After becoming persona non grata following condemnation from Stalin himself in “Pravda,” Russian composer Dmitri Shostakovich achieved a remarkable and controversial comeback with his Fifth Symphony, which he labeled “A Soviet artist’s practical creative reply to just criticism.” Whatever we want to make of Shostakovich caving in to the notorious dictator in such a public manner, the work itself remains his most popular and is his masterpiece of the symphonic genre. Myung-Whun Chung conducts, who is probably best remembered as being legendary late-CSO-principal-guest-conductor Carlo Maria Guilini’s right-hand man in Los Angeles during Guilini’s post-CSO music directorship there. The Beethoven Sixth “Pastoral” Symphony rounds out the program. (Dennis Polkow)
September 21 at Orchestra Hall at Symphony Center, 220 S. Michigan, (312) 294-3000. $30-$134. 8pm.