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Cliburn at the Bowl

July 16, 1994

Monday was supposed to be an experience of a lifetime, and it turned out to be a deadly one!

After weeks of planning and phoning (Did you ever try reaching the Hollywood Bowl box office?), I was taking my grandson to his first classical concert; $58 later, plus $13 for parking, we were subjected to a mediocre rendition of Tchaikovsky's Piano Concerto No. 1 in B-flat and an intermission that took longer than the playing. We were then "treated" to a four-piece encore by Van Cliburn that was as lightheaded as Cliburn's physical condition.

When I tried to get a refund, I was told the World Cup had total responsibility and to contact them. Then I read in The Times that the Bowl would not refund any money as we had heard "a full concert that went beyond intermission" ("Van Cliburn to Continue Tour; No Refunds for Bowl Patrons," July 13).

As I score it:

Hollywood Bowl: 0

World Cup Soccer: 0

My grandson and me: -$71

'Tain't fair.

NANCY LEE FREED

Los Angeles

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