In Thursday’s (3/12) Chicago Tribune, John von Rhein writes, “Ravinia Festival patrons are feeling the pinch in their pocketbooks along with everybody else. That fact, plus stepped-up competition from the free symphonic concerts at Millennium Park in downtown Chicago, has prompted the summer home of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in suburban Highland Park to emphasize affordability and accessibility in its 2009 season of classical and music theater events. Outlining additional programming for the 73rd season, which will run June 5 to Sept. 19, President and CEO Welz Kauffman said audience enthusiasm for Ravinia’s installing video screens in the pavilion for selected concerts last season has prompted the festival to make live video a fixture for all Chicago Symphony concerts this summer. In addition, ticket prices in the pavilion, averaging $25, will be frozen at 2007 and 2008 prices. … Along with the Abraham Lincoln bicentennial, Ravinia will celebrate the 200th anniversary of Felix Mendelssohn‘s birth with his Symphonies Nos. 1, 3 (‘Scottish’) and 4 (‘Italian’), in CSO concerts conducted by music director James Conlon. Misha and Cipa Dichter will give the world premiere of Mendelssohn’s piano four-hands arrangement of his ‘Songs Without Words.’ ”
Posted March 13, 2009