The Cleveland Orchestra will perform Wednesday in Bloomington alongside Jacobs School of Music students.
The orchestra will perform Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 at 8 p.m. Jan. 23 at the IU Auditorium. The symphony is considered to be one of Gustav Mahler’s most popular and successful pieces of works.
During the orchestra's previous visits to the university, Jacobs students have practiced alongside the Cleveland Orchestra in an ensemble and participated in master classes on individual instruments.
“The orchestra was founded 100 years ago with education as a central component of its mission,” said Lisa Wong, director of Choruses for the Cleveland Orchestra. “And all of us in the organization are very proud to continue this tradition 100 years later.”
This year for the orchestra’s biannual residency at IU, it's extending an invitation to the school’s Oratorio Chorus to join its performance at the Auditorium.
“I think it’s just such a formative experience for them first of all to perform with musicians of this caliber,” Wong said.
Drew Beaty, Oratorio Chorus member and sophomore music education major, said the opportunity to work with the Cleveland Orchestra is unbelievable.
“It’s weird because it’s presented as a fairly normal opportunity at Jacobs School of Music,” Beaty said. “But when you take a step back, it’s amazing and it’s something that can go on everybody’s resume.”
Wong reiterated the importance of providing students with a professional opportunity like this while still in school.
“I think it is also essential that they get a little bit of this kind of real world experience,” Wong said. “So many people who are studying at the Jacobs School of Music want this career path, to be a professional musician. So I think Cleveland offers just a fantastic role model of what that really could be like after graduation.”
Beaty expressed her gratitude for the experience the Cleveland Orchestra is providing.
“It’s just amazing to get a professional opportunity,” Beaty said. “It’s a different experience to get a truly professional conductor and a truly professional experience.”
The Oratorio Chorus members will work with conductor, Franz Welser-Möst, when they make their appearance onstage for the last 15 minutes of the performance.
Wong paid a visit to Bloomington last week to help the Oratorio Chorus rehearse for the performance and give them a better idea of what to expect. This week they will first have one piano rehearsal with the music director to focus on the chorus, and then they will rehearse once more with the music director and the entire orchestra.
“Expect just truly a world class, beautiful performance,” Wong said. “I think that it will be so special to see not only the Cleveland Orchestra but the Jacobs Oratorio Chorus performing alongside the Orchestra in what is undoubtedly one of the best pieces in all of the choral orchestral literature.”