Captain America once said, "Twas music that soothed the savage beast." Although he was talking about his short-lived nemesis Dr. Angry Parakeet, it's just as true for animals of the human persuasion. Soothe your savage insides with today's Groupon: for $12, you get one orchestra-level ticket to the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra’s performance of Spring 2, classic songs of Schoenberg and Gershwin, on Sunday, June 6, at 2 p.m. (a $25 value). The Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra received the Scripps-Corbett Artist Award last year.
The Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra showcases music not commonly performed by large symphony orchestras, so each show is an uncommon musical experience. During Spring 2, the delicately constructed harmonies of Arnold Schoenberg and George Gershwin (two works each) float across Corbett Auditorium and into ears to tickle auditory nerves like pixies riding tiny ponies on eardrums. Two of the four pieces were inspired by literature. Schoenberg’s Transfigured Night was inspired by a Richard Dehmel poem about a shocking confession that affects two lovers, while Gershwin's Porgy and Bess Suite is inspired by DuBose Heyward’s racially charged 1925 novel about the inhabitants of the semi-fictional Catfish Row. Schoenberg's Five Pieces for Orchestra, op. 16, is an unsettling work that balances Gershwin's famous Rhapsody in Blue, which is performed by acclaimed solo pianist Michael Chertock.
While soaking in the 738-seat hall’s stately columns and cherry-wood-doused atmosphere, Groupon-toting music enthusiasts will lounge in comfy orchestra seating that boasts impressive leg room. Additionally, a tune-up and informal discussion led by the CCO’s musical director is offered 40 minutes before the show.
- Then, in what is perhaps the most extraordinary moment of the cantata, the chorus dropped out. The instruments followed alone, with a long lamentation that thinned out gradually to a pair of violins sounding a soft, halting minor second, like a last breath. – Mary Ellyn Hutton, Music in Cincinnati
- The conductor brought out [the music's] drama as well as its fun: the surprise finale made the audience laugh out loud. – Janelle Gelfand, Enquirer