The Cleveland Orchestra offers a performance of the Tesla Orchestra to students after the October 6 concert

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By Mike Telin

The Cleveland Orchestra will take you to Rome this weekend without the need for a plane ticket or passport. Franz Welser-Möst is your guide and the route includes the fountains, pines and festivals of Rome as depicted in Ottorino Respighi’s spectacular symphonic poems, with performances Thursday through Sunday.

After the Thursday concert, participating students can join another excursion, this time into the magic of musical lightning. A student appreciation evening on the front patio of Severance Hall will feature the Cleveland Orchestra’s brass trio “Factory Seconds”. Jack Sutte, trumpet, Jesse McCormick, horn, and Richard Stout, trombone, playing with the Tesla Orchestra, premiered by Sears think

at Case Western Reserve University.

The Tesla Orchestra is made up of coils that use custom electronic hardware and software to convert MIDI encoded music into pulses emitted by the coils. “Musicians each have a microphone attached to their instruments, which translates the sounds they produce into electrical signals,” Jim Sector, the Orchestra’s assistant director of loyalty marketing, explained in a telephone conversation.

“The sparks modulate at the frequencies that the instruments produce at the same time. It is as if the musicians are playing their instrument and the Tesla coil at the same time. It produces a sound that resembles that of a vintage video game, ”said Sector. “It might be a cliché, but you really have to see it to believe it.” Click here to see for yourself.

The reception is reserved for members of the Orchestra’s Frequent Fan Card, Student Ambassador and Student Advantage programs, which are part of the Center for Future Audiences. Will older spectators be turned away from the festivities? “The reception is for the students, but we’re not going to kick anyone out,” Sector said with a chuckle.

Launched in 2010, the Center for Future Audiences was established to fund programs to develop new generations of audiences for Cleveland Orchestra concerts with the goal of creating one of the youngest audiences of any symphony orchestra nationwide. “The popularity of the programs has exploded, and we’re very happy with it,” Sector said. “We now have about 20,000 students attending concerts at Severance, and about the same number of teens under the age of eighteen attend concerts at Blossom. Over the course of a year, we have about 40,000 people attending concerts who are under 25, which is about 20% of our audience each night.

The industry is pleased that students from all academic disciplines are taking advantage of the programs. “We have a high concentration of CIM, Oberlin, and BW, and many students pursue all kinds of majors. We have a large number of medical students who attend it regularly, and so do law students. We are very proud of these programs. The student discount is nothing new, but the increased frequency of attendance is really bringing the Orchestra into student life in a way that goes beyond just saying that we have lowered the price of student tickets. . Read the rest of the article on

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