Ravinia concert schedule released – partial listing

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Ravinia has announced its complete lineup for 2010 featuring 117 events and more new faces than ever before. BUY TICKETS NOW by supporting* the not-for-profit festival. Public sales begins April 22 exclusively at www.ravinia.org

Here’s a partial listing of (possible) concerts/performances that theatre-goers might be interested in.  Entire schedule here.


JUNE Performances

Chicago Children’s Choir

Earth, Wind & Fire

6/10 and 6/11
Concert Dance, Inc./World Premieres

Steve Martin Performing With The Steep Canyon Rangers

Backstreet Boys

Bobby Mcferrin


JULY Performances

A Prairie Home Companion/Garrison Keillor

Cheap Trick/Squeeze

CSO/Gershwin Concerto In F/Copland
Appalachian Spring/Bernstein Symphony No. 2

The Swell Season from the Oscar-Winner Film Once

7/17 and  7/18
Sting / Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra

Peter And Paul Pay Tribute To Mary

The B-52s

CSO/Eschenbach Plays Mozart/Hits From Bernstein’s Candide

The Music Of Abba (Lawn Screen)

CSO/Sondheim Hits/Patti Lupone, Audra Mcdonald, George Hearn, Michael Cerveris/Gala Concert


AUGUST Performances


Broadway Star Kelli O’Hara, One-Woman Show

CSO/Così Fan Tutte, Matinee

CSO/The Marriage Of Figaro, Matinee

CSO/Annie Get Your Gun

8/14 – 8/15  (3 separate shows)
Patti Lupone/Brian Stokes Mitchell

Crosby, Stills & Nash

Swingin Balladeer Tony Andriacchi

Carrie Underwood

An Evening With The Beach Boys

Labor Day Spectacular/"1812" with Cannons

Hershey Felder In Maestro: The Art And Music Of Leonard Bernstein

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REVIEW: Tosca (Lyric Opera)

Puccini’s Violent Love Story Masterpiece


Lyric Opera Presents


By Giacomo Puccini
Libretto by Giuseppe Giacosa and Luigi Illica
Conducted by Stephen Lord
Stage directed by Paula Suozzi
Thru January 29th (ticket info)

By Katy Walsh

tosca11Torture, murder, execution, suicide, despite the violent nature of this warhorse opera, Tosca contributes some of the most familiar romantic opera melodies to the mainstream. The Lyric Opera presents Tosca by Giacomo Puccini. Performed in Italian with projected English supertitles (by Francis Rizzo), Tosca is based on Victorien Sardou’s play La Tosca. Floria Tosca is a celebrated opera singer in Rome. Her lover, Mario Cavaradossi, aids an escaped political prisoner and is arrested. The villainous chief of police, Scarpia, coerces Tosca into saving Cavaradossi with promises of sexual favors. Betrayal ensues. No one gets what they want… except the audience. From the first aria of Recondita armonia to the duet Amaro sol per te, the memorable harmonies plunge the audience into an all consuming passionate love story, best experienced as an opera.

The Lyric opened its 2009/2010 season with this crowd pleaser and remounted it this month for a three week winter escape. The principals have changed for this mini-run but the sets and the huge supporting cast are the same. Act I in the Church of Sant’ Andrea della Valle ends with a visual explosion. The house of worship is already decked out with ornate details befitting the 1800’s (set designer Renzo Mongiardino). Cue the Chicago Children’s Choir, several clergy and church-goers in various liturgical vestments and Sunday best finery (costumes by Marcel Escoffier), the 100+ people on stage are merely a spectacular backdrop for Scarpia’s vow to destroy Cavaradossi and have Tosca. It’s these elaborate dramatic moments that elicit the inaudible oohs and aahs usually reserved for fireworks.

tosca16 tosca19 tosca18

Even without the stimulation of extensive sets and costumes, Tosca is still one of Puccini’s masterpieces, sung to perfection by the newest principals. Violeta Urmana (Tosca) sings magnificently through a range of emotions; irrational, jealousy, demanding, enraged, passionate, and desperate. Marco Berti (Cavaradossi) is the lover of beautiful things with unfortunate timing that leads to trouble with his diva girlfriend, an escaped prisoner, and evil police chief. Lucio Gallo is the creepy Baron Scarpia. He delivers wicked lyrics (translated) like “I lust, and then I pursue the one I desire, I satisfy myself, and throw her away” and “How you despise me but that is just how I want you.” Certainly, every woman in the audience wants to stab this guy – but, of course, not until after the final note of Lyric’s exquisite Tosca is heard.

Rating: ★★★½

SPOILER ALERT: Tosca committing suicide is questionable. The dramatic moment is lost behind a prison wall as if she is just escaping. But maybe that’s the Lyric Opera twist, Tosca finally gets a happy ending. Tosca escapes to sing again!

Note: All pictures by Dan Rest


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