The Detroit Symphony Orchestra continues to demonstrate its commitment to diverse programming and innovative cultural experiences with two recent announcements. Last week, the organization introduced the Peter D. & Julie F. Cummings Cube, a revamped performance space that also marks the beginning of new programming stream for the Max M. & Marjorie S. Fisher Music Center’s black box performance venue. This week, the orchestra’s Next Gen volunteer committee will host Mysterium, a unique evening of classical, pops, and jazz performances.
The Cube, formerly known as the Music Box, has been renamed in honor of DSO Chairman Emeritus Peter Cummings and his wife Julie, whose lifetime giving to the DSO has surpassed the $10 million milestone. Plans for this “reimagined” Midtown venue began in June, when the DSO appointed Christopher L. Harrington, the DSO’s Managing Director of the Paradise Jazz Series and former Director of Audience Development, as Managing Director & Curator for The Cube.
A Detroit native with a passion for music and a successful track record in audience development for the DSO, Harrington defines The Cube in terms of the “Curated, Urban, and Boundless Experience” it promises to deliver audiences. His first season of programming will strengthen and increase the number of the popular series known as Mix @ The Max (contemporary music mixing food, drink, shopping) and Om @ The Max (a mass yoga session set to live music), as well as add additional performances throughout the year that push the boundaries of music and offer an immersive experience for audiences.
In a press release, Harrington expressed his excitement about the DSO’s new venture: “It’s a pleasure and an honor to have this opportunity to present programming that’s not only accessible, but also relevant to communities we’re currently serving and the new audiences we intend to attract with consciously curated experiences.” The Cube’s inaugural performance took place at a launch party on Monday, September 12, where a new logo and brand identity for the venue were revealed prior to a concert by Red Baraat, a pioneering eight-piece band that merge North Indian Bhangra with go-go, rock, and jazz.
Continuing in the spirit of pioneering cultural offerings is Mysterium, which will feature DSO musicians performing classical, pops, and jazz in three settings throughout the Max M. and Marjorie S. Fisher Music Center, allowing guests to move from room to room for a musical evening meant to stimulate all five senses. The event is the brainchild of the DSO’s Next Gen, a volunteer committee of young professionals whose focus is attracting and engaging a younger audience at DSO concerts and events.
Christa Hoen, co-chair of Next Gen, had this to say about the upcoming performance in a press release: “Mysterium is our signature event and will really be an experience to overhaul any misconceptions that the symphony is only the Mozart or Bach that most young people think it is. By hosting an event that moves attendees through the hall, allowing them to get comfortable with the spaces and surprising them with various kinds of music, our goal is to begin to build interest in one of the best artistic assets of Detroit.”
Mysterium will take place on Thursday, September 22, with doors opening at 5:30 p.m. and the performance beginning at 6 p.m. Tickets to Mysterium are $50 ad include all three performances, hors d’oeuvres, drink tickets, and access to a post-concert afterglow. For more information on The Cube and Mysterium, and to purchase tickets, please visit the DSO’s official website.