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Neighbors of DuPage

Music and Mother Nature

Jul 03, 2015 11:40AM ● By Ron Searl

So when does music and Mother Nature meet?  When the world renowned Chicago Symphony Orchestra (CSO) returned for its third season of three concert events at the Morton Arboretum in Lisle Illinois.   This partnership has been able to bring classical sounds to the western suburbs in a sensational setting unmatched anywhere else around Chicago.  Only Ravinia Festival in Highland Park (north suburbs) rivals the setting.  But Ravinia, the oldest outdoor music festival in the United States, was created as a music venue.   The Morton Arboretum offers a natural setting that Ravinia cannot rival in terms of beauty, landscape and performance intimacy.

This year's triple play included Guest Conductor Richard Kaufman leading the CSO, on June 25th, in Hollywood Heroes and Superheroes

Guest Conductor Kaufman has an extensive resume supervising music for film and television productions.  This year was his tenth year with the CSO Movie series.  Kaufman is the principal pops conductor for the Pacific Symphony

Overcoming the threat of rain on June 25th, attendees were treated to a wonderful array of movie themes and music.  It was not only magnificent sounding in nature's amphitheater, but conjured fond memories for many avid movie goers.  The music program included theme songs from:

·         The Big Country (1958);

·         High Noon (1952);

·         Batman (1989);

·         To Kill a Mockingbird (1962);

·         Young Sherlock Holmes (1985);

·         Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (1997);

·         Star Wars (1977);

·         The Tuskegee Airmen (1995):

·         Midway (1976);

·         Star Trek (1966-1969);

·         Airplane! (1980); and

·         Spider-Man (2002)

The evening was completed with a spirited James Bond theme encore. 

On June 26th and 27th Guest Conductor James Feddeck was to lead the CSO in very different performances.  The June 26th event unfortunately succumbed to Mother Nature as rain storms canceled what promised to be an all-Russian program of Stravinsky's Circus Polka and Suite for The Firebird, and Rachmaninov's Symphony No. 2.  Tickets for this canceled performance were honored on June 27th or could be used for a future CSO concert at the Symphony Center.

The June 27th performance included the overture to Glinka's Ruslan and Ludmila, Haydn's Trumpet Concerto and Berlioz's Symphonie fantastique.


For anyone interested in future CSO movie themed performances the CSO is offering a 3-Concert Subscription on Fridays in October 2015, March 2016 and May 2016 at the Symphony Center in Chicago.   See