2024-2025 SERIES: Soul & Inspiration


Musical Insights

Free Pre-Concert Preview Series!

October 20, Friday, at 1:30 pm

Enhance your concert experience with a sneak preview — Composers come alive and their passions take center stage when ESO Maestro Lawrence Eckerling takes you on an insider’s tour of the history and highlights behind the music.

Maestro Lawrence Eckerling will explore the concert program in depth.


The Merion
Friday, October 20 at 1:30 pm,
Merion's Emerald Lounge at
529 Davis St, Evanston.
FREE and open to the public.
Please RSVP to 847-570-7815.

Light refreshments will be served and casual tours of apartments will be available after the program.

Give the gift of music

Treat a friend or relative to the ESO

Give the gift of music by ordering directly from our website and purchasing a custom gift certificate in any denomination of your choice! Certificates may be redeemed for single ticket or season subscriptions for any of our concerts.

You will receive an electronic gift certificate or we can mail the certificate to you or directly to the recipient.

Latest news

Young Persons' Concert on March 9

This one-hour concert at Pick-Staiger is the ideal introductory orchestral concert for children 5–13 years, but will also be fun for parents and grandparents. The concert is designed to show the wonderful storytelling nature of music.

The ESO will perform the ever-popular The Sorcerer’s Apprentice by Paul Dukas and also pieces like the Superman March by John Williams, and the delightful Mozart piece for strings only — Eine Kleine Nachtmusik.

Also on the program:

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Health & Safety

Masks, vaccinations, and testing are no longer required to attend ESO concerts. However, after discussion with our expert physician consultant and given the recent rise in COVID, flu and RSV infections in the Chicago area, the ESO encourages masking during the concert. As always, we ask that if you are sick, please stay home to prevent the spread of illness. The ESO continues to monitor COVID and will adapt this policy as needed.

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Vibrant Saxophone Melodies

The first saxophone was invented around 1840 in Brussels by Adolphe Sax, whose family was a maker of woodwind instruments. The metal-bodied, single-reed instrument was developed through the rest of the 19th century, primarily in French-speaking regions. Music with sax began to emerge in the 19th century and was used strikingly in important orchestral works in the early 20th. Earlier this season, you’ve heard saxophones at Pick-Staiger in both Rachmaninoff’s Symphonic Dances and Gershwin’s An American in Paris.

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One-Hit Wonder

French composer Paul Dukas (1865-1935) is best known for a single orchestral work, The Sorcerer’s Apprentice. Based on a 1797 poem by Wolfgang von Goethe, the piece was written in 1897 and premiered later that same year in Paris with Dukas himself conducting the performance. The piece was an instant hit.

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Timeless Beauty and Vibrant Energy

Samuel Barber's (1910-1981) Adagio for Strings is a musical gem that has resonated with audiences for decades. Known for its emotional depth and hauntingly beautiful melody, this piece transports listeners to a realm where every note carries the weight of human experience. Originally part of the second movement of his String Quartet, the Adagio has found its way into the hearts of many through its transcendent orchestral arrangement.

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