Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Game changers

Many orchestras and classical radio stations have invited their audiences to vote for favorite pieces of classical music. A novel twist on that comes from the Chicago Sinfonietta, whose music director is the Richmond-born conductor Paul Freeman.

The orchestra, in league with the Chicago Humanities Festival, invites listeners to select "the most transformative classical music compositions ever written." A panel of seven experts selected nominees in classical, romantic and modern categories. Listeners are asked to vote for one work from each grouping, and may nominate a fourth composition as a write-in.

Two of the winners will be played in concert on Nov. 10. The Chicago Sinfonietta hopes to present a live streaming broadcast or post a downloadable video file on its website.

The deadline for voting is July 31. Here's the ballot: