This listing is for The Chicago Symphony Orchestra Hardcover 1974 by Robert Lightfoot III, Thomas Willis.
Hardcover: 127 pages
Publisher: Rand McNally; 1st Edition, 1st Printing edition (1974)
Mylar clear cover over dustjacket. Overall Very Good condition.
The Chicago Symphony Orchestra Hardcover – 1974 by Robert Lightfoot III (Photographer), Thomas Willis (Author)
The Chicago Symphony Orchestra was founded by Theodore Thomas in 1891. The ensemble makes its home at Orchestra Hall in Chicago and plays a summer season at the Ravinia Festival. The music director is Riccardo Muti, who began his tenure in 2010. The CSO is one of five American orchestras commonly referred to as the "Big Five".
In 1890, Charles Norman Fay, a Chicago businessman, invited Theodore Thomas to establish an orchestra in Chicago. Under the name "Chicago Orchestra," the orchestra played its first concert October 16, 1891 at the Auditorium Theater. It is one of the oldest orchestras in the United States, along with the New York Philharmonic, the Boston Symphony Orchestra and the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra.
Orchestra Hall, now a component of the Symphony Center complex, was designed by Chicago architect Daniel H. Burnham and completed in 1904. Maestro Thomas served as music director for thirteen years until his death shortly after the orchestra's newly built residence was dedicated December 14, 1904. The orchestra was renamed "Theodore Thomas Orchestra" in 1905 and today, Orchestra Hall still has "Theodore Thomas Orchestra Hall" inscribed in its façade.
In 1905, Frederick Stock became music director, a post he held until his death in 1942. The orchestra was renamed the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in 1913. Subsequent music directors have included Désiré Defauw, Artur Rodzinski, Rafael Kubelík, Fritz Reiner, Jean Martinon, Georg Solti, and Daniel Barenboim. On May 5, 2008, the CSO Association's president Deborah Rutter announced that the orchestra had named Riccardo Muti as its 10th music director, starting with the 2010–2011 season, for an initial contract of 5 years. His contract has been renewed for another five years, through the 2020 season.
The orchestra has also hosted many distinguished guest conductors, including Thomas Beecham, Leonard Bernstein, Aaron Copland, Edward Elgar, Morton Gould, Paul Hindemith, Erich Kunzel, Erich Leinsdorf, Charles Munch, Eugene Ormandy, André Previn, Sergei Prokofiev, Sergei Rachmaninoff, Maurice Ravel, Arnold Schoenberg, Leonard Slatkin, Leopold Stokowski, Richard Strauss, George Szell, Klaus Tennstedt, Michael Tilson Thomas, Bruno Walter, and John Williams. Many of these guests have also recorded with the orchestra. Carlos Kleiber made his only symphonic guest appearances in America with the CSO in October 1978 and June 1983. The three principal guest conductors of the orchestra have been Carlo Maria Giulini, Claudio Abbado, and Pierre Boulez.
The CSO holds an annual fundraiser, originally known as the Chicago Symphony Marathon, more recently as "Radiothon" and "Symphonython," in conjunction with Chicago radio station WFMT. As part of the event, from 1986 through 2008, the orchestra released tracks from their broadcast archives on double LP/CD collections, as well as two larger sets of broadcasts and rarities (CSO: The First 100 Years, 12 CDs, 1991; CSO in the 20th Century: Collector's Choice, 10 CDs, 2000). On March 10, 2019, CSO musicians went on strike, claiming that management wanted to cut their pension benefits in addition to reducing overall salary. The players picketed outside of Orchestra Hall for 12 hours the next day, stating that they would continue to do so daily until "a contract that is fair to the musicians is reached". On March 12, it was announced that all concerts at Symphony Center through March 16 were cancelled. On March 22, the musicians announced that they would hold a series of free concerts.
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