by Mike Telin
Whether it’s the sounds of birds, whales, or summer storms, for centuries humans have turned to the natural world for musical inspiration. While there is a seemingly endless list of nature-inspired works, one that stands out as a perennial favorite is Antonio Vivaldi’s set of violin concertos — Le quattro stagioni (“The Four Seasons”).
This weekend at Severance Hall, you can hear the sounds of chirping birds, rippling creeks, barking dogs, buzzing flies, and storms when violinist Peter Otto, guest conductor Nicholas McGegan, and The Cleveland Orchestra reunite for three performances of Vivaldi’s groundbreaking work. The program, which also includes music by Mozart (Chaconne from Idomeneo) and Haydn (Symphony No. 94), will be presented on Friday and Saturday at 8:00 pm and Sunday at 3:00 pm. Tickets are available online.
For McGegan, these concerts are extra-special for a number of reasons. “For me, working with The Cleveland Orchestra is like being given a Rolls-Royce and an infinite supply of gas,” the affable conductor said during a telephone conversation. “I think this is my tenth visit to work with them, so I hope we’re good pals by now. And this will be a terrific concert for families who are looking for something to do during the Thanksgiving weekend.”