Chicago Symphony’s Muti steeped in tradition, but a man of the here and now

Posted on: September 14, 2010

“Posters and mailings. Television and radio ads. Banners and telephone campaigns,” writes Andrew Patner in Sunday’s (9/12) Chicago Sun-Times. “And soon, at least one lighted downtown skyscraper. In case you’ve missed it, Riccardo Muti is coming to Chicago. Much of the classical music world faces various crises and several major symphony orchestras are turning to new generations of conductors or beating the drums for American accents on the podium as a means of attracting and retaining audiences. But the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, rarely an institution to be moved by the trends of others, is putting its institutional and fiscal strength and its strong artistic heritage behind one of the last busily active European conductors with deep roots in the 20th century heyday of the great orchestra and opera leaders: Riccardo Muti. … Muti, 69, as knowledgeable and experienced as he is in the music and traditions of his predecessors, though, is not a man who lives in the past. … When Muti and an orchestra are connecting, there’s an electricity and a spontaneity that one rarely sees or feels in the concert hall.”

Posted September 14, 2010