Spring at the Cleveland Orchestra

I had the chance to speak with The Cleveland Orchestra’s Director of Public Relations Justin Holden and Media Relations Manager Rebecca Calkin about the upcoming happenings in the Orchestra. This season also marks the last season for Associate Conductor and Youth Orchestra Music Director, Brett Mitchell, who will be replaced by Vinay Parameswaran. Mitchell will be holding his last concert as Director of the Youth Orchestra on May 12th.  This also marks the Cleveland Orchestra’s 99th year, as next season they head into their second century. Priding themselves on attracting a large audience of young people to their concerts, the Cleveland Orchestra seeks to have the youngest classical music audience in the country and they offer specific programs to do just that. The Cleveland Orchestra is acclaimed worldwide, and Case Western Reserve University students have the unique privilege of incredibly close access to their home base. So, if finals get you down and classical music may be your only fix, head to the beautiful Severance Hall for a night of classy entertainment.


  1. What concerts are upcoming for the orchestra?


Remaining in the 2016-2017 Severance Hall season, through the beginning of June we have:


  • Strauss’ “Don Quixote” with members of The Cleveland Orchestra as soloists April 20-22
  • An innovative, made-for-Cleveland opera production, ”Pelléas and Mélisande”, May 2, 4, 6
  • A theatrical performance of Mendelssohn’s ”A Midsummer Night’s Dream”, May 11, 13, 14
  • Haydn’s “The Miracle” and a world premiere Cleveland Orchestra commission by Daniel R. Lewis Young Composer Fellow Anthony Cheung on May 18-20
  • Internationally renowned pianist Murray Perahia plays Beethoven on May 25 – 27
  • At the Movies: West Side Story. The film is screened with the music score performed live by The Cleveland Orchestra, June 1 – 4


  1. Has the orchestra done “Don Quixote” before?


Yes. The Cleveland Orchestra has performed Strauss’ “Don Quixote” several times before. Most recently, Music Director Franz Welser-Möst conducted it in March of 2006. The first performance of this work was in 1932 under the direction of the Orchestra’s first music director, Nikolai Sokoloff.


  1. Which orchestra members will be performing as soloists? Have they performed as soloists before?


For “Don Quixote,” principal cello Mark Kosower and principal viola Wesley Collins will be performing. Mr. Collins was the soloist for Mozart and Tchaikovsky pieces that were performed earlier this year in a chamber music recital as part of our residency at Indiana University. This will be his first time as a soloist as part of the Severance Hall season. Mr. Kosower has been featured as a soloist many times at Blossom Music Festival and during residencies in Miami and at Indiana University. His most recent solo appearance as part of our Severance Hall subscription season was in April 2014, performing Dvořák’s Antonin Cello Concerto in B minor, op. 104. Frank Rosenwein, principal oboe, will be the featured soloist in the Vaughan Williams Concerto for Oboe and String Orchestra. Mr. Rosenwein has also had numerous solo appearances at Severance Hall, at Blossom and during residencies. His most recent Severance Hall solo was in September 2012, playing Strauss’ Oboe Concerto in D major under the direction of Music Director Franz Welser-Möst.


  1. What is the easiest or cheapest way for students to get tickets to a concert?


Join the Student Advantage Program. It is free to join for all full-time college students with a valid student ID. Once you’re a member, you can purchase $15 tickets to classical concerts, with tickets made available beginning the Monday prior to the concert. This program also applies to our summer season at Blossom Music Center. If you plan to attend several concerts throughout the year, the Frequent Fan card is the best option for students. A one-time payment of $50 gets you access to all The Cleveland Orchestra Severance Hall classical concerts you could want for one year, plus the same benefits of the Student Advantage Program.


  1. Anything else you would like to add?

The Cleveland Orchestra is committed to having the youngest classical music audience in the country. We are already well on our way, with over 20 percent of our classical concert audience under the age of 25. In addition to the incredible music performed by one of the best orchestras in the world, Severance Hall is also one of the world’s most beautiful concert halls. Enjoying live classical music here is something everyone in Cleveland must experience.