“Cwazy wabbit” to run with The Cleveland Orchestra

Bethany Early

Bugs Bunny and The Cleveland Orchestra may seem an unlikely pair, but the two will join forces to entertain this summer during Blossom Music Center’s 2006 Blossom Festival.

“Bugs Bunny on Broadway,” to be shown at 8 p.m. on Aug. 12, will feature original Warner Bros. cartoons projected on the big screen and synchronized to the live music of The Cleveland Orchestra.

The Blossom Festival is an annual summer series of weekend concerts at Blossom Music Center, the summer home of The Cleveland Orchestra. In addition to The Cleveland Orchestra, the 2006 festival features performances by the Blossom Festival Orchestra and The Canadian Brass. The festival, which has been running since July 8, will continue to run each Saturday and Sunday until Sept. 3, with a Friday performance on Aug. 25.

The festival concerts are planned to attract people who are new to the orchestral scene by adding excitement using name recognition, such as that of Bugs Bunny, said Emily Grimes, associate director of marketing for The Cleveland Orchestra.

Other highlights of the 2006 season include this Sunday evening’s “Scheherazade,” a side-by-side concert with The Cleveland Orchestra and the Kent/Blossom Chamber Orchestra, and the July 29 and 30 performances of “Music of John Williams and Other Hollywood Greats.” This show will feature music from “Harry Potter,” “E.T.,” “Star Wars” and more, performed by the Blossom Festival Orchestra.

Grimes said audience members should expect the unexpected, as Blossom is an outside venue.

“You can’t control the weather. You never know when a bird will want to take over a soloist’s performance. or the power will go out,” she said.

Dennis and Janeen Crowley, and daughter Elizabeth, are frequent patrons of The Cleveland Orchestra performances – at Blossom and elsewhere.

“They are consistently good. This is the best orchestra I’ve heard and we’ve heard orchestras all around the world.. Not one performance is mediocre,” Dennis Crowley said. “This is certainly one of the premier music festivals.”

The Cleveland Orchestra has performed 871 concerts at Blossom since its opening in 1968 through the end of the 2005 festival season, according to the 2006 festival program.

Guests have the option of purchasing pavilion tickets for a traditional concert experience or lawn tickets for a more laid-back evening.

“You can design the concert experience you want. come as you are. “It’s less intimidating,” Grimes said.

For a full schedule of 2006 Blossom Festival shows, visit http://www.clevelandorch.com/html/blossom/blossomindex.asp.

Contact Blossom and Porthouse reporter Bethany Early at [email protected].