by Daniel Hathaway
First came Apple’s Siri (if she didn’t know the answer to a question, she’d helpfully reply, “I can look that up for you on the internet”). Then Amazon’s Alexa offered hands-free connections to the web (“Alexa, play NPR”) — while perhaps also listening in on our conversations.
Now, The Cleveland Orchestra has introduced Adella, named after its founder and first general manager, Adella Prentiss Hugues. She will knowledgeably serve as curator for all of the Orchestra’s digital content. That includes premium items — the In Focus Concert Series and Cleveland Orchestra Showcase — as well as free video from the Orchestra’s archives, expeditions behind the scenes, and “On A Personal Note” podcasts.
Central to Adella’s mission is bringing musicians back to Severance Hall to make music for the Orchestra’s patrons for the first time since the pandemic threw a spanner into the works in March. The In Focus series, which begins this Thursday, October 15, will comprise five, one-hour programs recorded mostly by the Orchestra’s strings, masked and physically distanced on the Severance stage. Wind players will be used sparingly. A few souls will be invited to attend, but most will watch via the stream. [Read more…]