A cello player in an orchestra doesn't get many solos — a phrase in Mahler here, a line in Stravinsky there. But at the Michigan Theater on Saturday, December 8, Cleveland will get her chance to shine in the biggest, longest cello solo in the standard repertoire: Don Quixote, Richard Strauss's musical translation of Cervantes's masterpiece, with
the principal cello taking the leading role as the Knight of the Sorrowful Countenance.
"I've never played Don Quixote before," says Cleveland. "I had to learn parts of it for auditions, but I never had to learn this whole thing before. I've been working on it since May. I spent quite a while learning the notes and deciding how it should be played. Then I listened to recordings to see how I matched up. Thankfully, I was right in there."