The Boston Pops is an orchestra based in Boston, Massachusetts. It is a "pop orchestra" which is an orchestra that specializes mainly in popular music and some lighter classical style music.
The Boston Pops was founded in 1885, just four years after the Boston Symphony Orchestra. The Pops draws many of its musicians from the Boston Symphony Orchestra; though being in the Boston Symphony Orchestra is not a requirement to join The Boston Pops.
Generally speaking, The Pops play during the summer season, in more casual environments such as Symphony Hall in Boston and outdoors in the Edward A. Hatch Memorial Shell (also called the "Hatch Shell") also located in Boston. The song selections are made with the non-classical music listener in mind. Their more popular approach to music allows people who might never listen to any kind of classical or large band music to enjoy the sounds of the orchestra.
The Boston Pops have always played popular music, but of course popular music changes with the times. When the Pops first became well known in the 1930s, their claims to fame were novelty songs like "The Typewriter" which was popular at the time. The Pops also began playing their Fourth of July Pops concert and fireworks display, which is one of the largest 4th of July celebrations in the world. It has been estimated that somewhere between 200,000-400,000 people attend every year! The display became so well known that it is now broadcast every year on CBS.
Today The Boston Pops enjoy adapting more modern music from artists like Guster, Ben Folds, Rockapella, and Elvis Costello. It also composes some original work such as The Red Sox album, which features new arrangements of classic Fenway park songs. They also often have special guests join them in various roles such as Arlo Guthrie, Shaquille O'Neal, and Alec Baldwin.So for a completely different take on the orchestra scene, go check out The Boston Pops, they always have something new to hear. People who are interested in seeing the Boston Pops should also consider going to see the Boston Symphony Orchestra, as many of the same minds create the music for both.