The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, one of America’s finest orchestras, gave two performances of Peter Boyer’s Ellis Island: The Dream of America at the Heinz Hall for the Performing Arts on January 29 & 30, 2020, conducted by PSO Resident Conductor Andrés Franco. Actors Georgia Mendes and Benjamin Cherington of Carnegie Mellon University read the stories from the Ellis Island Oral History Project.

The two performances, presented through the Pittsburgh Symphony’s education program, were attended by approximately 4,000 children from the greater Pittsburgh area. These educational performances of Ellis Island originally had been scheduled during the same week in 2019, but had to be canceled due to severe cold weather. These performances were the first of Boyer’s music by the Pittsburgh Symphony.