New York Philharmonic iTunes Pass

When Alan Gilbert took over as music director of the New York Philharmonic in 2009, he was a celebrated conductor with a very small recorded output, unencumbered by a major-label contract and free to do something innovative.

I worked with the New York Philharmonic to put together the first classical iTunes Pass. $149.99 bought a subscription to receive 30 concerts from Alan’s inaugural season, each released within a few weeks of the performances. The pass included the world premiere of Magnus Lindberg’s EXPO and the hugely successful performance of Ligeti’s Le Grand Macabre.

At $149.99, this was hardly an impulse buy. If you treat it as 30 albums, though, this is one of the best-selling digital classical products of all time.