Skip to main content Skip to footer site map
Virtual Events
Click Here for More Articles on Virtual Events

Collaborative Arts Institute of Chicago Announces Winter & Spring 2021 Programming

Remaining 20 | 21 programming includes three Lieder Lounge recitals, and the final installment of a Polish song workshop.

Collaborative Arts Institute of Chicago Announces Winter & Spring 2021 Programming

Collaborative Arts Institute of Chicago is continuing the celebration of its tenth anniversary season with winter and spring offerings that include three recitals as part of the Lieder Lounge series, and the final installment of a Polish song workshop. The Lieder Lounge series continues in March with a recital featuring recent Glyndebourne Opera Cup winner, baritone Edward Nelson alongside San Francisco Opera pianist Ronny Michael Greenberg. An April Lieder Lounge features CAIC Vocal Chamber Music Fellow, mezzo-soprano Anna Laurenzo with CAIC co-founder and pianist Shannon McGinnis. The 20 | 21 Lieder Lounge series comes to a close with a June recital featuring Grammy Award winning mezzo-soprano Kelley O'Connor with Chicago-based pianist Brian Locke. CAIC's new online discussion series, Heard Over The Piano, also continues with new episodes airing live on Thursday evenings through the end of the season. As part of CAIC's winter educational programming, Polish-American conductor, keyboardist, and Fulbright Fellowship recipient Michael Pecak presides over a master class focusing on the performance of Polish art song.

Online Programming

Due to the continued uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, and with the safety of the artists and audience members as its top priority, CAIC will continue to present all of its winter and spring programming online. Concerts will be pre-recorded and air on both Facebook Live as well as on the Broadcast page of CAIC's website. Concerts will remain available for 48 hours following their premiere broadcast.

Lieder Lounge Series

Following two installments this past fall, CAIC's popular Lieder Lounge series continues with three recitals in March, April, and June 2021. The first Lieder Lounge of 2021 features baritone Edward Nelson in a recital program of songs by Claude Debussy, Gustav Mahler, and Nico Muhly that airs March 5 - 7. Nelson, a recent graduate of the San Francisco Opera's Adler Fellowship, is the 2020 winner of the Glyndebourne Opera Cup and has appeared at opera companies around the world, including the Norwegian National Opera, Washington National Opera, and Opera Philadelphia. Nelson is joined by pianist Ronny Michael Greenberg, who serves on the music staff of the San Francisco Opera and has performed in concert halls around the world, including the Vienna Konzerthaus, Carnegie Hall, and Montreal's Place des Arts Theater.

The Lieder Lounge series continues April 30 - May 2 with a recital featuring CAIC Vocal Chamber Music Fellow, mezzo-soprano Anna Laurenzo in a program featuring songs by Hector Berlioz, Cécile Chaminade, Pauline Viardot, and Kurt Weill. The CAIC Vocal Chamber Music Fellowship provides educational, performance, and entrepreneurial opportunities to select classically trained Chicago-based singers and pianists. Each season, up to four singers and up to two pianists are chosen for this 30-week residency with Collaborative Arts Institute of Chicago. In addition to joining CAIC for the fellowship this season, Laurenzo has recently made debuts with Chicago Opera Theater, Fort Worth Opera, and the Lincoln Center Theater. CAIC co-founder and Director of Education, pianist Shannon McGinnis joins as Laurenzo's recital partner for this program.

The 20 | 21 season comes to a close June 4 - 6 with CAIC favorite, mezzo-soprano Kelley O'Connor. A regular with the world's leading orchestras including the Chicago Symphony, New York Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra, and the Berlin Philharmonic, the Grammy Award-winning mezzo joins pianist Brian Locke for a program of songs by Edvard Grieg, Francis Poulenc, Arnold Schönberg, as well as new musical settings of poems by Rainer Maria Rilke composed by conductor Robert Spano.

Heard Over The Piano

As part of its 20 | 21 online programming, CAIC launched a new live online discussion series, Heard Over The Piano, which features CAIC guest artists in discussion with regular series hosts, CAIC co-founders Nicholas Phan and Shannon McGinnis. Guests this past fall included mezzo-soprano Jennifer Johnson Cano, Grammy Award-winning tenor Karim Sulayman, and soprano Laquita Mitchell. The series will continue to air most Thursday evenings on Facebook Live at 7pm Central from January through May. Upcoming guests include soprano Juliet Petrus in a discussion about Chinese art song and her new book, Singing in Mandarin, pianists and vocal coaches Dana Brown and CAIC co-founder Nicholas Hutchinson in a conversation about the silver linings to online learning during the pandemic, and soprano and scholar Minnita Daniel-Cox to discuss Paul Laurence Dunbar and musical settings of his poetry.

Polish Art Song Workshop

The final installment of CAIC's workshop on Polish art song and lyric diction airs January 29 - 31. Following a series of private coaching sessions last December and a lecture that was broadcast in November, three Chicago-based singers will participate in a culminating master class on Polish song led by Chicago-based Polish-American conductor and keyboardist Michael Pecak. A former Fulbright Fellowship recipient, Pecak studied the music of 20th and 21st-century composers at the F. Chopin University of Music in Warsaw, and was an Artist-in-Residence at the Polish Studies Center of Indiana University.

Fall 2020 Recap

In addition to the first events of the Polish song workshop, CAIC's Lieder Lounge series featured recitals by two tenors this past fall: Jonathan Johnson and Karim Sulayman. Recent Ryan Opera Center alumnus Johnson was joined by Ryan Opera Center Music Director Craig Terry for a program of songs by Benjamin Britten and Henri Duparc which opened CAIC's 10th anniversary season in September. Grammy Award-winner Sulayman was joined by pianist Yi-heng Yang in December in a recital presented in partnership with the Arts Club of Chicago. Filmed in the club's beautiful salon, the duo performed Schubert Lieder featured on their recent album for Avie Records, Where Only Stars Can Hear Us.

Broadcast over the course of four weekends in October, the 2020 Collaborative Works Festival commemorated the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The festival featured exclusively the works of women composers and explored a wide range of music spanning over four and half centuries, shedding light on a long history of musical pioneers who have been overlooked due to centuries of sexism. Composers highlighted over the three concerts included Barbara Strozzi, Antonia Bembo, Lili and Nadia Boulanger, Germaine Tailleferre, Stacy Garrop, and Margaret Bonds, as well as midwestern premieres by Iva Bittová and Errollyn Wallen. 2020 Festival artists included sopranos Janai Brugger, Amanda Majeski, mezzo-soprano Amanda Lynn Bottoms, tenor and CAIC Artistic Director Nicholas Phan, baritone Chris Kenney, bass Anthony Reed, pianists Myra Huang and Shannon McGinnis, violinists Martin Davids and Ann Duggan, violist da gamba Craig Trompeter, lutenist Brandon J. Acker, and keyboardist Mark Shuldiner. The festival also included a master class led by Grammy Award-nominated Huang focused on repertoire by composers and poets who are women of color. In its review of the festival's opening Baroque concert, Opera News wrote:

"Those who doubt the power of music as a panacea in challenging times would have been convinced here; Women of the Baroque easily demonstrated why CAIC has emerged as one of the classiest vocal performance options in the city."

****** *


Ongoing: Most Thursday evenings, January 21 - June 3, 2021

Shannon McGinnis, CAIC director of education & pianist Nicholas Phan, CAIC artistic director & tenor


January 29, 2021

Broadcast premiere ( available on-demand through January 31, 2021) MASTER TEACHER:

Michael Pecak, conductor and keyboardist


March 5, 2021

Broadcast premiere ( available on-demand through March 7, 2021) PROGRAM:

Songs by Claude Debussy, Gustav Mahler, Nico Muhly, and Franz Schbert ARTISTS:

Edward Nelson, baritone | Ronny Michael Greenberg, piano


April 30, 2021

Broadcast premiere ( available on-demand through May 2. 2021) PROGRAM:

Songs by Hector Berlioz, Cécile Chaminade, Pauline Viardot, and Kurt Weill ARTISTS:

Anna Laurenzo, mezzo soprano | Shannon McGinnis, piano


June 4, 2021

Broadcast premiere ( available on-demand through June 6, 2021) PROGRAM:

Songs by Edvard Grieg, Francis Poulenc, Arnold Schönberg, and Robert Spano ARTISTS:

Kelley O'Connor, mezzo-soprano | Brian Locke, piano ****** *

Collaborative Arts Institute of Chicago works to make Chicago a world home for the study and performance of art song and vocal chamber music. In pursuit of its mission, CAIC presents performance and educational events, including the annual Collaborative Works Festival, the Lieder Lounge recital series, master classes and educational workshops. Since its founding in 2010 by pianists Shannon McGinnis and Nicholas Hutchinson, and tenor Nicholas Phan, CAIC has presented many of the world's leading proponents for the art song and vocal chamber music repertoire.

Featured at the Theatre Shop

T-Shirts, Mugs, Phone Cases & More

Related Articles

More Hot Stories For You