Chicago Shakespeare Theater
and Chicago Chamber Musicians present
An Interactive Family Concert at
Chicago Shakespeare Theater on Navy Pier
Saturday, January 19 and Sunday, January 20, 2008
Chicago—January 19, 2008—Chicago Shakespeare Theater (CST) announces its sixth annual collaboration with The Chicago Chamber Musicians (CCM) on a program for young audiences and their families. Classical Idol!, an interactive concert that features three, instrumentally distinct chamber music ensembles—each competing for audience applause—gives children ages four and up the opportunity to discover up close the excitement of live performance. The hour-long interactive concerts are today and Sunday, January 20, 2008 at 10:00 and 11:30 a.m. at Chicago Shakespeare Theater on Navy Pier. At 11:00 a.m. on both days, performers will be available for autographs and pictures in the Theater's lobby, while young musicians demonstrate and answer questions about the featured instruments.
Classical Idol! is designed to be an entertaining introduction for young audiences to the "personalities" of different classical instrument families. Bill Larkin, who originated the role of Vice Principal Douglas Panch in Chicago's premiere of The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, hosts the Classical Idol! contest.
The three featured ensembles include: "The Stylish Strings"—CCM ensemble artists and Family Concert favorites Jasmine Lin, violin; Rami Solomonow, viola; Clancy Newman, cello, and a yet to be determined violinist; "The Brilliant Brass Quintet," including two trumpets, a horn, trombone and tuba, performed by CINCO—currently in residence with Jane Addams Hull House and the first ensemble chosen to participate in CCM's Professional Development Program; and "The Whimsical Wind Quintet," including a flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon and horn, performed by Quintet Attacca—the 2002 Grand Prize-winner of the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition and current ensemble-in-residence of CCM's two-year Professional Development Program. The strings will perform music from Czechoslovakia (Dvorak) and France (Debussy), the brass will perform music from Italy (Gabrieli) and Poland (Lutoslawski) and the woodwinds will play works from Mexico (Marquez) and Argentina (Piazzolla). CCM ensemble artist and Chicago Symphony Orchestra Bassoonist Dennis Michel will also appear as a befuddled bassoon unsure to which family he belongs.
Chicago Shakespeare Theater was founded in 1986 on the rooftop of a neighborhood pub, where Artistic Director Barbara Gaines directed a company of Chicago actors in William Shakespeare's Henry V. The ad hoc enterprise quickly evolved from an itinerant theater company to a regular feature in the Chicago theater scene and since 1999 has resided on Navy Pier. At the heart of the company are the dramatic works of William Shakespeare. In coupling the talents of its producing team with a national roster of distinguished actors, CST aims to give theatergoers the means to explore the classics, while still presenting a dynamic lineup of commissioned works, international productions, family plays and new musicals. Today, Chicago Shakespeare Theater houses the 500-seat Courtyard Theater (inspired by the Royal Shakespeare Company's Swan Theatre), a 200-seat, flexible black box theater, the Teacher Resource Center, and lobbies with panoramic views of the Chicago skyline and Lake Michigan. CST's Family Series presents a convergence of abridged Shakespeare productions, timeless fables and fairy tales, interactive music concerts and musical theater created with families in mind. For the tens of thousands of families who visit Navy Pier every year, Chicago Shakespeare Theater can offer a significant experience, introducing the classics and the performing arts to young people. Family theater is a shared experience where children engage actively and viscerally in story-making.
Founded in 1986, the Grammy-nominated Chicago Chamber Musicians is committed to building an internationally recognized chamber music institution in Chicago through its critically and popularly acclaimed subscription series; an award-winning annual series of contemporary chamber music; a touring program that has taken artists to Europe, Japan, and across the U.S.; the annual Family Concerts; and a remarkable set of community service programs. In Spring 2007, CCM launched a nationally syndicated radio series. CCM has commissioned 13 works, and has received two ASCAP-Chamber Music America Awards for Adventurous Programming. Among CCM's numerous awards are the 2006 ABBY Award for Arts Management Excellence and the 2007 Chamber Ensemble of the Year Award from the Illinois Council of Orchestras. CCM is underwritten in part by the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency; and the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs. The Chicago Community Trust and Bentley Forbes are the lead supporters of CCM's 2007-2008 season and Target is the presenting sponsor of the Family Concerts.
Classical Idol! is recommended for children age four and up. Performances are Saturday, January 19 and Sunday, January 20, 2008 at 10:00 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. Tickets are $18 for adults and $15 for students (ages 12 and younger). For further information and to purchase tickets, call the Chicago Shakespeare Theater Box Office at 312.595.5600, or visit the Theater"s website at www.chicagoshakes.com.
American Airlines is the official airline of Chicago Shakespeare Theater.
ComEd is the official lighting design sponsor of Chicago Shakespeare Theater.
Mainstage artistic productions in the Courtyard Theater are supported, in part, through a generous leadership grant from the McCormick Tribune Foundation.