Conductor Valery Gergiev leads the National Youth Orchestra through its first rehearsal with the maestro, at Purchase College outside New York City. Chris Lee hide caption

itoggle caption Chris Lee

Some of the 200 guitarists who took part in Rhys Chatham's A Crimson Grail at Lincoln Center's Out of Doors Festival in August 2009. YouTube hide caption

itoggle caption YouTube

The Benedict Music Tent in Aspen. Alex Irvin/courtesy of the Aspen Music Festival and School hide caption

itoggle caption Alex Irvin/courtesy of the Aspen Music Festival and School

Michael Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony have been consistent champions of American music of all shapes and sizes. Are there — or will there be — American symphonies that stand with those of Mozart and Beethoven, Mahler and Shostakovich? Bill Swerbenski/San Francisco Symphony hide caption

itoggle caption Bill Swerbenski/San Francisco Symphony

Maya Beiser performs a Tiny Desk Concert on April 9, 2013. Marie McGrory/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Marie McGrory/NPR

The Boston Pops rehearses for its Fourth of July Fireworks Spectacular on July 3, 2012, at the Charles River Esplanade. Paul Marotta/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Paul Marotta/Getty Images

At the Moab Festival in Utah, patrons can hike to a secret spot to hear concerts. Richard Bowditch/Moab Music Festival hide caption

itoggle caption Richard Bowditch/Moab Music Festival

Violinist Amandine Beyer holds Mozart's own violin backstage at Boston's Jordan Hall on Monday. Kathy Wittman/Courtesy of the Boston Early Music Festival hide caption

itoggle caption Kathy Wittman/Courtesy of the Boston Early Music Festival

Nathan Gunn and Sasha Cooke star in the new opera The Gospel of Mary Magdalene as Yeshua (the Hebrew name of Jesus) and the title character. San Francisco Opera hide caption

itoggle caption San Francisco Opera