by Peter Feher
The Cleveland Orchestra took on a timeless subject, but added a modern touch, last weekend at Severance Music Center. War was the theme of this mostly somber program that started with the disillusionment of a 21st-century composer and ended with the conflict and triumph of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 3 (“Eroica”).
In a different ensemble’s interpretation, that trajectory could sound aggressive and even dispiriting. But with guest conductor Nikolaj Szeps-Znaider, the Orchestra committed to finding the beauty in every phrase, redeeming the rough edges of an otherwise excellent performance on Thursday, October 13.