Colombian conductor Andrés Orozco-Estrada will preside over the CSO’s season-opening concerts. (Werner Kmetitsch photo)
Report: Conductor Klaus Mäkelä joins a flurry of late-season Mahler, and Riccardo Muti caps his four programs with a Berlioz spectacle.
By Lawrence B. Johnson
The Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s newly announced plans for its 2024-25 season are, if one might make such a distinction, intriguing and fraught with intrigue. First is the season itself and the bundle of enticing concerts it holds, not least an autumn-anchoring Beethoven program led by CSO music director emeritus for life Riccardo Muti and his season-ending return with a high-powered rarity, Berlioz’ “The Damnation of Faust,” a spectacle for orchestra, chorus and soloists.
But of course, what’s uppermost in the minds of the Chicago Symphony’s most ardent followers is the question of who will succeed Muti as music director and whether that answer might be forthcoming sometime in 2024-25. While mum remains the word at Symphony Center, from the orchestra world’s most active rumor mill, the website called SlippedDisc and its purveyor Norman Lebrecht, comes an unequivocal assertion that the choice has been made and that it’s “the worst-kept secret” in the biz. The CSO’s music director-elect, says Lebrecht, is the dazzling 27-year-old Finnish conductor Klaus Mäkelä, who indeed returns to the CSO for a pair of programs in the latter part of next season.
The CSO’s official reply to the Mäkelä rumor: silenzio, or hiljaisuus in Finnish. An orchestra spokesperson offered “no comment.” Read the full story »