For those of us a certain age, Matt Haimovitz will forever be remembered as an extraordinary cellist of uncommon depth, even as a child prodigy, who used to regularly perform with the Chicago Symphony. But his talents and interests ensured that Haimovitz would not stay limited to that world and as he matured, so did what he wanted to do for his art: taking it into nightclubs and other “non-classical” environments as well as constantly commissioning new works for solo cello. Haimivitz’ latest project and CD, “After Reading Shakespeare,” features three literary-themed solo cello suites by three Pulitzer Prize-winning American composers, including Chicago composer Ned Rorem’s Bard-influenced nine-movement “After Reading Shakespeare” as well as Haimovitz’ own commissions to accompany the Rorem piece: Lewis Spratlan’s “Shadow” and Paul Moravec’s “Mark Twain Sez.” Held amidst the historic treasures of the Yelda Khorsabad Court in the University of Chicago’s Oriental Museum, the concert will be introduced by David Bevington, Phyllis Fay Horton Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus in Humanities and Professor Emeritus in English Language and Literature and Comparative Literature, University of Chicago. As he is often apt to do, Haimovitz will likely play Bach as an encore or two. (Dennis Polkow)
Thursday, May 22. University of Chicago Presents at Oriental Institute, 1155 East 58th, (773)702-1233. 6:30pm. $25.