Imagination Artist Series returns featuring Nathaniel Rateliff’s “A Night of Leonard Cohen with the Colorado Symphony”

Article Contributed by Sacks and Company | Published on Wednesday, December 6, 2023

Today, hometown hero Nathaniel Rateliff announces his return to Boettcher Concert Hall on April 5 and 6, 2024, for a tribute to legendary singer/songwriter Leonard Cohen. Opening with a solo piano set from Phil Cook, the performance is part of the Colorado Symphony’s Imagination Artist Series featuring brand new collaborations with Rateliff, RZA, and Mary-Mitchell Campbell. Purchase tickets HERE.

In its second year, the Imagination Artist Series has provided Rateliff, RZA, and Campbell with unparalleled creative access to the entire orchestra, offering a blank canvas to innovate, imagine, and curate orchestral programs while sharing three unique artistic visions that will debut exclusively for Colorado Symphony audiences during in the 2023/24 season.

"As one of my favorite vocalists, it was an honor to pay tribute to Harry Nilsson’s A Little Touch of Schmilsson in the Night, with the Colorado Symphony last year” says Rateliff. “I am thrilled to announce that this coming spring I have the opportunity to honor one of my favorite songwriters - Leonard Cohen. I will be performing a selection of songs to showcase his life’s work. I am grateful to bring this show to Colorado."

One of the most fascinating and enigmatic singer/songwriters of the late '60s, Leonard Cohen developed a massive following across six decades of music-making, interrupted by various digressions into personal and creative exploration, all of which have only added to the mystique surrounding him. A master wordsmith with a voice like aged whiskey and lyrics that cut to the core of humanity, Cohen's artistry transcends generations, weaving tales of love, longing, and spirituality that continue to resonate. Denver singer and songwriter Nathaniel Rateliff joins the Colorado Symphony, blending his folk, Americana, and vintage rhythm & blues influences with Cohen’s timeless lyrics for a collaboration six decades in the making. From "Hallelujah" to "Suzanne," witness the power of songwriting to touch the deepest recesses of the soul.

Growing up in Herman, Missouri, Nathaniel Rateliff started his music career playing in his family’s band at church and music became an obsession for him and his friends. At 19, Rateliff moved to Denver where he worked night shifts at a bottle factory and a trucking company while testing out songs at open-mic nights. After playing rock music in various incarnations, Rateliff began gravitating towards a folkier sound, first captured on 2007’s Desire and Dissolving Men. In 2010 he released In Memory of Loss, a solo album on Rounder Records. In 2013 Rateliff released Falling Faster Than You Can Run on modyvi records, followed by the Closer ep, and 2020’s gorgeous And it’s Still Allright on Stax Records. Since 2015, Rateliff has also led the high-octane, horn-flanked band the Night Sweats, releasing their third album The Future in 2021. See the insightful CBS Sunday segment on Rateliff HERE.