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2020-2021 SEASON (original)

Concert Narratives

*Please find our originally planned 20-21 Season schedule.

Due to coronavirus pandemic, we regret to inform that these concerts have been cancelled.

if you would like to view the Krannert Center 20-21 Season lineup, click here.


Sinfonia da Camera premieres its season in celebration of Krannert Center’s recent50thanniversary. Over the past 36 years, Sinfonia has been an integral part of the Center’s history,contributingmany notable performances. The evening commences with Elgar’s Cockaigne Overture, with its lively themes serving to musically portray Maestro IanHobson’s English birthplace. As requested by patrons last season, Hobson will then take the stage as both conductor and pianist for Rachmaninoff’s instantly recognizable and virtuosic Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini. Following intermission, Sinfonia will accompany the winner of its annual youth concerto competition before concluding the program with the iconic and crowd-pleasing Symphony No. 5, a continuation of their multiyear Beethoven cycle.


Elgar: Cockaigne Overture
Rachmaninoff: Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, Op. 43

2020 Youth Concerto Competition Winner

Beethoven: Symphony No. 5 in C Minor, Op. 67


With works by Weber, Hindemith, and Bartók, this program has been crafted to showcase Sinfonia da Camera’s skill and agility. Composed in a more Classical style, Weber’s Overture to Oberon is a collage of melodic fragments from the opera and utilizes a technique of leitmotif writing that would later be incorporated in the works of Richard Wagner. Hindemith’s Symphonic Metamorphosis on Themes by Carl Maria von Weber borrows incidental themes composed by Weber, which Hindemith then transforms throughout the grand four-movement work. Following intermission, Sinfonia concludes the program with Bartók’s masterpiece Concerto for Orchestra. Perhaps Bartók’s most popular work, the ingenious composition expertly features each section of the orchestra throughout  the five-movements, treating each, as the composer noted, “in a soloistic and virtuosic way.”


Weber: Overture to Oberon

Hindemith: Symphonic Metamorphosis on Themes by Carl Maria von Weber

Bartók: Concerto for Orchestra   


This rare program celebrates the many collaborations that have occurred between the jazz and symphonic realms throughout the previous century. Beginning with Wagner’s Siegried Idyll, an intimate “symphonic birthday greeting” for his wife, the program then shifts to the twentieth-century. In collaboration with the Champaign-Urbana Jazz Festival, alto-saxophonist Clark Gibson performs selections from Charlie Parker’s quintessential recording Bird with Strings, featuring lush orchestrations from the American Songbook. The program continues with Harris’ American Symphony, an incomplete work commissioned for Tommy Dorsey and reconstructed by Sinfonia’s principal trombonist, James Pugh. Next, Sinfonia presents Powell’s Red, White, and Black Blues, which the composer describes as “not blues in the traditional sense” but inspired by W.C. Handy’s suggestion that “the blues came from the man farthest down.” Principal clarinetist J. David Harris is then featured in two compositions originally commissioned for the iconic jazz clarinetist and bandleader, Woody Herman. First, in Stravinsky’s Ebony Concerto, a jazz-influenced Concerto Grosso and, finally, concluding the program in Bernstein’s rousing Prelude, Fugue and Riffs.


Wagner: Siegfried Idyll

Parker: Bird with Strings

Stravinsky: Ebony Concerto

Harris: American Symphony (1938)

Powell: Red, White, and Black Blues

Bernstein: Prelude, Fugue and Riffs


Sinfonia da Camera presents an evening of evocative musical imagery inspired by English painters, poets, and playwrights. A depiction of Thomas Rowlandson’s painting of the same name, William Walton’s Portsmouth Point Overture portrays the seaside bustle of the busy port town in southern England as ships prepare for departure. The title of Frank Bridge’s There is a Willow Grows Aslant a Brook is drawn from Shakespeare’s Hamlet in which Queen Gertrude describes the tragic circumstances in which the drowned Ophelia was discovered. Sinfonia then welcomes Maestro Ian Hobson to the piano, and composer Richard Prior to the podium to perform the world premiere of Prior’s Piano Concerto No. 2. Prior describes his composition as “champion[ing] both the piano and orchestra in often equal roles as the vibrant cinematic drama unfolds.” Finally, as part of a continuing collaboration with Lyric Theatre @ Illinois and in celebration of Valentine’s Day, the evening concludes with a lightly-staged production of Gilbert and Sullivan’s Trial by Jury. A comic opera depicting a “breach of marriage” trial, this farcical production ultimately concludes in an unexpected new marriage and “joy unbounded!”


Walton: Portsmouth Point Overture

Bridge: There is a Willow Grows Aslant a Brook

Prior: Piano Concerto No. 2 (World Premiere)

Gilbert and Sullivan: Trial by Jury


Sinfonia da Camera celebrates the 251stanniversary of Beethoven’s birth with a program of beautifully evocative and timeless pieces that continue the orchestra’s ongoing Beethoven cycle. Noting, “No one can love the country as much as I do,” Beethoven illustrates his “recollections of country life” in Symphony No. 6,“Pastoral.”In the dramatic Leonore Overture No. 3from his opera Fidelio, Beethoven musically depicts the darkness of a prison cell, the hope of reprieve ,and, ultimately, the joy of freedom. Finally, Maestro Ian Hobson takes the stage as both conductor and pianist for Beethoven’s elegant Piano Concerto No. 3 in C Minor. Heavily inspired by Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 24, the piece was composed during a transitional period in Beethoven’s career, as he began to stretch the boundaries of classical practice and usher in the Romantic period that was to follow. Join Sinfonia for an evening of immortal music!


Beethoven: Symphony No. 6 in F Major, Op. 68, “Pastoral”

Beethoven: Leonore Overture No. 3

Beethoven: Piano Concerto No. 3 in C Minor, Op. 37


Sinfonia da Camera’s 37th season finale presents an evening of music from two of Russia’s greatest composers. The program begins with Tchaikovsky’s symphonic poem Francesca da Rimini, a passionate musical depiction of the tragic tale of damned lovers from Dante’s Divine Comedy. Sinfonia then welcomes cellist Dmitry Kouzov to perform Tchaikovsky’s elegant concerto for cello and orchestra Variations on a Rococo Theme. Composed immediately following Francesca da Rimini, these classical variations provide a delightful contrast to the intensity of his preceding work. Finally, the evening concludes with Shostakovich’s critically provocative Symphony No. 9. Originally intended to be a majestic celebration commemorating the Soviet victory over Germany in World War II, the completed work differed significantly in scope and character.  As the composer noted, “if the Seventh and the Eighth symphonies bore a tragic-heroic character, then in the Ninth a … bright mood predominates."


Tchaikovsky: Francesca da Rimini, Op. 32

Tchaikovsky: Variations on a Rococo Theme, Op. 33

Shostakovich: Symphony No. 9

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