Four Classical Musical Highlights This Week

The Oberlin Baroque Performance Institute (now in its 44th year) gets underway this week, and while the big faculty concert is scheduled for the second weekend of the festival, “les souls d’amour,” a show that won high praise as a fringe event at the recent Boston Early Music Festival will be repeated at Oberlin’s Slow Train Café (55 E. College Street) on Wednesday, June 24 at 9:30 pm. “Lesser-known gems of the Renaissance and Baroque” showcases soprano Molly Netter, violinist Alana Youssefian, viola da gambist David Ellis, hurdy-gurdy player and vocalist Andrew Padgett and harpsichordist Jacob Street, “in a raucous cabaret style featuring songs of love and liquor from five European countries. Free.

On Thursday, June 25 at 2:00 pm in Freedlander Theatre at the College of Wooster, Ohio Light Opera opens “One Touch of Venus,” a show created through the unlikely collaboration of poet Odgen Nash, humorist S.J. Perelman and composer Kurt Weill. You know the story: a statue comes to life — but falls in love not with its owner but with a barber from Ozone Heights. Billed as “the closest that Weill ever came to pure musical comedy,” the show marks the first time in the 21st century that OLO has produced a title by the well-known German-American composer. More performances follow through August 8. Tickets here.

ChamberFest Cleveland shifts into overdrive this week, with four performances featuring top chamber musicians from around the country (the grand finale comes along next week). Here are some highlights: “Music for a Summer Evening” on Thursday, June 25 at 8 pm in CIM’s Mixon Hall features George Crumb’s dazzling piece of the same name for two amplified pianos and two percussionists. “здоровье (To Your Health) on Friday, June 26 at 8:00 pm in Harkness Chapel at CWRU brings a small feast of Russian music to the ChamberFest table. “Something Borrowed, Something Blue” on Saturday, June 27 at 8:00 pm in Mixon Hall offers a bit of everything from Nathan Farrington’s performance of an Edgar Meyer piece for solo bass to Gershwin’s “American in Paris” for two pianos and the Cohen trio (Franklin on clarinet, Diana on violin, and Alexander on timpani) playing Dana Wilson’s “A Thousand Whirling Dreams.” Oh, and the “blue” is Thelonius Monk’s “Round Midnight.” Then on Sunday, June 28 at 3:00 pm in Dunham Tavern Barn, Anna Polonsky and Orion Weiss will join four hands on one piano for “Crossing Hands,” with music by Debussy, Schumann, Ravel and Dvorak. Tickets for all these performances are available online.

On Sunday, June 28 at 3:00 pm, The Hungarian Cultural Garden invites you to an al fresco performance by violinist Emma Shook, violist Laura Shuster, cellist Diane Mather, cimbalomist Alexander Fedoriouk, accordionist Steven Hegedeos and bassist Derek Zadinsky, where you can enjoy string trios by Joseph Haydn and Erno von Dohnányi (uncle of the former Cleveland Orchestra music director) plus Hungarian Folk Music. The address is 1070 East Boulevard in Rockefeller Park, and it’s free.
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