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CLEVELAND ORCHESTRA to perform free concert as part of Cleveland Museum of Art centennial celebration

Concert to take place on Sunday, June 26 at 5:30 p.m. on the south terrace of the Cleveland Museum of Art as the finale of its Centennial Festival Weekend

Release Date:  May 5, 2016

CLEVELAND – The Cleveland Orchestra has announced the program for a free concert as part of the Cleveland Museum of Art’s Centennial Celebration season. The concert takes place on Sunday, June 26, 2016 at 5:30 p.m. during the Centennial Festival Weekend, which includes the museum’s annual Solstice celebration on the night of June 25. The concert is the festival’s grand finale and marks the conclusion of two days of experiences with the museum’s world-renowned collection, as well as a wide-ranging roster of local artists and their work that will take place inside the museum and outside around Wade Lagoon. Tickets are not required for the June 26 concert, which will take place on the museum’s south terrace in front of its iconic 1916 building.

For the first time, The Cleveland Orchestra will perform a concert on the south terrace of the Cleveland Museum of Art. The concert will feature works by Bartók, Hindemith, Mussorgsky, Respighi, and Adam Schoenberg under the direction of Cleveland Orchestra Associate Conductor Brett Mitchell. The program was created to provide connections to the visual arts and the summer solstice. Béla Bartók and Paul Hindemith, two in a long line of artists who performed in the museum’s longstanding concert series, both visited the Cleveland Museum of Art, either performing or giving lectures. The Hindemith, Respighi, and Adam Schoenberg works were inspired by the visual arts and the Mussorgsky work has a connection to the summer solstice. The complete program is listed below.

“It's a great pleasure for us to help our friends at the Cleveland Museum of Art celebrate their centennial,” said Brett Mitchell, associate conductor of The Cleveland Orchestra. "The five pieces on our program all feature intimate connections between the worlds of visual art and classical music, with two of the composers having visited and performed at the CMA during its first hundred years.”

“Having The Cleveland Orchestra perform the finale of our Centennial Festival Weekend is about the greatest birthday gift I think we could ever imagine,” said Tom Welsh, director of performing arts, the Cleveland Museum of Art.

About the Program

Paul Hindemith visited the Cleveland Museum of Art in 1939, giving lectures and performing a number of his works for viola. In addition to Hindemith's in-person visit to the museum, his opera from the previous year, 1938's Mathis der Maler, is about German Renaissance painter Matthias Grünewald and his Isenheim Altarpiece. The Hindemith selection titled “Angelic Concert,” being performed at this concert, is from the opera and is based on a scene in the altarpiece.

Béla Bartók visited the Cleveland Museum of Art in 1928. Bartók’s Hungarian Sketches, being performed on this program, are orchestrations he made in 1931 of five piano pieces he had composed between 1908 and 1911. When he visited the museum in 1928, three years before he made the orchestrations, he played the original piano versions of three of the five movements, "Evening in the Country," "Bear Dance," and "Slightly Tipsy."

Ottorino Respighi’s Three Botticelli Pictures was inspired by Botticelli paintings, while Adam Schoenberg’s Finding Rothko is a reaction to four works by Abstract Expressionist painter Mark Rothko.

Modest Mussorgsky’s A Night on Bald Mountain is a tone poem depicting St. John’s Eve, a feast day that coincides with the summer solstice.

The Cleveland Orchestra and Cleveland Museum of Art

Previously, The Cleveland Orchestra collaborated in performances at the Cleveland Museum of Art as part of the museum’s Italian Masterworks and California Masterworks exhibitions. On May 1, 2016 The Cleveland Orchestra and Cleveland Museum of Art announced that, for the first time, the Orchestra’s annual “At Home” neighborhood residency is in partnership with the Cleveland Museum of Art and will take place from June to August in Hough to celebrate music and art in this historic neighborhood east of downtown Cleveland. 

About The Cleveland Orchestra

As it nears the centennial of its founding in 2018, The Cleveland Orchestra is undergoing a new transformation and renaissance. Under the leadership of Franz Welser-Möst, now in his fourteenth year as the ensemble’s music director, The Cleveland Orchestra is acknowledged among the world’s handful of best orchestras. In 2015, the New York Times declared Cleveland to be the “best American orchestra” due to its virtuosity, elegance of sound, variety of color, and chamber-like musical cohesion. With Welser-Möst, the ensemble’s musicians, board of directors, staff, volunteers, and hometown are working together on a set of enhanced goals for the 21st century — to continue the Orchestra’s legendary command of musical excellence, to renew its focus on fully serving the communities where it performs through concerts, engagement, and music education, to develop the youngest audience of any orchestra, to build on its tradition of community support and financial strength, and to move forward into the Orchestra’s next century with an unshakeable commitment to innovation and a fearless pursuit of success.

The Cleveland Orchestra divides its time each year across concert seasons at home in Cleveland’s Severance Hall and each summer at Blossom Music Center. Additional portions of the year are devoted to touring and to a series of innovative and intensive performance residencies. These include an annual set of concerts and education programs and partnerships in Florida, a recurring residency at Vienna’s Musikverein, and regular appearances at Switzerland’s Lucerne Festival, at New York’s Lincoln Center Festival, and at Indiana University. For more information, visit

Brett Mitchell
The 2015-16 season marks Brett Mitchell’s third year as a member of The Cleveland Orchestra’s conducting staff and as music director of the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Orchestra.  His contract has been extended through the 2016-17 season, with his title raised from assistant conductor to associate conductor. He holds the Elizabeth Ring and William Gwinn Mather Endowed Conductor Chair. Mr. Mitchell serves as cover conductor for Severance Hall and Blossom Music Festival concerts, and provides assistance to music director Franz Welser-Möst, as well as leading many education and community performances throughout the year. In June 2015, he led the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Orchestra in the ensemble’s second international tour, to China.

As a guest conductor, Mr. Mitchell leads performances throughout North America, Europe, and Asia, with recent and upcoming appearances including the orchestras of Columbus, Dallas, Detroit, Houston, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, Oregon, Rochester, Saint Paul, and Washington D.C., and the Frankfurt Radio Symphony, among others.  He has also acted as musical assistant and cover conductor with the Philadelphia Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, London Philharmonic Orchestra, and Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra. 

Prior to his appointment in Cleveland, Mr. Mitchell served as assistant conductor of the Houston Symphony (2007-11), and was an assistant conductor to Kurt Masur at the Orchestre National de France (2006-09).

A native of Seattle, Brett Mitchell holds a doctor of musical arts degree from the University of Texas at Austin, where he was also music director of the University Orchestra.  He earned a bachelor of music degree in composition from Western Washington University.

About the Cleveland Museum of Art Centennial
One hundred years ago the Cleveland Museum of Art opened its doors to the public. In 2016 the museum invites all audiences to celebrate its 100th anniversary, honoring the past and looking ahead to the future. Program highlights include special centennial exhibitions representing the creative genius of four continents, spanning ancient to contemporary, as well as the presentation of extraordinary individual works of art on loan from top-tier institutions all over the world, and once-in-a-lifetime events and community programs. For more information about centennial year events, visit To join the celebration, use the official centennial hashtag #100YearsofCMA.

Concert Program and Calendar Listing Information


The Cleveland Orchestra Program at the Cleveland Museum of Art Centennial Celebration Weekend

Sunday, June 26, 2016, at 5:30 p.m.
The Cleveland Orchestra
Brett Mitchell, conductor

PAUL HINDEMITH                     Engelkonzert [Angelic Concert] from Mathis der Maler
OTTORINO RESPIGHI              Trittico Botticelliano [Three Botticelli Pictures]
                                                                     Primavera [Spring]
                                                                     Adorazione dei Magi [Adoration of the Magi]
                                                                     Nascita di Venere [The Birth of Venus]
ADAM SCHOENBERG              Finding Rothko
BÉLA BARTÓK                            Hungarian Sketches
                                                                     An Evening in the Village
                                                                     Bear Dance
                                                                     Slightly Tipsy
                                                                     Swineherd’s Dance
MODEST MUSSORGSKY          A Night on Bald Mountain (Original Version of 1867)


All programs and artists are subject to change.