Ravel’s Shéhérazade, named for the protagonist of 1,001 Arabian Nights, is a woman who employs her imagination as a means of escape. With text based on three poems by Ravel’s friend Tristan Klingsor, this song cycle drips with the color the French composer is known for.
From January 30 to February 1, Isabel Leonard sings Ravel’s Shéhérazade with James Gaffigan conducting the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, and is featured later in the program on composer Alex Temple’s Liebeslied – a piece that electronically distorts love songs of the 1950s, rendering them surreal and unrecognizable. Also on the program are Strauss’ Salome’s Dance and Schumann’s Symphony No. 4.