In connection with its upcoming April 19 and 20 concerts featuring the Concerto for Oud in C minor by Palestinian-American composer Simon Shaheen, the Chicago Sinfonietta has posted a digital guide about civil rights and other struggles around the world. The guide includes background on Shaheen, whose compositions blend Western and Arabic music, as well as William Levi Dawson (1899-1990), whose Negro Folk Symphony will be performed on the same program. Topics addressed in the “Political Awakenings” guide include the 2011 Arab Spring demonstrations and protests and the American civil rights struggle. Mozart’s Overture to The Abduction of the Seraglio is also on the program, and the guide includes background on that opera’s comic plot, about an escape from a Turkish harem.

Posted April 4, 2013