Listening to Skrowaczewski

When Stanislaw Skrowaczewski passed away last month, the tributes understandably focused on his status as a great conductor, not to mention his association with the Minnesota Orchestra spanning five decades. Don’t forget — Skrowaczewski was a fine composer, too. The Chamber Music Society of Minnesota honors his memory with a concert devoted to his music. The program features the “Fantasie per Quattro” (for clarinet, violin, cello and piano) and “Fantasie per Sei” (for oboe, violin, viola, cello, double bass and piano) as well as a new commission from Minnesota composer Steve Heitzeg. (4 p.m. Sun., Sundin Music Hall, Hamline University, St. Paul; $15-$25, 651-450-0527 or

Puccini one-acts

Puccini’s one-act operas can be logistically awkward for major opera companies to stage. However, they are perfect for smaller companies like the U of M’s University Opera Theatre. The company will stage “Suor Angelica,” a tale of sexual secrets set in a convent, in the style of Japanese Kabuki theater. Also on the program is “Gianni Schicchi,” a bubbling comedy boasting one of Puccini’s best-known arias, “O mio babbino caro.” U of M associate professor David Walsh directs. (7:30 p.m. Thu.-Sat.; 1:30 p.m. Sun.; Ted Mann Concert Hall, Mpls.; $5-$25, 612-624-2345 or


For Schumann fans

Soprano Miah Persson and baritone Florian Boesch are two of the finest singers on the international classical circuit. And their program of Robert Schumann songs is a dream ticket for lovers of German Lieder. The outstanding pianist Malcolm Martineau accompanies, adding further luster to this unmissable recital. (10:30 a.m. Wed., 7:30 p.m. Thu.; Ordway Concert Hall, St. Paul; $28-$67, 651-292-3268 or


Brahms and Stravinsky

Twelve years ago, Rafal Blechacz became the first pianist to win all five prizes at the International Chopin Piano Competition. He joins the Minnesota Orchestra this week for two performances of Brahms’ magisterial First Piano Concerto. The concert also features Stravinsky’s blockbuster “The Rite of Spring.” Osmo Vänskä conducts. (8 p.m. Fri. & Sat.; Orchestra Hall, Mpls.; $29-$96, 612-371-5656 or minnesota

All-American choir

Can music reflect politics, or even influence it? The Cantus vocal ensemble thinks so. Its “America Will Be!” program examines how the struggle for freedom and equality has been reflected in American music, featuring composers both old and new. (7:30 p.m. Fri., MacPhail Center for Music, Mpls.; 7:30 p.m. Sat., Trinity Lutheran Church, Stillwater; $10-$30, 612-435-0055 or