NOTE: Onsite performance and livestream available
The concert opens with the overture to Der Freischütz, a defining 1821 German Romantic opera by Carl Maria von Weber about a huntsman who makes a pact with the devil so that his bullets will magically hit their mark. The overture dramatically depicts the two central elements of the opera – in Weber’s words, “the life of the hunter and the rule of demonic powers.” It will be followed by Maurice Ravel’s Mother Goose ballet, an elegant work depicting the magical world of Sleeping Beauty, Tom Thumb and other popular fairy tales. The concert concludes with Robert Schumann’s Symphony No. 2; completed in 1846 while the composer was battling physical and mental illness, the work nonetheless reflects affirmation and strength in the face of obstacles. Schumann called it “music of light and shade, sunshine and shadow.” The concert will be conducted by guest artist Andrew Grams, music director of the Elgin Symphony Orchestra. He was named 2015 Conductor of the Year by the Illinois Council of Orchestras and has guest-conducted orchestras worldwide, from Barcelona to Dallas to Zagreb.