5 Things for music lovers to do in Chicago this week

By Stephen Raskauskas |

This week, the Mariinsky comes to Chicago, some of the world’s best dancers perform under one roof, and more.

Hear Gergiev conduct the Mariinsky at Symphony Center

Fom Russia, the Mariinsky Orchestra comes to Chicago’s Symphony Center for a single performance. Hear maestro Valery Gergiev, artistic and general director of the Mariinsky Theatre, lead the esteemed Mariinsky Orchestra in performances of Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 9 and Strauss’s Ein Heldenleben. Russian pianist Denis Matsuev joins for a performance of Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 2.

Details: Wednesday, November 9 at 8:00 pm at Symphony Center located at 220 S Michigan Ave. Chicago, IL 60604. More on CSO’s website.

Watch three rarely-performed one-act operas

Northwestern’s Ryan Center for the Musical Arts (Photo: Tom Rossiter)

Sometimes, the best places to see great opera can be at your local colleges and universities. This November, Northwestern University’s Bienen School of Music is presenting three rarely performed one-act operas under a single bill: Moments of Mortality. This means that Northwestern students get opportunities to develop their craft, and you get the opportunity to experience repertoire that’s rarely performed: Riders to the Sea by Ralph Vaughan Williams, Le pauvre matelot by Darius Milhaud, and Savitri by Gustav Holst.

Details: Performances run November 10, 12, 17, and 19 at the Ryan Opera Theater, Ryan Center for the Musical Arts, Northwestern University, 70 Arts Circle Evanston, IL. More information on Northwestern’s website.

Warm up with flamenco duos for piano and guitar

The concerto hall at PianoForte Chicago

The PianoForte salon presents Spanish pianist María Márquez Torres and Mexican guitarist Andrea Dinorah Salcedo in a performance of flamenco music. Enjoy both solo works for piano and guitar, as well as duos featuring both artists, including works by Manuel M. Ponce, Astor Piazzolla, Enrique Granados, and Ernesto Lecuona.

Details: Saturday, November 11 at 8:00 pm at PianoForte Studios located at 1335 South Michigan Ave Chicago, IL. More info on PianoForte‘s website.

Attend the premiere of Augusta Read Thomas’s “Sonorous Earth”

Composer Augusta Read Thomas

The Chicago Philharmonic and 2017 Grammy award-winning Third Coast Percussion team up for the world premiere of Augusta Read Thomas’s Sonorous Earth. The new commission features prominent use of bells, which Thomas said: “can be used to celebrate grand occasions, hold sacrificial rites, keep a record of events, give the correct time, celebrate births and weddings, mark funerals, caution a community, enhance any number of religious ceremonies, and are even hung around the necks of animals. As carriers of history and culture, of numerous shapes, sizes, types, decorative patterns, and of diverse weights, functions, and cultural connotations, bells enrapture and inspire.” Also featured on the program are Joan Tower’s Fanfare for the Uncommon Woman No. 5 and Mozart’s Symphony No. 41, “Jupiter.”

Details: Sunday, November 13 at 3:00 pm at the Harris Theater for Music and Dance located at 205 E Randolph St, Chicago, IL 60601. For more infotmation, visit the Chicago Philharmonic’s website.

See some of the world’s best dancers all under one roof

The Auditorium Theatre, one of the city’s oldest and most venerable venues, is celebrating the 50th anniversary of its re-opening. Throughout its long history, the Auditorium has  presented some of the world’s greatest dancers and dance companies. For its anniversary celebration, it brings together artists from around the world, including members of American Dance Theater, American Ballet Theatre, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Joffrey Ballet, MOMIX, New York City Ballet, Parsons Dance, San Francisco Ballet, Suzanne Farrell Ballet, Vienna State Ballet, and Washington Ballet.

Details: Saturday, November 12 at 7:30 pm at the Auditorium Theatre located at 50 E Congress Pkwy, Chicago, IL 60605. More info on the Auditorium Theatre’s website.