Performer: Cleveland Orchestra Chorus
Are there musical works, even pieces generally considered to be masterpieces, that no longer can catch the listening public’s interest, no matter how expertly they are performed? I have been wrestling with this question since this weekend’s Cleveland Orchestra and Chorus performance of Haydn’s The Seasons.
When Cleveland Orchestra music director Franz Welser-Möst had to bow out of this past weekend’s performances of Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana due to a recent back injury, the orchestra’s talented young assistant conductor, James Feddeck, inherited a high-profile assignment. The set of four concerts had been heavily promoted and were sold out.
Over the past several years the Cleveland Orchestra has instituted a number of new concert opportunities to attract a new, younger audience, in response to the “greying” of its traditional audience base and the diminished interest in a season-long commitment to regular concerts.
The Cleveland Orchestra closed its 2011/12 season on Thursday and Saturday, May 31 and June 2, with stirring performances of Giuseppe Verdi’s Requiem, with the orchestra’s Director of Choruses Robert Porco conducting the orchestra, the precisely-trained Cleveland Orchestra Chorus, and an unusually well-matched quartet of soloists.