A long history with the BSO

After a seven-month absence, James Levine returned to the podium at Symphony Hall last October. After a seven-month absence, James Levine returned to the podium at Symphony Hall last October. (Essdras M Suarez/Globe Staff/File 2010)
Globe Staff / February 26, 2011

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April 1972 A 28-year-old James Levine makes his conducting debut with the BSO.

October 2001 Levine is named BSO music director-designate.

Oct. 22, 2004 Levine’s Symphony Hall debut as the BSO’s 14th music director, the first American-born conductor in that position.

March 1, 2006 Levine trips and falls onstage after a performance, injuring his shoulder and requiring a months-long break to recuperate.

Dec. 19, 2006 Release of the first Levine-BSO CDs, with Lorraine Hunt Lieberson singing “Neruda Songs’’ recorded in concert months before her death. The recording wins a Grammy Award in 2008.

August 2007 Levine and orchestra embark on their first joint European tour.

July 6, 2008 Levine has emergency surgery to remove a cancerous kidney. He misses the rest of the Tanglewood season.

October 2009 Levine undergoes emergency surgery for a herniated disc, forcing him to miss several months at the BSO and the Metropolitan Opera, where he is also music director.

March 23, 2010 The BSO announces Levine will be out for the rest of the BSO season because of chronic back issues.

April 2010 Levine has a second back surgery. In all, he misses 60 percent of his scheduled performances in the BSO’s 2009-10 season, plus eight concerts at Tanglewood.

Oct. 2, 2010 After a seven-month absence, Levine returns to the podium with the BSO at Symphony Hall.

Feb. 24-March 1, 2011 Levine withdraws from conducting BSO performances of Mahler’s Ninth Symphony, citing ongoing back problems, combined with a viral infection.