Bringing Classical Music to Life**
Chicago Sinfonietta showcased an amazing trio of powerful female artists at the De Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) performance on Monday, November 11th at the Chicago Symphony Center. I have season tickets but that one performance was worth the entire package! Sinfonietta breathes new life and diversity into classical music.
Award-winning scholar and violin virtuoso Ade Williams is a revelation of talent, skill and passion. Amazingly, she first debuted on the Chicago Sinfonietta stage in 2004 at the age of 6 years old! She is now 15 and very much in control of her talent.
According to her bio, “Along with two cousins, she also performs in a trio named SugarStrings that began at the Hyde Park Suzuki Institute, who’s Founder and Executive Director is Sinfonietta violinist Lucinda Ali Landing. Adé enjoys time with friends and family (especially little brother, cellist Jonathan), ballet, acting, soccer, movie classics, and now blogging her musical adventures on social media through “AdéBows.””
Conductor Mei-Ann Chen commanded the stage with precision and presence during the evening. Her connection with the orchestra was obvious to anyone in the theatre. I wonder if the orchestra was playing for her more than us? Either way, the outcome was outstanding!
Chicago Tribune classical critic John von Rhein, in assessing her leadership, recently said this: “The city’s most brazenly unconventional symphony orchestra is ever looking for ways to shake up the classical music experience in ways that demolish boundaries and bring in more diverse audiences. In taking on this particular challenge, Mei-Ann Chen firmly connects her ambitious artistry to the Sinfonietta’s quarter-century heritage of diversity, inclusion and service to the community.” As one of the few female conductors, Chen was interviewed by GlassCeiling.com about how to find your voice and reach the pinnacle in a male dominated profession.
International award-winning vocalist Elizabeth Norman wowed the crowd with her interpretation of Balada 1 from Osvaldo Golijov’s Ainadamer accompanied by members of the DePaul University Singers. Norman has gained an international reputation as an accomplished interpreter of contemporary composers.
Smooth and melodic, Elizabeth’s voice reminded me of summer days and aspirations. I was glad to learn that she has long-standing ties with Chicago and the Sinfonietta because I plan to attend future performances.
Thanks to Roger Crockett, the Metropolitan Club of Chicago and the Chicago Sinfonietta for hosting the Pre-season Sinfonietta Soiree which included a preview performance this season’s work and an opportunity to purchase a season package. I may have gone another year without the pleasure of the Sinfonietta.
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