Sounds like Paris

French-Canadian conductor Bernard Labadie specializes in historically informed performances, and has recently re-emerged after a period of serious illness. Labadie leads the Minnesota Orchestra and Chorale this week in Fauré's ethereal Requiem, with two of his compatriots — soprano Hélène Guilmette and bass-baritone Philippe Sly — singing the solos. Also on the program are Mozart's "Paris" Symphony and the Fourth Symphony of Henri-Joseph Rigel, a contemporary of Mozart's who spent most of his adult life in the French capital. (8 p.m. Fri. & Sat., Orchestra Hall, Mpls.; $12-$96, 612-371-5656 or

For cello enthusiasts

Hear Israeli musician Amit Peled perform Haydn's Cello Concerto in C and Bloch's "Prayer From Jewish Life" — on a cello that once belonged to the great Pablo Casals, no less. This Minnesota Sinfonia concert also includes Ravel's "Mother Goose Suite" and Phil Fried's "Staycation Rumba." (7:30 p.m. Sat, Temple of Aaron, St. Paul; 3 p.m. Sun., Temple Israel, Mpls.; free,

Flirting with Sondheim

Is Stephen Sondheim America's greatest living composer? Some argue he is. Others look down their noses because he works in the musical theater genre. MacPhail Center for Music invites audiences to judge for themselves with this tantalizing conspectus of Sondheim's music, featuring selections from classics such as "Company," "Into the Woods" and "A Little Night Music." Five soloists, including soprano Andrea Leap and tenor Dennis Petersen, share the vocal duties, with backing from a piano trio. (8 p.m. Sat., MacPhail Center for Music, Mpls.; $15-$25, 612-767-5250 or

Standouts on strings

Even with the bewilderingly large number of outstanding young string quartets on the international circuit, the Parker String Quartet ranks highly. The Schubert Club hosts these Harvard University artists-in-residence for a recital featuring Mozart's String Quartet No. 22, Ligeti's First Quartet and Mendelssohn's Fourth. (4 p.m. Sun., St. Anthony Park United Church of Christ, St. Paul; $21-$31, 651-292-3268 or

Fauré's finest

Fauré's chamber pieces are some of the finest music he wrote, but they're still underappreciated. Don't miss the chance to hear his Piano Quartet No. 1, played by excellent Minnesota Orchestra soloists. Also on the program are works by Erwin Schulhoff and Bernard Andrès. (4:30 p.m. Sun., Orchestra Hall, Mpls.; $12-$32, 612-371-5656 or