Orpheus in America. What's the job of an American music director today? Never has it been less clear, but Teddy Abrams is offering a particularly compelling vision at the Louisville Orchestra. The 28-year-old Curtis Institute graduate is the central character in Music Makes a City Now, a PBS.org Web series that shows Abrams' efforts to connect classical music to hipness, improvisation, innovation, different genres, and novel concert presentations like the outdoor music park of the New World Symphony. The segments are short, about six minutes, and the happy talk can grow so insistent that after a while you think these shorts must have been produced by a kind of classical music chamber of commerce. But Abrams - billed as the youngest music director of a major American orchestra - has a sincerity and substance that cut through. www.musicmakesacity.com.
- Peter Dobrin
Verdi on the Green. Opera Philadelphia's La traviata will be broadcast to screens at the big lawn of Independence Mall on Oct. 3. It's free, but registration is required, and has just opened up at operaonthemall.org.