Articles tagged with: Christopher Bell
Review: A Grant Park Music Festival concert celebrating singers and song featured the world premiere setting of Native American songs and stories about a star cluster called “The Pleiades,” which is visible to the naked eye in colder months. Latvian composer Ēriks Ešenvalds wrote it to be performed during the Chorus America Conference, which brought hundreds of the nation’s choruses large and small to Chicago. It played nicely in the out-of-doors in preamble to starlight and fireworks on the night before the summer solstice.
Review: Summer’s obviously just over the horizon: The musicians, chorus, maestro and devotees of the Grant Park Music Festival are already partying like the equinox has happened. As the centerpiece of the festival’s 84th summer opener, June 13-16, William Walton’s grand and colorful oratorio “Belshazzar’s Feast” felt like a reflection of the block-party atmosphere at Millennium Park.
Review: We’re well into another Grant Park Music Festival season that has demonstrated once again the value of conductor Carlos Kalmar’s artistic leadership through 18 summers. Where else but in Millennium Park, under Kalmar’s baton, might one hope to hear the likes of Swiss composer Frank Martin’s grand-scaled, inexplicably neglected oratorio “In terra pax,” a profound and moving reflection on the long-awaited end of the carnage that was World War II.
Preview: On a vigorous summer schedule for the Grant Park Chorus and its lately honored director, performances of Benjamin Britten’s monumental “War Requiem” June 28-29 pose the kind of challenges that choristers live for. “A piece of music has to weather the storms of time, and the ‘War Requiem’ has shown its staying power,” says Grant Park Chorus director Christopher Bell, who earlier this month received a lifetime achievement award at Chorus America’s annual convention in Seattle.
Report: Under the stars at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion in Chicago’s Millennium Park, the Grant Park Music Festival kicks off its 79th free-concert summer season on June 12. Here’s what looks new and promising week by week.