There is a long history of respectful distance for the music of Bach at the Chicago Symphony, understandable since the symphony orchestra as we know it came about after his death. But former Ravinia music director James Levine began a tradition of leading all six of the Bach Brandenburg Concertos in the 1970s —some of which were even recorded at the time and just re-released on BMG—but the last time this was attempted, an inattentive CSO violinist ruined the concert by having his music out of order and stopped the proceedings to reshuffle. And then there was the infamous recorded set with Solti and the CSO that were begun but never finished nor released which are now known as the Abandenburgs. Will conductor, violinist and violist Jaime Loredo, who is better known for Brahms than Bach, be able to revive this tradition? His tempos are likely to be so slow that any daydreaming performers who may have to reorder their music should have plenty of time to do so between beats. (Dennis Polkow)
August 9 at Ravinia Festival.