2017 Season

Violinist Vadim Gluzman plays for the Festival's Opening Night

Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto

Carlos Kalmar and the Grant Park Orchestra open the Festival's 2017 season with one of the most enduring violin concertos of all time featuring Vadim Gluzman. The evening gets started with Alfvén's Festival Overture and a medley of the best-known music from Gershwin's Porgy and Bess.

Who

Grant Park Orchestra

Carlos Kalmar, Conductor

Vadim Gluzman, Violin

What

Alfvén: Festival Overture

Tchaikovsky: Violin Concerto

Gershwin: Porgy and Bess: A Symphonic Picture


Download Program Notes (PDF)


Soprano Sara Jakubiak performs in Vaughan Williams' A Sea Symphony

A Sea Symphony

The Grant Park Chorus join the Orchestra for Vaughan Williams' monumental A Sea Symphony, based on Walt Whitman's celebrated poetry collection, Leaves of Grass. Sweeping and bold, it is paired with orchestral works from Benjamin Britten's beautiful and terrifying opera, Peter Grimes.

Soprano Susanna Phillips makes her Festival debut

Beethoven Symphony No. 4

Join the Orchestra for Beethoven's classic Fourth Symphony, along with American composer Aaron Copland's homage, Eight Poems of Emily Dickinson with soprano Susanna Phillips in her Festival debut. Wagner's orchestral interpretation of the Faust overture opens the program.

Who

Grant Park Orchestra

Carlos Kalmar, Conductor

Susanna Phillips, Soprano

What

Wagner: A Faust Overture

Copland: Eight Poems of Emily Dickinson

Beethoven: Symphony No. 4


American Pianist Conrad Tao performs Khachaturian's Piano Concerto

Stravinsky Firebird

The season heats up with Khachaturian's festive Armenian Piano Concerto with American pianist Conrad Tao, along with Stravinsky's heroic masterpiece, The Firebird. The evening begins with the Midwest premiere of David Schiff's Infernal, a jazzy tribute to Stravinsky's Firebird.

Miguel Harth-Bedoya will conduct the Festival premiere of Missa Latina

Missa Latina

Hear the Latin Mass transformed as Miguel Harth-Bedoya conducts the Festival premiere of Missa Latina, the large-scale choral work by Puerto Rican-American composer Roberto Sierra that mixes traditional Latin and contemporary concert music with the irresistible dance rhythms of the Caribbean.

The Canadian Brass celebrates Canada's 150th Birthday at the Festival

Canada's 150th Birthday Celebration With the Canadian Brass

Oh Canada! The Canadian Brass join the Grant Park Orchestra for an evening of symphonic suites, blues and the Beatles, all with a Canadian flair, in honor of Canada's sesquicentennial. Lucas Waldin conducts.

Who

Grant Park Orchestra

Lucas Waldin, Guest Conductor

Canadian Brass

Alison Wahl, Vocalist


What

Lavallée (Arr. Gilliland): O Canada

Hétu: Légendes, Opus 76

Mitchell (Arr. Pellett): Big Yellow Taxi

Hemsworth (Arr. Pellett): Log Driver's Waltz

Arr. Faith: Theme from A Summer Place/Moulin Rouge

Campbell/Harron (Arr. Farnon): Excerpt from Symphonic Suite from Anne of Green Gables

Cable: The Banks of Newfoundland

Waller (Arr. Henderson): Fats Waller Suite

Handy (Arr. Henderson): Beale Street Blues

Lennon/McCartney (Arr. Dedrick): Tribute to the Beatles

Traditional/Handel (Arr. Henderson): Saints’ Halleluiah


Download Program Notes (PDF)

Celebrate Independence Day in Millennium Park

Independence Day Salute

Bring your family and friends and celebrate the Fourth of July under the stars in Millennium Park with an evening of patriotic favorites, including Stars and Stripes Forever, the 1812 Overture and more. An encore performance will be held on Wednesday, July 5 at 6:30 PM at the South Shore Cultural Center, 7059 S. South Shore Drive.

Who

Grant Park Orchestra

Christopher Bell, Conductor

What

An evening of patriotic favorites, including Stars and Stripes Forever, the 1812 Overture and more


Download Program Notes (PDF)

Thomas Wilkins returns to the Festival to conduct the music of John Williams

Star Wars and More: The Music of John Williams

The music from your favorite films is brought to life in an epic evening featuring classics from Academy Award-winning composer John Williams. Enjoy the orchestral soundtrack from Star Wars, Superman, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Raiders of the Lost Ark and more. Thomas Wilkins conducts.

Who

Grant Park Orchestra

Thomas Wilkins, Guest Conductor

What

Superman March from Superman

Main Title from Star Wars

Raiders March from Raiders of the Lost Ark

Theme from Jurassic Park

March from 1941

Theme from Far and Away

The Flight to Neverland from Hook

The Imperial March from Star Wars

Duel of the Fates from Star Wars: Episode I

Yoda’s Theme from The Empire Strikes Back

Viktor’s Tale from The Terminal

Hedwig’s Theme from Harry Potter and The Sorcerer’s Stone

Excerpts from Close Encounters of the Third Kind


Download Program Notes (PDF)

Fawzi Haimor conducts the Grant Park Orchestra

Haydn London Symphony

Conductor Fawzi Haimor leads the Grant Park Orchestra in a tour-de-force program featuring Haydn's final symphony, London, Hindemith's Symphonic Metamorphosis and the Midwest premiere of Syrian-born composer Kareem Roustom's Ramal.

Who

Grant Park Orchestra

Fawzi Haimor, Guest Conductor

What

Roustom: Ramal

Haydn: Symphony No. 104, London

Hindemith: Symphonic Metamorphosis


Download Program Notes (PDF)

The Grant Park Chorus performs for Night Out in the Parks

Rachmaninov Vespers

Christopher Bell and the Grant Park Chorus head out to the neighborhoods with an a cappella concert of Rachmaninov’s Vespers, as part of Mayor Emanuel’s Night Out in the Parks program.

Who

Grant Park Chorus

Christopher Bell, Chorus Director

What

Rachmaninov: Vespers (All Night Vigil)


Guest conductor Simone Young leads the Orchestra

Beethoven Piano Concerto No. 2

The award-winning conductor Simone Young takes the podium, leading the orchestra and guest artist Andrew Tyson in Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 2. The evening opens with the U.S. premiere of Matthew Hindson's Headbanger and closes with Strauss' powerful Symphonia domistica.

Violinist Angelo Xiang Yu performs Saint-Saëns' romantic Violin Concerto

Saint-Saens Violin Concerto

Conductor Brett Mitchell leads the orchestra and rising star Angelo Xiang Yu in Saint-Saëns' romantic Violin Concerto. The evening opens with Kenji Bunch's uplifting Supermaximum and closes with The Red Pony, Aaron Copland's film score adapted from the John Steinbeck 1933 novella.

Who

Grant Park Orchestra

Brett Mitchell, Guest Conductor

Angelo Xiang Yu, Violin

What

Bunch: Supermaximum

Saint-Saëns: Violin Concerto No. 3

Copland: The Red Pony


Download Program Notes (PDF)


Laura Osnes is featured in Festival's summer Broadway concert.

A Broadway Romance

Ted Sperling takes the Grant Park Orchestra and Chorus and the stars of Cinderella on Broadway, Laura Osnes (Bandstand) and Santino Fontana (Frozen), through the ups and downs of romance, with music from Frozen, Cinderella, and classic and contemporary shows including Carousel, Follies, Oklahoma and more.

Who

Grant Park Orchestra And Chorus

Ted Sperling, Guest Conductor

Christopher Bell, Chorus Director

Laura Osnes And Santino Fontana, Vocalists

What

Gershwin: Overture to Girl Crazy

Loesser: Song of a Summer Night from The Most Happy Fella

Bernstein: Something's Coming from West Side Story

Rodgers: Out of My Dreams from Oklahoma!

Bock: Tonight at Eight/Will He Like Me from She Loves Me

Pasek & Paul: First Date/Last Night from Dogfight

Styne: I Met a Girl from Bells Are Ringing

Rodgers: Ten Minutes Ago from Cinderella
If I Loved You from Carousel
You Are Never Away from Allegro

Beck: Love is an Open Door from Frozen

Berlin: Old-Fashioned Wedding from Annie Get Your Gun

Sondheim: Getting Married Today from Company

Brown: Next Ten Minutes from The Last Five Years

Lane: The Begat from Finian's Rainbow

Flaherty: Our Children from Ragtime

Guettel: Dividing Day from The Light in the Piazza

Sondheim: Buddy's Blues and Could I Leave You from Follies

Loewe: How to Handle a Woman from Camelot

Arlen: Come Rain or Come Shine from St. Louis Woman

Bernstein: Make Our Garden Grow from Candide


Download Program Notes (PDF)

Piano virtuoso Stephen Hough returns to the Festival for Brahms' Piano Concerto

Brahms Piano Concerto No. 1

Virtuoso Stephen Hough returns to the Festival with intensity to perform Brahms' turbulent Piano Concerto No. 1. Then journey from Vienna to Budapest as Kodály's Dances of Galánta and Brahms' Hungarian Dances round out the evening.

Who

Grant Park Orchestra

Carlos Kalmar, Conductor

Stephen Hough, Piano

What

Brahms: Piano Concerto No. 1

Kodály: Dances of Galánta

Brahms: Hungarian Dances Nos. 1, 3, 6


Download Program Notes (PDF)


Soprano Colleen Daly joins the Grant Park Chorus and other soloists for Martin's emotional oratorio

Mozart Linz Symphony

Carlos Kalmar conducts one of Mozart's great symphonies, the Linz Symphony. Then, the Grant Park Chorus joins the Orchestra for Frank Martin's emotional and spirited In terra pax, written to mark the end of the Second World War.

Who

Grant Park Orchestra And Chorus

Carlos Kalmar, Conductor

Christopher Bell, Chorus Director

Colleen Daly, Soprano

Lauren Segal, Mezzo-Soprano

David Pomeroy, Tenor

James Westman, Baritone

Daniel Okulitch, Bass

What

Mozart: Symphony No. 36, Linz

Martin: In terra pax


Download Program Notes (PDF)


International guitar sensation Pablo Sáinz Villegas makes his Festival debut

The Spanish Guitar

The Festival pays tribute to the music of Spain with a sizzling program that includes orchestral highlights from one of the most popular operas ever written, Georges Bizet's Carmen. Internationally-renowned guitar virtuoso Pablo Sáinz Villegas makes his debut with Joaquin Rodrigo's Fantasía par un gentilhombre, and the sounds of Arriaga and Turina complete the program.

Who

Grant Park Orchestra

Carlos Kalmar, Conductor

Pablo Sáinz Villegas, Guitar

What

Arriaga: Los esclavos felices: Overture

Bizet: Suite from Carmen

Rodrigo: Fantasía para un gentilhombre

Turina: Danzas fantàsticas

Francois Leleux joins the orchestra indoors at the Harris Theater for Strauss' Oboe Concerto

Debussy La Mer

Join the Grant Park Orchestra indoors at the Harris Theater for Debussy's orchestral masterwork, La mer, along with Strauss' lyrical Oboe Concerto featuring guest artist François Leleux, recognized worldwide as the pre-eminent oboist of his generation.

Who

Grant Park Orchestra

Carlos Kalmar, Conductor

François Leleux, Oboe

What

Hindemith: Concert Music for Strings and Brass

Strauss: Oboe Concerto in D Major

Mendelssohn: Calm Sea and Prosperous Voyage

Debussy: La Mer


Spend an evening with Mariachi Cobre at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion

An Evening With Mariachi Cobre

¡La tradición de la charrería viene a Millennium Park! Mariachi Cobre, one of America's best-known mariachi bands, joins the Orchestra for an evening of traditional Mexican folk music and an appeal that transcends ethnic groups and national borders.

Who

Grant Park Orchestra

Carlos Kalmar, Conductor

What

Mariachi Cobre joins the Grant Park Orchestra for an evening of traditional Mexican folk music.

The Orchestra's Jonathan Boen plays in the world premiere of Kernis' Horn Concerto

Tchaikovsky Manfred Symphony

The Grant Park Orchestra tackles two monumental Russian pieces plus a world premiere by the Pulitzer Prize-winning American composer, Aaron Jay Kernis.

Dutch cellist Harriet Krijgh makes her Festival debut in Haydn's Cello Concerto

Haydn Cello Concerto

Harriet Krijgh, the 25 year old Dutch-born and Vienna-trained cellist, makes her Festival debut with Haydn's rediscovered Concerto in C Major. Rounding out the program are lively and lyrical vignettes from Respighi's The Birds and the Festival premiere of Chadwick's complete Symphonic Sketches.

Who

Grant Park Orchestra

Carlos Kalmar, Conductor

Harriet Krijgh, Cello

What

Respighi: The Birds

Haydn: Cello Concerto in C Major

Chadwick: Symphonic Sketches


Soprano Janai Brugger returns for the final concert of the Festival season

Beethoven Symphony No. 9

The Festival's 83rd season comes to a thrilling close with one of the best-known works in classical music: Beethoven's glorious masterpiece, Symphony No. 9, culminating in the famous movement, "Ode to Joy." The evening opens with Brahms' finest choral work, Schicksalslied.

Who

Grant Park Orchestra And Chorus

Carlos Kalmar, Conductor

Christopher Bell, Chorus Director

Benjamin Rivera, Guest Chorus DIrector

Janai Brugger, Soprano

Allyson McHardy, Mezzo-Soprano

Brendan Tuohy, Tenor

Russell Braun, Bass

What

Brahms: Schicksalslied

Beethoven: Symphony No. 9