Like a soap opera, a symphony can make its audience swoon with romance, tear up at sad passages, and squint with confusion if all its key players get amnesia at once. Watch musical melodrama unfold with today’s GrouponLive deal to see the New Millennium Orchestra at Harris Theater. For $20, you get two tickets for orchestra seating on Thursday, February 23, at 8 p.m. (up to a $50 value).
Making its full-orchestra debut at Harris Theater, the New Millennium Orchestra, under music director Francesco Milioto, continues to bolster the bridge between classical works and modern-day audiences with its unique blend of genre-bending arrangements. To launch the inaugural performance, Chicago Symphony Orchestra resident composer Mason Bates' Mothership opens an electro-acoustic wormhole that transforms the symphony into a buzzing hive of harmony headed by talented solo artists. Next, Claire Chase, Concert Artists Guild competition winner and founder and executive director of the International Contemporary Ensemble, wields her spellbinding flute to animate Saariaho's L'aile du songe and charm snakes from the horn section. The evening culminates with Brahms's lively, theatrical Symphony no. 4, which sends audiences out of the Harris Theater's glowing glass box into Millennium Park mulling over the work's web of allusions to Beethoven and the celebrity gossip of its day.
New Millennium Orchestra of Chicago
Collaborating with artists and groups as diverse as the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Grammy nominee Lupe Fiasco, New Millennium Orchestra of Chicago specializes in pushing the boundaries of symphonic music. Led by music director Francesco Milioto, the ensemble of nearly 30 leaps from classical to contemporary, working in live remixes, improv, mixed media, world music, and the occasional dance party along the way. The ensemble has a particular knack for opera—recent performances include Der Kaiser Von Atlantis, presented for free at the Pritzker Pavilion, and Verdi's Joan of Arc, a collaboration with Chicago Opera Theater.