Presented on Anniversary of World Premiere of Landmark Work on 
May 22, 1874 

Encore Presentation Features CSO’s October 2013 Performance Originally 
Streamed Live During the Verdi Bicentennial 

CHICAGO—The Chicago Symphony Orchestra Association (CSOA) announces that the 2013 concert performance of Verdi’s Requiem featuring Music Director Riccardo Muti leading the Chicago Symphony Orchestra (CSO) and Chorus, prepared by Chorus Director Duain Wolfe, and distinguished soloists will be shared as an encore digital presentation on Friday, May 22 at 7:30 p.m . Central Daylight Time (CDT) oncso.org and in watch parties at that time on the CSO’s Facebook and YouTube channels, followed by additional Facebook watch parties on Saturday, May 23 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, May 24 at 1:30 p.m. The event coincides with the anniversary of the world premiere of the landmark work on May 22, 1874, and anticipates the Memorial Day holiday on Monday, May 25. This is presented by the CSOA as part of an ongoing response to the COVID-19 pandemic that has interrupted live concert performances around the world and to honor the memory of those who have lost their lives to the disease. The presentations on May 22, 23 and 24 offer music lovers an opportunity to share in a virtual concert experience that includes interactive commentary.

Verdi’s Messa da Requiem, a signature work for Muti and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, has been performed to critical acclaim numerous times during Muti’s tenure, first in January 2009, when he was music director designate. The work also has been performed on subsequent subscription concerts in Chicago, as well as on international tour performances with the Tokyo Opera Singers at Tokyo’s Bunka Kaikan in 2019 and with the Wiener Singverein at Vienna’s Musikverein in 2014 and 2020. The CSO Resound recording of Verdi’s Requiem featuring Muti and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Chorus was released in 2010 and won two Grammy® awards for Best Classical Album and Best Choral Performance. The CD release of the recording is available at symphonystore.com.

Verdi’s Requiem was written as a tribute to two significant figures in 19th century Italian culture, the composer Gioachino Rossini and the poet and writer Alessandro Manzoni, who Verdi greatly admired and respected. Verdi conducted the world premiere performance in Milan on May 22, 1874, on the one-year anniversary of Manzoni’s death. The work remains one of Verdi’s best-known and widely performed works and demonstrates the composer’s unrivaled use of musical drama and masterful vocal writing.

Originally recorded in Orchestra Hall in Chicago on October 10, 2013, the performance was initially streamed live in conjunction with the 200th anniversary of Verdi’s birth in an international webcast event and presented as part of the CSO’s larger Verdi bicentennial celebration in the 2013/14 season. Featured soloists in the October 2013 performance include Tatiana Serjan (soprano), Daniela Barcellona (mezzo-soprano), Mario Zeffiri (tenor), and Ildar Abdrazakov (bass).

The Chicago Symphony Orchestra is grateful to Carolyn and Matthew Bucksbaum for generously underwriting the streaming and recording of this concert in 2013.

This presentation of Verdi’s Requiem follows an April 12, 2020 Facebook Premiere event featuring the CSO’s 2014 performance of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony that attracted audiences from the U.S. and more than 20 countries. It is also part of expanded audio and video content accessible through the “CSO From Home” content portal cso.org/csofromhome that includes the new CSO radio series—From the CSO’s Archives: Maestro’s Choice, presented in partnership with WFMT (Chicago’s Classical Music Station), and personal video messages from musicians of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra which are also being posted regularly on the CSO’s FacebookInstagramTwitter and YouTube channels. More digital content will continue to come online throughout Spring 2020. 

The CSO’s music director position is endowed in perpetuity by a generous gift from the Zell Family Foundation.