Music Reviews

I-House and Harris  Theater host unusual performances

I-House and Harris Theater host unusual performances

What: “La Voix Humaine” and “Gianni Schicchi” Where: Harris Theater (205 E. Randolph St.) When: Through Feb. 14 Tickets: cot.org By M.L. RANTALA Classical Music Critic The opening night for the first of two performances of a double bill proved to be a winner for Chicago Opera Theater on Saturday. General director Andreas Mitisek has(…)

A towering “Nabucco” at Lyric Opera shows off Verdi’s early masterpiece

What: “Nabucco” Where: Lyric Opera, 20 N. Wacker Dr. When: Through Feb. 12 Phone: 312-332-2244 By M.L. RANTALA Classical Music Critic Lyric Opera of Chicago’s first new offering of the year is “Nabucco,” the opera which helped to establish Verdi early in his career. This production features stellar singing, dramatic stage dressing, and unusual costumes(…)

McGill and Marlboro musicians at Mandel: red hot chamber music

By M.L. RANTALA Classical Music Critic The Marlboro Music Festival, founded in 1951 by Rudolf Serkin and several others, takes place over seven weeks every summer at Marlboro College in southern Vermont. Experienced musicians work with and mentor young talent. They all study and rehearse great works of the chamber music repertoire and offer public(…)

A splendid evening spent in the 14th century with the Newberry Consort

By M.L. RANTALA Classical Music Critic Lots of concerts are presented under an umbrella title that attempts to both accurately describe the links among the various works performed and offers an appealing concept to the public. But usually the concept is over-broad (“Love and War”) with the music unable to effectively support the dramatic idea.(…)

Let us be merry, put sorrow away: Anonymous 4 at Rockefeller Chapel

Let us be merry, put sorrow away: Anonymous 4 at Rockefeller Chapel

By M.L. RANTALA Classical Music Critic This is the time of year when even the most hard-hearted among us stop and take pause when they hear good, cheering holiday music. Rockefeller Chapel was stuffed full on Sunday afternoon for a concert of Christmas music of another kind: Of the kind most of us have never(…)

Review: Emerging composers first opera: flawed yet glorious

Review: Emerging composers first opera: flawed yet glorious

By M.L. RANTALA Classical Music Critic What: “Bel Canto” by Jimmy Lopez Where: Lyric Opera, 20 N. Wacker Dr. When: Through Jan. 17, 2016 Phone: 312-332-2244 Critics of opera sometimes laugh off the art form as irrelevant. Lyric Opera of Chicago’s first main stage world premiere in over a decade is anything but that. “Bel(…)