Muti Conducts Beethoven & Gershwin

Jun 13

8:00 PM

Beethoven, Gershwin

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Riccardo Muti leads Gershwin’s cinematic An American in Paris and two piccolo concertos featuring the CSO's own Jennifer Gunn. Also on the program is the world premiere of a bass trombone concerto by James Stephenson, a composer of “straightforward, unabashedly beautiful sounds” (The Boston Herald), featuring Charles Vernon of the world-famous Chicago Symphony Orchestra brass.

Standby tickets now available. Please call 312-294-3000 to order and for more information.


Vivaldi Piccolo Concerto in C Major, RV 444
Benshoof Concerto in Three Movements
Beethoven Symphony No. 2
Stephenson Bass Trombone Concerto [World Premiere, CSO Commission]
Gershwin An American in Paris



Preconcert conversation with William White
30 minute run-time

Thursday, June 13, 6:45-7:15 Grainger Ballroom
Friday, June 14, 12:15-12:45 Armour Stage
Saturday, June 15, 6:45-7:15 Armour Stage

Additional Dates for this Program

Charles Vernon, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s internationally acclaimed bass trombone player, is no stranger to world premieres. He performed the debuts of two concertos with the CSO in 1991 and 2006, and by 2015, he was ready to tackle a third. Vernon narrowed the list of composers down to four finalists, and settled on James Stephenson of Lake Forest, Ill. “I’ve listened to a lot of things he’s written over the years,” said Vernon, who will perform the world premiere June 13-15 of Stephenson's Bass Trombone Concerto with the CSO and Riccardo Muti. “He understood the instrument fairly well. I just liked the way he composed.” Read more at CSO Sounds & Stories

Charles Vernon gave composer James Stephenson a tall order: Make this the greatest piece ever been written for the trombone. Vernon, the soloist in the world-premiere performances June 13-15 of Stephenson's Bass Trombone Concerto, a CSO commission, with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Riccardo Muti, thinks the composer has succeeded. Read more at CSO Sounds & Stories

Ahead of her solo turn June 13-15 with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Riccardo Muti, Jennifer Gunn discussed the program, which showcases her in Ken Benshoof’s Concerto in Three Movements and Antonio Vivaldi's Piccolo Concerto in C Major, RV 444. Read more at CSO Sounds & Stories

Composer James Stephenson recalls that when the CSO's Charles Vernon told him about the commission for a new bass trombone concerto, he asked for two things: that it would be the “most profound, beautiful and lasting musical event to be played on the bass trombone” and that it would be “a great story, like a book you can’t stop reading.” Read more at CSO Sounds & Stories


Global Sponsor of the CSO

Official Airline of the CSO

These performances are made possible by the Juli Plant Grainger Fund for Artistic Excellence.

This program is partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council Agency.