Summermusik announces ’23 season

The Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra has announced its 2023 Summermusik festival season, with tickets going on sale beginning April 1.

From Bach to rock and America to Cuba, this year’s Summermusik programming, the ninth season, is said to be the most diverse to date. The CCO is an independent ensemble of 32 professional musicians that will mark its 50th anniversary in 2024 and is widely recognized as one of the leading performing arts organizations in the region.

“There is truly something for everyone, and we have created the most fun and interactive orchestral concert experience in Greater Cincinnati,” said Evan Gidley, executive director.

Evan Gidley

“Summermusik is a festival that aims to excite, educate, and delight – and to create moments to remember,” said Music Director Eckart Preu, who recently signed a new 4-year contract to remain with the CCO through 2026. 

This year’s festival will feature internationally known guest artists including 10-time Grammy Award winner Arturo Sandoval (trumpet), Mimi Stillman (flute), Cincinnati’s own Awadagin Pratt (piano), and Tessa Lark (violin) of Richmond, Ky.

The orchestra is also partnering with several local arts organizations, including the Children’s Theatre of Cincinnati, Revolution Dance Theatre, Cincinnati Contemporary Jazz Orchestra and Collegium Cincinnati.

Summermusik will again offer three different concert experiences, including full chamber orchestra performances at the School for Creative and Performing Arts and Christ Church Cathedral, A Little Afternoon Musik Sunday matinee concerts at local churches and schools, and Chamber Crawl concerts at popular bars, restaurants, and non-traditional concert venues around Greater Cincinnati, including Go Bananas Comedy Club and Urban Artifact.

For the first time, the CCO will offer free tickets for children under age 13 for selected Mainstage and A Little Afternoon Musik concerts. Tiered ticketing prices also have been added for Mainstage programs, lowering the entry price to just $30 for adults and $10 for students. 

Single tickets go on sale May 1.

The season begins Aug. 5 and continues for three full weeks until Aug. 26.

Eckart Preu, Summermusik music director
Eckart Preu, CCO Summermusik music director

Selected concerts…

Beethoven Reconstructed

  • Saturday, Aug. 5, 7:30 p.m. SCPA Corbett Theater
  • Eckart Preu, conductor; Awadagin Pratt, piano; The Children’s Theatre of Cincinnati 

Beethoven wrote, and rejected, many sketches before completing a symphony. By virtue of these notes, we can get a glimpse into the composer’s mind as it moves through the mysterious creative process of composing, and can make an attempt at what might have come next.

The Bachs: A Musical Dynasty

  • Saturday, Aug. 12, 7:30 p.m. Christ Church Cathedral
  • Eckart Preu, conductor; Mimi Stillman, flute; Collegium Cincinnati, Matthew Phelps, artistic director

A deep dive into the genealogy and genetics of the Bach family, exploring the question: How much of a composer’s greatness is gained through training vs. how much is in the genes? 

A Night in Havana

  • Saturday, Aug. 19, 7:30 p.m. SCPA Corbett Theater
  • Eckart Preu, conductor; Arturo Sandoval, trumpet

Cuba’s rich, colorful musical traditions evolved out of the island’s mixture of indigenous peoples, Spanish settlers, and African slaves. 

Fiddlin’ Folk

  • Friday, Aug. 25, Two shows: 6:45 and 8:30 p.m. The Barn, Mariemont
  • Eckart Preu, performance curator; Tessa Lark, violin

Traditional rags, jigs, folksongs, and other dances from Norway, Denmark, and the United States.

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