For Highland Park High School Marching Band director Josh Chodoroff and members of the marching band, their participation in Ravinia’s encore performance of Leonard Bernstein’s Mass on Saturday, July 20, has to be the very best “This one time, at band camp” story.Read More
The annual Gala Benefit Evening hosted by Ravinia’s Women’s Board to support the festival and its Reach Teach Play education programs grossed more than $1.1 million, making it one of the most successful in the 53-year history of the event. Chicago’s own Oscar- and Grammy-winning Jennifer Hudson made her Chicago Symphony Orchestra debut, headlining the only concert fundraiser Ravinia puts on for itself. George Hanson, who had served as an assistant to Leonard Bernstein, conducted the CSO for the July 14 concert. Nearly 800 guests attended the black-tie-optional gala, which proceeded with cocktails on Ravinia’s famous Lawn after the concert.Read More
No doubt Bernstein would have beamed upon the accomplishments of the 16-year-old cello virtuoso Ifetayo Ali-Landing, who will perform his Meditation No. 3 from Three Meditations from ‘Mass’ at Ravinia this summer with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra on July 27—her debut with our nation’s top ensemble. At an age when most people her age are concerned with acne or just making it through gym class alive, Ms. Ali-Landing has already amassed a slew of important awards and concert appearances.Read More
Yankovic is a hit-after-hit-after-hit wonder who has built a devoted, multigenerational fan base one song parody at a time. It is a testament to his longevity that he has outlasted many of the musicians he has spoofed. Earlier this year, he won his fifth Grammy (Boxed or Special Limited Edition Package) for his aptly titled 15-disc career retrospective Squeeze Box, which came in a package designed like his accordion. His last three albums, Straight Out of Lynwood, Alpocalypse, and Mandatory Fun, ranked in the top 10 on the Billboard charts, with Mandatory achieving number-one status.Read More
While music is, of course, a central part of his life, much less known is that he is an avid fan of fine art, especially European painting. Although has acquired some small paintings, sculptures, and original prints, he considers himself more an admirer than a collector. He makes a point of visiting the art museums in the dozens of cities he visits each year as part of his international touring schedule. “It’s a continuing love of mine,” Goode says.Read More
At 61 years old, Grammy Award–winning singer, accomplished composer, and much-loved actor Lyle Lovett finds himself a different man than he once was. He’s breathing deeper and living a tad slower, and he’s content, both on and off the stage.
And he’s never been happier.Read More
A few years ago, the Tony-nominated director Diane Paulus was anticipating a production of Monteverdi’s The Return of Ulysses for an upcoming Chicago Opera Theatre season. Based upon the second half of Homer’s Odyssey, Monteverdi’s opera is concerned with Ulysses’s return from the Trojan wars to his wife, Penelope. Paulus had not settled upon her approach to the piece, but one inspiration coursed through her conversation like a conceptual leitmotif: “Penelope,” she said presciently. “I am very interested in Penelope.”Read More
Slatkin stepped down as music director of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra in 2018, marking the end of a 39-year run as a music director in the United States—first in Saint Louis, then the National Symphony in Washington, DC, then Detroit, which has named him its Music Director Laureate. (He has also been Conductor Laureate of the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra since the 1996 conclusion of his tenure.) His calendar has far more open weeks now, but he will return to Ravinia to conduct the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in a program of Rachmaninoff and Rimsky-Korsakov on August 7.Read More
Movie music has been part of symphonic pops concerts at least since the 1940s, but Henry Mancini, the famed composer of scores for such movies as The Pink Panther and Breakfast at Tiffany’s, took things even further beginning around the 1960s, when he led more than 50 performances of his most popular themes each year across the United States and beyond. But David Newman, who returns to conduct On the Waterfront after leading West Side Story, points to John Williams as the biggest catalyst in changing attitudes in the classical world about film music.Read More
Some opera singers might dabble in jazz or record a one-off Broadway album, but Brazilian baritone Paulo Szot has made musical variety the hallmark of his career. He has performed with Liza Minnelli and Marvin Hamlisch and appeared in prestigious New York cabaret rooms like the Café Carlyle and 54 Below. Most notably, he won a 2008 Tony Award for his portrayal of Emile de Becque in a revival of South Pacific—his Broadway debut—and won another major award later in London for the same role. “I was never a closed-genre person,” Szot says. “I was always open to everything.”Read More
Yankovic quickly became one of the biggest-selling comedy recording artists in history. Since his self-titled debut release, the singer has released 13 more studio albums, several of which have gone platinum, and has won five Grammy Awards, accepting the latest earlier this year for Squeeze Box, an anthology bringing together his original songs and signature parodies of such hits as “Eye of the Tiger” by Survivor, “Happy” by Pharrell Williams, “Smells Like Teen Spirit” by Nirvana, “Piano Man” by Billy Joel, and more.
Sushi is now available at the Ravinia Market, our grab-and-go marketplace on the main floor of the Dining Pavilion. Grab some classic maki rolls and poke bowls for the picnic you packed or dine out under the umbrellas on our Fifth Third Bank Market Terrace. The menu is prepared by an itamae—a professional sushi chef—for all to see! Our chefs come from Kamehachi sushi, a favorite in both Northbrook and Chicago.
Securing its reputation as the definitive production of Leonard Bernstein’s massive musical Mass, Ravinia’s July 20 command encore presentation, with 200 artists on stage, will be taped for a national television special to air in 2020. The television production team is led by Emmy and Peabody Award-winning executive producer Samuel J. Paul (Live from the Met, The Kennedy Center Presents, American Style), producer Bernhard Fleischer, and director Michael Beyer. Broadcast details will be forthcoming.Read More
“On the Waterfront” received 12 Academy Award nominations, including one for its score; it won eight Oscars, including best picture, director, screenplay, cinematography, and of course, actor. Bernstein lost to Hollywood veteran Dimitri Tiomkin for “The High and the Mighty” — a plane-in-peril drama with a popular soundtrack (John Wayne, as the movie’s hero, whistles the title theme throughout the film). With its tortured history, however, “On the Waterfront” was a surprising Oscar winner, and remains a polarizing film in some quarters to this day.Read More
The BMO Club is now open to everyone at Ravinia Festival this season! The club accommodates more than 170 guests on the rooftop of Ravinia’s new Experience Center building. In addition to bar seating, there is a drink rail around the perimeter of the new space, which is connected by an observation bridge to Ravinia’s Dining Pavilion–a perfect space overlooking the Ravinia lawn!Read More
To paraphrase Leonard Bernstein, picnicking at Ravinia offers the best of all possible worlds: you get to listen to world-class music while dining under the stars. Frequent concert goers are no stranger to the Ravinia picnic experience, but new comers may need some helpful assistance in preparing a night on the lawn. We recently spoke to some Ravinia picnickers and asked them what they were packing and what picnic tips they had for Ravinia-goers.Read More
At the end of the concert, I raced up the aisle to get a better look at the maestro, but as I got near the stage, Bernstein came back out to lead an encore, so I sat down on the ground and had my first up-close experience of an orchestra as Bernstein pulled out all the stops for a heart-pumping rendition of “The Stars and Stripes Forever.” Sousa, not Stravinsky, would be my true baptism by live symphonic music.Read More
An argument can be made that today’s leading pianists lead more complete careers. They still perform abundant solo recitals and orchestral concertos like their forbears, but many also place a regular emphasis on collaborative chamber music. As evidence, look no further than four of the pianists featured this year at Ravinia—Daniil Trifonov, Jean-Yves Thibaudet, Jon Kimura Parker, and Marta Aznavoorian.Read More
In just the years since her Ravinia debut in 2011—“One of my favorite experiences performing onstage,” she said—she became a coach/mentor on the American and British incarnations of The Voice and has landed two hotly anticipated projects, an Aretha Franklin biopic (“I’m literally sitting at the piano right now practicing for the role,” she quipped) and the screen adaptation of Cats in which she will portray Grizabella. The film is scheduled for release this December.Read More
What do neo-soul innovator D’Angelo, “Lady Marmalade” Patti LaBelle, guitar god John Mayer, “Shout” singer Ronald Isley, and gospel great Smokie Norful all have in common? Well, outside of being exceptional artists in their respective fields, they’ve all had the fingerprints of star session guitarist Isaiah Sharkey on their recent tours or albums (including a multiple Grammy winner) in the midst his steady ascent as an esteemed solo artist.Read More