The UChicago Presents series has been killing it in recent years, especially as pertains to its roster of string quartets. World-class bruisers like the Takács, Jupiter and Pacifica (the UChicago ensemble-in-residence) quartets have made appearances, and now the Hyde Park institution is adding the excellent Shanghai Quartet to the list. With over 25 albums under its collective belt, this band is responsible for a heavy dose of new commissions, including the one I’m most itching to hear them play: Krzysztof Penderecki’s String Quartet No. 3: Leaves from an unwritten diary.
The CSO and the Lyric Opera are the alpha dogs in town—with good reason, what with global big-shots like Riccardo Muti and Renee Fleming in the fold. But its the small ensembles that make Chicago the hotbed of new-music, that brand of modern chamber sounds. Regular events like the Frequency Series at Constellation and local troupes such as Third Coast Percussion and eighth blackbird keep pushing the supposedly stuffy genre of classical music in exciting new directions for the 21st century. In the summer, the music moves outside with the Grant Park Music Festival, Ravinia Festival and free series like Loops and Variations in Millennium Park.
Here are our picks of the best classical events on offer this month.
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