Sunday, February 28, 2016

Chicago Sinfonietta Celebrates Percussive Rhythms This Spring In BYOB: Bring Your Own Beat, William Grant Still, Naperville March 12, Chicago March 14, 2016

William Grant Still (1895-1978) is profiled at, which features a comprehensive Works List by Dr. Dominique-Rene de Lerma. Still's Festive Overture will be performed on this program.

Featuring Chicago Symphony Orchestra principal percussionist Cynthia Yeh;
Atlanta Symphony Orchestra’s Alcides Rodriguez;
plus grand finale percussion play-along with the audience

Wentz Concert Hall, Naperville, March 12
Symphony Center, Chicago, March 14

CHICAGO – Chicago Sinfonietta’s penultimate concert of the season examines the most primal element of music: the beat in BYOB: Bring Your Own Beat, featuring renowned Chicago Symphony Orchestra principal percussionist Cynthia Yeh and Alcides Rodriguez of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. Chicago Sinfonietta performs BYOB: Bring Your Own Beat twice: first, in the western suburbs at Wentz Concert Hall of North Central College, Naperville, Saturday, March 12 at 8 pm, and then again in its downtown Chicago home, Symphony Center, Monday, March 14 at 7:30 pm

This rhythmic performance begins fittingly with William Grant Still’s infectious Festive Overture, followed by Ricardo Lorenz’s Maracas Concerto featuring Alcides Rodriguez playing this unusual solo instrument. Sinfonietta Music Director Mei-Ann Chen, a fierce proponent for and mentor of young conductors, then welcomes the talented Roger Kalia, a Project Inclusion Freeman Fellow, to the podium as to tag team on Chadwick’s Symphonic Sketches, with Chen conducting Jubilee and Kalie guest conducting for Noel. The second half kicks off with Jennifer Higdon’s Percussion Concerto performed by Cynthia Yeh, and concludes with the audience joining the orchestra on the fast-paced, indigenous sounds of the 4th Movement (Malambo-Final Dance) of Ginastera’s Estancia: Four Dances. To play along, audience members will either bring their own small percussion instruments or create new instruments in the lobby pre-concert and during intermission, which can then be played back in their seats during the concert’s raucous, crowdsourced grand finale led by Maestro Mei-Ann Chen.

Additional pre-concert and intermission activities include the opportunity to take a spin on Chicago artist Dave Ford’s Swing Set Drum Kit installation, an interactive sonic sculpture that invites audience members of all ages to create rhythmic sounds simply through the act of swinging. Additionally, El Jimador tequila will provide patrons (21+) with complimentary tequila tastings.

Title:                Chicago Sinfonietta presents BYOB - Bring Your Own Beat

Dates:    Saturday, March 12 at 8:00 p.m. at Wentz Concert Hall of North Central College
Monday, March 14 at 7:30 p.m. at Orchestra Hall of Symphony Center

Tickets:            Single tickets range from $18-$60 for concerts at Symphony Center and $48-$60 for concerts at Wentz Concert Hall, with special $10 pricing available for students at both concerts. Tickets can be purchased by calling Chicago Sinfonietta at 312.284.1554 or online at


Festive Overture
Pataruco: Concerto for Venezuelan Maracas and Orchestra performed by Alcides Rodriguez
Symphonic Sketches: Jubilee and Noel (Noel guest conducted by Roger Kalia)
Percussion Concerto performed by Cynthia Yeh
Estancia: Four Dances, 4th Movement, Danz final (Malambo-Final Dance) with audience participation

  Mei-Ann Chen, conductor
  Roger Kalia, Project Inclusion Conducting Freeman Fellow and special guest        


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