On the occasion of its 60th anniversary
the Cleveland Arts Prize, in partnership with The Cleveland History Center, recognizes sixty creative artists from Cleveland and Northeast Ohio whose extraordinary contributions to the arts
in the years before the Arts Prize existed
enriched our community’s, and the nation’s, life.





Our Past Masters

There were great writers, artists, composers, architects and designers, as well as memorable figures of stage and screen doing remarkable things well before there was a Cleveland Arts Prize. We have seized upon the occasion of CAP’s 60th anniversary to shine a spotlight on these extraordinary individuals who contributed so notably to the region’s—and larger world’s—culture.



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Event Schedule


October 2022

Schelomo, Hebraic Rhapsody for Cello and Orchestra

Friday-Saturday, October 7-8, 2022

Nikolai Szeps-Znaider leads the Cleveland Orchestra in a performance of Past Master Ernest Bloch’s Schelomo, Hebraic Rhapsody for Cello and Orchestra, with Mark Kosower as soloist. Also on the program: Beethoven’s Symphony No. 3 (“Eroica”) and Lamentation of the Disasters of War by Canadian-American composer Karim Al-Zand (b.1970), whose music has been called “strong and startlingly lovely” (Boston Globe). The final work in Bloch’s Jewish Cycle (1911-1916), Schelomo (the Jewish name for Solomon) retells, in wordless music, the life of that compelling figure, using things like the call of the shofar and rhythmic patterns taken from the psalms to convey the feel and character of his world. The cello becomes the voice of King Solomon, expressing contrasting emotions—from his sensuousness and passion and his hopes for humankind to his  despair over the suffering and misery of the world.

Considered the composer’s greatest work, Schelomo was his attempt, said Bloch, to capture “the complex, ardent, agitated soul that vibrates for me in the Bible.”

Mandel Concert Hall at Severance Music Center.

February 2022

Cleveland Silent Film Festival & Colloquium

The 2022 Cleveland Silent Film Festival is a new venture of exciting programs of silent film era classics accompanied by top silent film music specialists including workshops for area musicians interested in learning to play for silent films.

Cleveland Arts Prize is excited to be a collaborative partner in this festival celebrating one of our Past Masters, J.S. Zamecnik

Join us for the kickoff concert  on Sunday, February 13, 2022 at 3pm, celebrating the music of J.S. Zamecnik, film music pioneer, Cleveland native, and protégé of renowned Czech composer Antonín Dvořák. The program includes Zamecnik chamber works written during studies with Dvořák in Prague, a masterwork from Dvořák’s American period, and colorful highlights from Zamecnik’s photoplay music that you’ll also be able to hear accompanying scenes in Sunrise next Sunday at the Cinematheque.

The concert will take place at the Hermit Club theater in Playhouse Square, where Zamecnik began his theater music career as the music director of The Hermit Club Orchestra. Performers include members of the Cleveland Orchestra along with Rodney Sauer, music director of The Mont Alto Motion Picture Orchestra, an ensemble nationally known for its definitive interpretation of historic film scores.

   more info  

December 4, 2021

Honoring Our Past Masters: The Golden Age of Cleveland Art, 1900–1945

An exhibition of long unseen masterworks by some of Cleveland’s most famous artists graciously lent by private collections opens at the Cleveland History Center of the Western Reserve Historical Society thanks to a partnership of CHS and Case Western Reserve University’s Department of Art History and Art, College of Arts and Sciences and curated by Case’s eminent art historian Henry Adams with assistance of eight graduate students earning academic credit. The artists represented include August Biehle, Margaret Bourke-White, Charles Burchfield, Clarence Carter, R. Guy Cowan, Clara Deike, Carl Gaertner, Raphael Gleitsmann, Joseph Jicha, Max Kalish, Henry Keller, Roy Lichtenstein, James Harley Minter, Elmer Ladislaw Novotny, Hugo Robus, Charles Salée, Don Schreckengost, Viktor Schreckengost, Hughie Lee Smith, William Sommer, Rolf Stoll, Paul Travis, Abel Warshawsky and Frank Wilcox. Attendees will also be able to explore the adjoining Hay-McKinney Mansion, one of the city’s legendary residences from that era, decked out for the holidays just as it was 100 years ago. . .

Saturday, December 4, 2021
Cleveland History Center
Exhibition runs until April 3, 2022

November 21, 2021

The East Cleveland Postman Who Became a Celebrated Composer

After the New York Critics named CIM student Howard Swanson’s 1950 Symphony No. 2 the most interesting composition of the season, it had 30 performances across the U.S, by most of America’s major orchestras, including Cleveland’s. This work of “dignity and engaging thoughtfulness” by one of our most distinguished African American composers returns to Severance Hall as the Cleveland Orchestra’s associate conductor Vinay Parameswaran and the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Orchestra begin their new season. A recording of the concert will be aired on WCLV FMN 104.9 on January 1st, 2022, and will remain a permanent part of the station’s music library.

Sunday, November 21, 2021
Mandel Hall at Severance
3 PM

October 25, 2021

Sci-Fi Writing Workshop

Ursuline College and Lake Erie College are co-sponsoring a virtual two-part science fiction writing workshop exploring the works of the late Cleveland writer Andre (nee Alice) Norton. The sessions take place on two consecutive Mondays, October 25 and November 1, both from 7:00-9:00 p.m. via Zoom. Attendance at both sessions is encouraged. The workshop is free and open to the public with registration required.

Monday, October 25, 2021
Ursuline College
7 PM – 9 PM