Bears, tigers, and gibbons: Minnesota Orchestra young people’s concert visits the zoo

Posted on: February 11, 2021

“A TV crew surrounding her, conductor Sarah Hicks leaned toward the glass, trying to catch sight of her co-stars: three Alaskan brown bears,” writes Jenna Ross in Monday’s (2/8) Star Tribune (Minneapolis). “Normally, you can find Hicks onstage at Orchestra Hall, leading dozens of string, brass and woodwind players. But on this January morning, she was at the Minnesota Zoo, working with bears, tigers and gibbons. From a safe distance, of course…. The taped segments will be woven into a live Minnesota Orchestra Young People’s Concert being broadcast at 3 p.m. Friday on Twin Cities Public Television (TPT) and streaming online. The one-hour program uses animals to connect to music and vice versa…. The orchestra has held young people’s concerts for more than a century…. But this is the first that’s been televised. ‘I think it’s a silver lining of COVID that organizations, having to pivot, are reconsidering what they’re doing and how they’re doing it,’ said Hicks, principal conductor of Live at Orchestra Hall…. The three bears … with their distinct personalities, pair well with the final movement of Maurice Ravel’s ‘Le Tombeau de Couperin.’ Kids will hear selections from composers Coleridge-Taylor Perkinson, Antonio Vivaldi and Grace Williams, too.”