Artis—Naples will welcome the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Zell Music Director Riccardo Muti for two concerts in Hayes Hall March 2 and 4.
For more than 130 years, Chicago Symphony Orchestra has been acclaimed for its artistic partnerships since its founding by its first music director, Theodore Thomas. The orchestra has been led by such luminaries as Fritz Reiner, Sir Georg Solti, Daniel Barenboim, Pierre Boulez, Bernard Haitink, and, since 2010, by its tenth music director, Italian conductor Riccardo Muti. Muti’s tenure will conclude in June.
“The musicians of the great Chicago Symphony Orchestra have become my musical family. Making music with them has been one of the great joys of my life,” Muti said. “In these years that have been so difficult for so many people around the world, it is essential for us to continue sharing music together and connecting audiences to the arts and culture, the spiritual food for the soul.”
Under Muti’s artistic leadership, the orchestra will perform two programs, featuring core works from the orchestral catalog, for Naples audiences.
Repertoire includes Ludwig van Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7 and Symphony No. 8, Sergei Prokofiev’s Symphony No. 5, and Maurice Ravel’s colorful orchestration of Modest Mussorgsky’s musical tour of an art gallery, Pictures from an Exhibition. Perhaps less familiar to audiences is Anatoly Liadov’s evocative tone poem, The Enchanted Lake, considered by the composer to be one of his three best pieces. Liadov was one of the “Russian Five,” a hugely influential circle of nineteenth-century composers that included Alexander Borodin, César Cui, Mily Balakirev, and Modest Mussorgsky. Liadov taught at his alma mater, the St. Petersburg Conservatory along with his mentor Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov, and his most famous student was none other than Sergei Prokofiev.
The orchestra’s residency will also include a special performance with musicians from the Naples Philharmonic and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra on the Wang Chamber Music series, in a program including works by Oskar Böhme and Johannes Brahms, March 5.
In addition to the performances, Muti and a chamber ensemble of musicians from the orchestra will visit Immokalee High School to lead master classes for selected middle and high school students. These companion activities, organized with support from the Negaunee Music Institute at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, have become a signature of the CSO when on tour, making engagement with communities a priority whenever possible.
The Chicago Symphony Orchestra performances are part of the Visiting Orchestras series, which is sponsored by a generous gift from Judy and Verne Istock. Tickets and additional information are available here.