Skip to main content

Northwestern University Music in May

Bienen School’s spring season continues with an impressive lineup of music events

  • University Singers to present program evoking outdoor images of nature in spring
  • Cheng-Chow Trio’s Skyline Piano Artist Series features works for four to six hands
  • Carlisle Floyd’s American opera “Susannah” is set in rural Tennessee
  • Mahler’s Resurrection Symphony, May 27 Evanston and May 29 at Millennium Park 

EVANSTON, Ill. --- A vocal master class led by Metropolitan Opera star Matthew Polenzani; four opportunities to experience Carlisle Floyd’s opera “Susannah”; and a University Singers choral program intended to evoke outdoor images of nature in spring are among the May music events on Northwestern University’s Evanston campus. 

Presented by the University’s Henry and Leigh Bienen School of Music, the upcoming programs will feature an impressive lineup of guest artists, music faculty and student ensembles.

Additional highlights include a May 23 Jazz Small Ensembles program of original compositions by Northwestern jazz studies students and two Memorial Day weekend performances of Mahler’s Resurrection Symphony featuring the combined artistry of Northwestern University’s Symphony Orchestra, University Chorale and Bienen Contemporary/Early Vocal Ensemble and the Apollo Chorus of Chicago. The May 27 performance of Mahler’s famous work will take place in Evanston at Pick-Staiger Concert Hall, and the May 29 program will be held outdoors at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion in downtown Chicago’s Millennium Park. 

All ages are welcome to attend a May 24 program that combines astronomy visualizations of Venus, Jupiter and Pluto projected on stage with music by Holst and Strauss. The event is sponsored by Northwestern's Center for Interdisciplinary Exploration and Research in Astrophysics, (CIERA). Weather permitting, audience members will have the opportunity to join Northwestern astronomers on the Arts Green West for a post-concert telescopic view of the evening sky.

VENUES 

All May programs listed below are open to the public. They will take place on Northwestern University’s Evanston campus at the Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Center for the Musical Arts’ Mary B. Galvin Recital Hall, and David and Carol McClintock Choral and Recital Room, 70 Arts Circle Drive; Pick-Staiger Concert Hall, 50 Arts Circle Drive; Regenstein Hall’s Master Class Room, 60 Arts Circle Drive; Alice Millar Chapel, 1870 Sheridan Road, or the Jay Pritzker Pavilion at Millennium Park, 201 East Randolph St., in downtown Chicago, as noted.

TICKETS 

The Bienen School Ticket Office is located at the southeast entrance of Pick-Staiger Concert Hall. Concert ticket prices are offered at three levels: the first for the general public and the second for full-time students with IDs. Northwestern faculty and staff with a valid Wildcard receive a 15 percent discount off the general public ticket price.

For more information, contact the Bienen School of Music Concert Management Office at 847-491-5441 or visit concertsatbienen.org. To order tickets, call 847-467-4000 or visit concertsatbienen.org.  

SERIES BROCHURES/FURTHER INFORMATION

For series brochures or further information, call 847-491-5441 or email requests to events.music@northwestern.edu. To join the Bienen School’s concerts and events list and receive a monthly events newsletter as well as special discount offers, send your email address to events.music@northwestern.edu.

MAY 2016 MUSIC EVENTS 

  • Keyboard Conversations, “Musical Pictures,” 7:30 p.m. Friday, May 6, Pick-Staiger Concert Hall. Pianist Jeffrey Siegel’s program includes works by Sibelius and Rachmaninoff, as well as Mussorgsky’s “Pictures at an Exhibition.” His Keyboard Conversations series features “concerts with commentary” that provide background on the works played and conclude with a brief Q&A session. Aside from these concerts, Siegel has performed as a soloist with the Berlin Philharmonic, the New York Philharmonic, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and other prestigious ensembles. Tickets are $22 for the general public and $16 for students with valid IDs.
  • Flute faculty recital by John Thorne, 7:30 p.m. Sunday, May 8, Ryan Center’s Mary B. Galvin Recital Hall. Previously associate principal flute of the Houston, San Antonio, Florida West Coast and New World symphonies, John Thorne appears regularly with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra (CSO) and is principal flutist of the Chicago Philharmonic. As a member of the Grand Teton Music Festival, he performs both orchestral and chamber music concerts. With CSO piccolo player Jennifer Gunn and pianist Kay Kim, a regular CSO and Chicago Chamber Musicians collaborator, he will perform Franck’s Sonata in A Major as well as music of Blavet and Debussy. Tickets are $8 for the general public and $5 for students with valid IDs.
  • University Singers: Afternoon on a Hill, 7:30 p.m. Saturday, May 14, Ryan Center’s Mary B. Galvin Recital Hall.University Singers will present a program evoking outdoor images of nature in spring. Listeners will encounter Charles Stanford’s “The Blue Bird” and Britten’s “Five Flower Songs,” Eric Barnum’s “Afternoon on a Hill” and Barber’s “Under the Willow Tree.” Bienen School alumnus Ned Rorem’s “While all things were in quiet stillness” and Gerald Finzi’s “Thou didst delight my eyes” also will be performed. Conducted by Bienen School faculty member Albert Pinsonneault and Kevin Vondrak, graduate assistant conductor, the concert will include works by Dominick Argento, Kevin Memley and Leland Sateren. Charles Foster will be the featured pianist. Tickets are $6 for the general public and $4 for students with valid IDs.
  • Symphonic Wind Ensemble, 7:30 p.m. Sunday, May 22, Pick-Staiger Concert Hall. The Symphonic Wind Ensemble welcomes 30 distinguished brass and percussion alumni to perform the first half of the evening concert. The program also features arrangements and compositions by Northwestern alumni Timothy Higgins, Brett William Dietz and Michael Martin. Bienen School faculty member Mallory Thompson, director of bands, will conduct the Wind Ensemble and the alumni brass ensemble in a program featuring Copland’s “Fanfare for the Common Man,” Michael Martin’s arrangement of Shostakovich’s “Festive Overture,” Brett William Dietz’s “Pandora's Box” and the world premiere of Martin’s “Lontano:” Symphony for Wind Ensemble and more. Tickets are $8 for the general public and $5 for students with valid IDs.
  • Evening of Brass: Solar System Symphony, 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, May 24, Pick-Staiger Concert Hall. Bienen School faculty member Gail Williams will direct a program that will combine astronomy and music and take audience members on a tour across the solar system, from the volcanoes of Venus and the many moons of Jupiter to the icy plains of Pluto. Astronomy visualizations will be displayed onstage as the Bienen School’s Brass Ensemble performs music from Holst’s “The Planets,” Strauss’ “Also sprach Zarathustra” and other works. The concert will include the world premiere of Timothy Higgins’ Sinfonietta. After the show, (weather permitting), audience members will have the opportunity to join Northwestern astronomers on the Arts Green West for a view through a telescope. All ages are welcome. This program is sponsored by Northwestern's Center for Interdisciplinary Exploration and Research in Astrophysics, (CIERA) and created by physics and astronomy graduate student Kyle Kremer. Tickets are $6 for the general public and $4 for students with valid IDs. 
  • Philharmonia, 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 26, Pick-Staiger Concert Hall. The program will feature Walton’s “The Wise Virgins: Suite,” Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto in A Major, and Britten’s “The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra” (Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell). Narrated by the Bienen School’s Bernard J. Dobroski, professor of music education, the program will be conducted by Bienen School faculty member Robert G. Hasty, and graduate conducting student Vincent L. Povázsay. Andrew Hudson will be the featured clarinet soloist. Tickets are $6 for the general public and $4 for students with valid IDs. 

For more information, call the Bienen School of Music Concert Management Office at 847- 491-5441 or visit concertsatbienen.org or Northwestern’s new Arts Circle website at www.artscircle.northwestern.edu. To order tickets, call the Bienen School Ticket Office at 847-467-4000 or visit concertsatbienen.org.  

Editor's Picks

Back to top