The Violin Concerto of Johannes Brahms needs no introduction, nor does the magisterial Julia Fischer, the soloist on this occasion. But for how many CSO subscribers will the names William Grant Still (1895–1978) and Florence Price (1887–1953) ring even the faintest bell? Well, they were the first two African-American composers to be taken up by major orchestras. Each left a huge catalogue of works that posterity is just beginning to explore. They could hope for no more persuasive champion than Riccardo Muti, a more inquisitive and responsible student of music history than most other maestros of the top tier. —M.G.
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