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Classical Tue Jul 01 2014

Pulling Strings: For classical music in Chicago, you got a guy - July 2014

By Elliot Mandel

All of a sudden it's the middle of summer and the weather is consistently warm. Head outside with a picnic and plenty of wine and listen to some big ol' classics.

Ravinia: Chicago Symphony Orchestra plays New World
Dvořák's Ninth Symphony is a perfect match for the CSO's famous brass section and rich strings. The "New World Symphony" — written in 1893 while the composer was living in the U.S. — may or may not have been influenced by Native American and African American music, though it somehow sounds quintessentially American. The extended English horn solo is worth the price alone. Pianist Dejan Lazić performs Chopin's lush and stormy Piano Concerto No. 2 in f minor. Stravinsky's Suite from The Firebird rounds out a program of large-scale symphonic music. Krzysztof Urbanski conducts. Pavilion tickets start at $25; lawn is $10. Thursday, July 10, 8pm. 200 Ravinia Park Road, Highland Park.

Ravinia: Chicago Symphony Orchestra with Midori

A former child prodigy who rocketed to international fame, Japanese American violinist Midori has remained among the word's elite violinists. She'll perform one of the cornerstones of violin repertoire, Tchaikovsky's infectious Violin Concerto in D Major. Completing the Russian-themed program is Prokofiev's Suite from Romeo and Juliet. Conductor Susanna Mälkki makes her Ravinia debut having impressed the CSO's downtown audience in several appearances since 2011. Pavilion tickets start at $25; lawn is $15. Wednesday, July 16, 8pm. 200 Ravinia Park Road, Highland Park.

Grant Park Music Festival with Stephen Hough
Folk influences abound in this GPMF concert. Beethoven's Sixth Symphony, subtitled "Pastoral," seems to be a perfect symphony for summer in Chicago this year: sunny/stormy/sunny/stormy, etc. The Sixth instantly transports any audience to the countryside, making Millennium Park's mix of urban and nature a fitting environment. Dvořák's music always seems to contain a nod to his Czech background while rising to the heights of stirring Romantic music. Pianist Stephen Hough makes a too-rare stop in Chicago to perform Dvořák's too-rarely heard Piano Concerto. Grab a pilsner and enjoy the Pritzker Pavilion's excellent outdoor sound. Admission is free. Friday, July 18, 6:30pm. Saturday, July 19, 7:30pm. Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park.

Grant Park Music Festival with Christian Tetzlaff
Édouard Lalo's Symphonie Espagnole falls squarely in the tradition of French composers writing Spanish-themed music (see Bizet's opera about bullfighters singing in French). Orientalism aside, the Symphonie demands precision and flare which German violinist Christian Tetzlaff will undoubtedly provide in waves. The program includes real Spanish composer Cristóbal Halffter's Tiento, scored for "large orchestra." Admission is free. Wednesday, July 30, 6:30pm. Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park, Chicago.


Programs, artists, and prices subject to change. Tickets subject to availability.

About the author: Elliot Mandel photographs classical concerts and you should hire him for your next show. He also writes reviews and plays cello.

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Feature Thu Dec 31 2015

Our Final Transmission Days

By The Gapers Block Transmission Staff

Transmission staffers share their most cherished memories and moments while writing for Gapers Block.

Read this feature »


  Chicago Music Media

Alarm Magazine
Big Rock Candy Mountain
Boxx Magazine
Brooklyn Vegan Chicago
Can You See The Sunset From The Southside
Chicago Reader Music
Chicagoist Arts & Events
Chicago Music Guide
Chicago Singles Club
Country Music Chicago
Cream Team
Dark Jive
The Deli Chicago
Jim DeRogatis
Fake Shore Drive
Gowhere Hip Hop
The Hood Internet
Jaded in Chicago
Largehearted Boy
Little White Earbuds
Live Fix Blog
Live Music Blog
Loud Loop Press
Oh My Rockness
Pop 'stache
Pop Matters
Resident Advisor
Sound Opinions
Sun-Times Music Blog
Theft Liable to Prosecution
Tribune Music
UR Chicago
Victim Of Time
WFMU's Beware of the Blog
Windy City Rock


Abbey Pub
Andy's Jazz Club
Aragon Ballroom
Auditorium Theatre
Beat Kitchen
Bottom Lounge
Buddy Guy's Legends
The Burlington
California Clipper
Concord Music Hall
Congress Theater
Cubby Bear
Double Door
Elbo Room
Empty Bottle
Green Mill
The Hideout
Honky Tonk BBQ
House of Blues
Kingston Mines
Lincoln Hall
Logan Square Auditorium
Mayne Stage
The Mutiny
Old Town School of Folk Music
Park West
The Promontory
Red Line Tap
Reggie's Rock Club & Music Joint
The Riviera
Thalia Hall
The Shrine
Symphony Center
Tonic Room
Uncommon Ground
The Vic
The Whistler

  Labels, Promoters
  & Shops:

Alligator Records
Beverly Records
Bloodshot Records
Dave's Records
Delmark Records
Drag City
Dusty Groove
Flameshovel Records
Groove Distribution
He Who Corrupts
Jam Productions
Jazz Record Mart
Kranky Records
Laurie's Planet of Sound
Minty Fresh
Numero Group
mP Shows
Permanent Records
Reckless Records
Smog Veil Records
Southport & Northport Records
Thick Records
Thrill Jockey Records Touch & Go/Quarterstick Records
Victory Records

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Transmission is the music section of Gapers Block. It aims to highlight Chicago music in its many varied forms, as well as cover touring acts performing in the city. More...
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