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The Arts Intel Report

A Cultural Compass
For the World Traveler
A Cultural Compass
For the World Traveler

Gustavo Dudamel conducts the National Children's Symphony of Venezuela

297 West St, Lenox, MA 01240, USA

Gustavo Dudamel, incontrovertibly the most celebrated product of Venezuela’s music-education program El Sistema, gives back, leading the cream of the nation’s aspiring musicians. The first half of the program opens with the John Adams crowd-pleaser Short Ride In a Fast Machine, followed by two selections by Latin American voices. Then, the pièce de résistance: Dmitri Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 5, in which the brutally censured composer used a musical allusion to Mahler and “eye music” (the notes of which create pictures on the page which the ear cannot perceive) to thumb his nose at his Soviet critics. His game went unnoticed, and the premiere earned him an ovation that lasted more than half an hour. Might Dudamel have a subversive message on the power of music up his sleeve? And are the kids in the know? —Matthew Gurewitsch

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Until July 31, 2025

Nov 21, 2024 – Jan 1, 2025