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Wednesday, February 17, 2010

2/18-20: Cleveland Orchestra

Posted By on Wed, Feb 17, 2010 at 11:47 AM

It’s all Wagner and — except for the “Wesendonck Songs” featuring soloist Measha Brueggergosman — it’s all overtures and preludes to operas on the Cleveland Orchestra’s program this weekend. But Wagner’s monumental Ring Cycle is nowhere in sight. Franz Welser-Möst will lead performances of Lohengrin’s Act I and Act III preludes, the overture to Rienzi, Tristan and Isolde’s prelude and the prelude to Die Meistersinger. Performances are at 8 p.m. tonight and Saturday. The orchestra does it again at 7 tomorrow night without Brueggergosman and the “Wesendonck Songs.” The main attraction is Simon Shaheen, who was born in Galilee and plays the oud, an 11-stringed instrument similar to the lute, but without frets. He and his group Qantara fused Middle Eastern traditions with jazz and other western styles on their 2001 album Blue Flame. Shaheen’s post-concert performance tomorrow should feel like a house party: Fridays at Seven curator and percussionist extraordinaire Jamey Haddad, along with Cleveland Institute of Music president and former Juilliard Quartet violinist Joel Smirnoff, will serve as Shaheen’s backing band. All three performances take place at Severance Hall (11001 Euclid Ave., 216.231.1111). Tickets: $31-$126. — Michael Gill

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