This English walnut would be moderately difficult to crack. Photo: David Noel Edwards

The Tanglewood 2020 Online Festival schedule in a nutshell

Navigating one's way from the bso.org home page to all the relevant schedule pages is probably a bit easier than driving a semi truck through downtown Boston during rush hour, but it is still not exactly straightforward, especially when it comes to seeing lists of paid content.

Lenox — It’s only mid-July, and the Boston Symphony Orchestra has already outdone itself with Tanglewood 2020 Online Festival content. But they’re just getting started. In the offing this summer is such a cultural feast  — of both free and paid content — that organizationally challenged arts journalists have begun to complain about losing their wits and getting overwhelmed as they attempt to navigate this unprecedented surfeit of concert programs, lectures, recitals and masterclasses.

Navigating one’s way from the bso.org home page to all the relevant schedule pages is probably a bit easier than driving a semi truck through downtown Boston during rush hour, but it is still not exactly straightforward, especially when it comes to seeing lists of paid content. (You must be logged into your BSO account see what you’ve purchased.) For example, because the Tanglewood Learning Institute has its own web address (tli.org), this page and  this page both describe the same TLI Shoptalk events. (Don’t panic. The duplicated content is functionally necessary.) Moreover, paid streaming content is available for a certain number of days but not the same number of days for all events. Each event’s listing vanishes upon expiration, replaced by links to newly released content.

The BSO’s online system effectively manages a complex buttload of scheduling and ticketing information, so there’s no reason to complain if it seems a bit labyrinthine at times. But there’s also no reason to feel stupid if you get a little confused. It’s a natural part of ageing.

Here, then, is the meat of the Tanglewood nut, the seven main categories of BSO online content (as of just a little while ago) with hyperlinks:

Great Performers in Recital at Tanglewood

Tanglewood Presents: Recitals from the World Stage

BSO Musicians in Recital

Tanglewood Learning Institute MasterPass

Tanglewood Learning Institute OpenForum

Tanglewood Learning Institute Shoptalks 

Tanglewood for Kids

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We don’t even want to know how much box office revenue the BSO loses each day because of this pandemic. It would depress us. That’s why it’s more important than ever for people who love the BSO to donate. Even the smallest gifts matter. Those who donate $100 or more will receive complimentary access to the complete season of streaming content.