ST. PAUL CHAMBER ORCHESTRA
Thursday-Saturday: In the current operatic firmament, there are more star mezzos than star sopranos. Even in this crowded field, up-and-coming Metropolitan Opera mezzo Isabel Leonard is emerging as one of the brightest. She joins SPCO Artistic Partner Edo de Waart for Berlioz’s transcendent song cycle “Les Nuits d’été (Nights of Summer).” De Waart’s expertise in Berlioz raises expectations for the performance. This finale to SPCO’s abbreviated season also features Beethoven’s Symphony No. 2, as well as works by Busoni and Liszt (“The Black Gondola”). (7:30 p.m. Thu., 8 p.m. Fri.-Sat., Ordway Center, 345 Washington St., St. Paul, $10-$40, 651-291-1144, www.thespco.org.)
WILLIAM RANDALL BEARD
Poll: If the state's $1.9B surplus were "fun money," how would you spend it?