Cleveland Orchestra

Cleveland Orchestra, one of the foremost orchestras in the United States. It gave its first performance in 1918 under Nikolai Sokoloff, who was conductor until 1933. In 1931, the orchestra moved from the Cleveland Masonic Temple into the Georgian-style Severance Hall, located in Cleveland's University Circle area. (The hall was restored and renovated in 1999 and reopened in 2000.) Since 1968, the orchestra has also performed at the Blossom Music Center just S of the city. Sokoloff was succeeded as conductor by Artur Rodzinski (1933–43) and Erich Leinsdorf (1943–46), and the orchestra achieved renown under the direction of George Szell (1946–70). A perfectionist and disciplinarian, Szell brought the orchestra to international attention, leading it on several European tours and establishing its modern reputation for ascetic brilliance and commitment to serious music. He was succeeded by Lorin Maazel (1972–84), Christoph von Dohnányi (1984–2002), and Franz Welser-Möst (2002–). The orchestra tours widely, has a biennial residency at the Musikverein in Vienna, and since 2007 has had a winter residence at the Carnival Center in Miami.

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