcoming two seasons with Anu.”
President and CEO Joseph McKenna added, “I value and enjoy partnering with Anu. She is a brilliant musician and a remarkable person. I look forward to our continued collaboration as we advance the mission of the Sarasota Orchestra in the community.”
Daniel Jordan, Concertmaster, commented, “From the very first moments the Sarasota Orchestra worked with Anu, there was a special connection. She continues to bring her passion and high standards to our music making, and we look forward to continuing that journey over the next two seasons.”
Tali’s first three-year contract with the Sarasota Orchestra began in 2013. In 2016, her contract was extended an additional three years through the spring of 2019.
“A music director search committee, including representatives from the musicians, staff and Board, will be appointed by the end of the calendar year,” said Board Chair Steves. “This is a process we want to get right. We appreciate that Anu has afforded us the time to plan and perform a comprehensive search. And we are especially appreciative that our unparalleled momentum under Anu’s leadership has enriched lives and improved our community.”