The New York Philharmonic connects with up to 50 million music lovers annually through performances, education, broadcasts, and the Digital Archives. The 2016–17 season marks the Orchestra’s 175th anniversary and Music Director Alan Gilbert’s farewell season. The Philharmonic has always championed contemporary music, with current projects including the NY PHIL BIENNIAL. The annual free citywide Concerts in the Parks, Presented by Didi and Oscar Schafer, are complemented with Philharmonic Free Fridays and education programs, including the famed Young People’s Concerts and the New York Philharmonic Global Academy, collaborations with partners worldwide to train pre-professional orchestral musicians, often alongside performance residencies. America’s oldest symphony orchestra has appeared in 432 cities in 63 countries and long been a media pioneer, today sharing live performances through downloads and online. Alan Gilbert became Music Director in 2009 — succeeding titans including Bernstein, Toscanini, and Mahler.