Music to my ears

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October 7, 2013
By: Linda Koutsky
Linda Koutsky

I attended one of Osmo Vanskä’s farewell concerts and was surprised at the number of sniffles heard and tears being wiped from faces throughout the concert hall as he waved his final baton. Classical music is very important to Minnesotans.

It’s been proven again and again that more people attend arts and cultural events than sporting events yet here we are thinking of shelling out more money for another stadium while the Minnesota Orchestra can’t figure out how to pay their own musicians to play in the recently-renovated building. We have to support the arts. Our government has to support the arts.

But I was curious how much classical music was really out there. Lots! Many musicians from the big orchestras also get involved in other projects. You can often hear them in smaller, intimate settings or joined by a mix of other professionals or university faculty members. International musicians are often brought in as guests.

In addition to the many professional groups, there are numerous community orchestras dedicated to showcasing quality classical music. Some include Bloomington, Dakota Valley, Linden Hills, Northeast, Woodbury and Roseville.

You can help support the arts by calling your city council members and state legislators — and by attending concerts yourself. Here are more than enough to get you through this winter. Visit the web sites for ticket prices. 

MUSICIANS OF THE MINNESOTA ORCHESTRA (www.minnesotaorchestramusicians.org)

• Nov. 14, 7:30 p.m. & Nov. 15, 8 p.m. — Wagner, Mozart, and Brahms with former music director Stanislaw Skrowaczewski and pianist Lydia Artymiw (Ted Mann Concert Hall, Minneapolis

ACCORDO (co-sponsored by the Schubert Club, www.schubert.org/accordo)

Established in 2009, this chamber group plays at Christ Church Lutheran (Minneapolis), a national historic landmark designed by Eliel and Eero Saarinen.

• Dec. 9, 7:30 p.m. — with guest Julia Bogorad-Kogan, flute           

• Feb. 17, 7:30 p.m. — with guest Alessio Bax, piano

THE ATARIA SRING QUARTET (www.artariaquartet.com)

• Nov. 17 & 24, 3 p.m. — Shostakovich String Quartets (Sundin Music Hall, Hamlin University, St. Paul; Wayzata Community Church)

• Jan. 2, 9, 16, 23, noon — Schubert Club Courtroom Concerts (free, Landmark Center, St. Paul)

• Jan. 18, 7:30 & January 19, 4 p.m. — Hennepin Avenue United Methodist Church Concerts (free-will offering)

THE BAAKEN TRIO (www.bakkentrio.org)

• Feb. 16, 4 p.m. — seven Spanish songs for cello and piano (MacPhail Center for Music, Minneapolis)

CHAMBER MUSIC SOCIETY OF MINNESOTA  (www.chambermusicsocietymn.com)

• Dec. 8, 4 p.m. — pieces by Lutoslawski, Suk, and Brahms (Sundin Music Hall, Hamlin University, St. Paul)

• Feb. 23, 4 p.m. — world premiere of works written to celebrate society Maestro Stan Skrowaczewski’s 90th Birthday (Sundin Music Hall)

FREDERIC CHOPIN SOCIETY (www.chopinsocietymn.org)

• Nov. 10, 3 p.m. — guest artist: Behzod Abduraimov (Janet Wallace Fine Arts Center, Macalester College, St. Paul)

• Feb. 16, 3 p.m. — guest artist: Jean-Efflam Bavouzet (Janet Wallace Fine Arts Center)

HILL HOUSE CHAMBER PLAYERS (co-sponsored by the Schubert Club, www.schubert.org)

• Nov. 18 & 25, 7:30 p.m. — Much Ado About Nothing (James J. Hill House, St. Paul)

• Feb. 24 & March 3, 7:30 p.m. — Russian Romantics (James J. Hill House)

LYRA BAROQUE ORCHESTRA (www.lyrabaroque.org)

• Nov. 23,  8 p.m. — Italian-influenced virtuoso violinist-composers (Sundin Music Hall Hamline University, St. Paul)

• Jan. 25,  8 p.m. — Bach & the Baroque (Sundin Music Hall)

METROPOLITAN SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA (www.msomn.org)

• Nov. 24, 4 p.m. — Mahler’s Resurrection Symphony (free, Central Lutheran Church, Minneapolis)

MINNESOTA PHILHARMONIC ORCHESTRA (www.mnphil.org)

Founded in 1993 for players from a wide variety of backgrounds and orientations to perform works by underrepresented composers.

• November 9, 7:30 p.m. — Bigger is Better–Nature’s Vast Spaces (Sundin Music Hall, Hamlin University, St. Paul)

ST. PAUL CHAMBER ORCHESTRA (www.thespco.org)

Back in full swing; too many concerts to mention. Check out their online listening library—more than 250 full-length recordings of SPCO performances.

Send your comments or tips to WeekendTourist@mnpubs.com.