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Ford Festival Announces Season, Adding Film to Its Arts Lineup

March 24, 1999

A giant projection screen will be suspended between the two towers of the John Anson Ford Amphitheatre for five nights of film screenings this summer, one of the major expansions of the annual Summer Nights at the Ford performance series that runs from mid-June through Labor Day at the outdoor, 1,200-seat Los Angeles County facility in Hollywood.

The films to be shown include the jazz-flavored Mel Stuart-David L. Wolper "WattStax" (Aug. 4), sponsored by the International Documentary Assn. as part of the Hollywood Film Festival, plus four programs of Outfest '99 (July 15-18), the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Film Festival.

World music again dominates the Ford season, with Brazil's famed singer Caetano Veloso returning for two nights (July 3 and 4), his second local appearance in his 30-year career. The widely separated traditions of klezmer and mariachi music come together in a joint concert by Barry Fisher's Ellis Island Klezmer and Mariachi Sol de America de Juan Jose Almaguer (July 11). The summer also promises Albert Torres' Dia de San Juan Salsa Music and Dance Festival (June 26), and Nnamdi Moweta's African Village Music Festival (Aug. 8), featuring the local debut of Congolese rumba singer Madilu "System" Bialu.

In addition, the Ford will host three post-season concerts belonging to the World Festival of Sacred Music--The Americas (Oct. 15-17), a worldwide millennium event.

The record eight nights of dance offer the first programs at the Ford by Winifred Harris' Between Lines (July 10), Jacques Heim's Diavolo Dance Theatre (July 31) and Monica Favand's Trip Dance Theatre (Sept. 4), along with return engagements by the Jazz Tap Ensemble (June 27), Danza Floricanto USA (Aug. 28), the Lula Washington Dance Theatre (Aug. 21) and the JazzAntiqua Dance and Music Ensemble (Aug. 7). The Ford will again host a matinee and evening performance of the annual Dance Kaleidoscope festival (July 24).

Divided between daytime and evening performances, the classical music and opera schedule features a concert version of Mozart's "The Magic Flute" with the L.A. Mozart Orchestra (Aug. 14) and programs by the L.A. Chamber Orchestra Winds (June 13), the L.A. Baroque Orchestra (Sept. 5), the Rossetti String Quartet (June 20), the Miami String Quartet (June 27) and the I Palpiti Chamber Orchestra and Soloists (Aug. 20 and 22).

Pop music and jazz events include programs by the Jazz Bakery (Aug. 22), the Verdugo Hills Showtime Chorus (Aug. 29), "Jazz Goes to the Movies" (Aug. 13), "Bluegrass at the Ford" (Aug. 1) and the JP Nightingale daytime "Teddy Bear Picnic Parade" (July 10).

The sole play on the schedule: Shakespeare's "Much Ado About Nothing," to be given six daytime performances by the East L.A. Classic Theatre (July 31-Aug. 15).

Information: (323) 461-3673.

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