Fronted by British-Nigerian lead singer Sade Adu, the Grammy-winning band Sade has seduced eardrums with a potent mélange of R & B, soul, and jazz for nearly 30 years. Performing songs from the new compilation album The Ultimate Collection, Sade will delight fans with greatest hits as well as a smattering of brand-new songs, melding soul-stroking vocals with eye-tickling dancing and onstage spectacle. Special guest John Legend will also throw his honeyed voice into the ring, soothing ears that have been damaged by the cacophony of city life and the screeching of prima-donna chalkboards.
The State Theatre was saved, as its website states, from "the ravages of time." Built in 1921 as a vaudeville and silent-film palace, the venue fell on hard times in the 1970s when disco balls replaced light fixtures and complex hand-slaps were substituted for tickets. In 2003, however, a $3 million renovation restored the State Theatre to much of its original glory, as crews painstakingly rehabbed the ornamental plaster and terracotta exterior. Inside the theater, a stunning chandelier sparkles more brightly than ever below the venue's signature dome.
The first of the two performances takes place on Thursday, April 8, and begins at 7:30 p.m. During the performance, conductor Courtney Lewis will treat audiences to a classical teaser of upcoming pieces highlighting the 2010–2011 concert season—including Mozart's Overture to The Magic Flute, Brahms's Allegro con spirito from Symphony No. 2, a selection from Rimsky-Korsakov's Scheherazade, and Rachmaninoff's Adagio from Symphony No. 2, among other delights. The second concert on Sunday, April 11, takes place at 2 p.m. and features conductor Sarah Hicks as she leads her audience through a potpourri of forthcoming arrangements for the approaching season. Samples from the orchestra's pops, special-presentation revues, and holiday and classical repertoire will treat casual and passionate listeners alike to a level of acoustic perfection that no computer speaker can replicate.
The season finale of the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra comes to a dramatic Deutschlandic conclusion, with a showcase of classical German music spanning three centuries. Join conductor, ivory tickler, and SPCO artistic partner Christian Zacharias, who has conducted both the Los Angeles and New York Philharmonic orchestras, as he begins the evening with an elegant performance of Piano Concerto in D Minor by C. P. E. Bach. Zacharias will then resume vertical posture to conduct Schumann's Spring Symphony, a piece composed from Schumann's fast-flowing heart and mind during his honeymoon period with pianist wife, Clara Wieck. Enjoy this evening of joyous classical music, and attend the SPCO before the offseason starts.