August 17, 2008 |
The FIRST vocal lines of young composer Nico Muhly’s new album, "Mothertongue," consist of a seemingly arbitrary list of numbers and addresses. Sung by mezzo-soprano Abigail Fischer over aching strings and a distorted sub-bass synthesizer, the arrangement feels like a Stockhausen gag; a misdirection that subverts your expectations about how the work might move you. For Muhly, however, there's poetry in all that data. "If you ask someone to name all the phone numbers you can off the top of your head, it's going to be pretty interesting," the Manhattanite said.
October 24, 2009 |
As he was the leader of the Los Angeles Philharmonic for 17 years, there are some who probably expected former music director Esa-Pekka Salonen, 51, to be sitting front and center when his successor, 28-year-old Venezuelan Gustavo Dudamel, stepped up to the podium for his inaugural concerts earlier this month at the Hollywood Bowl and Walt Disney Concert Hall. But that's not Salonen's style. During a recent telephone chat, Salonen, who stepped down from the post largely to pursue his passion for composing and now holds the title of the Philharmonic's first conductor laureate, talked about why he was conspicuously absent from the hoopla.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 20, 2008 |
Bob Florence, a pianist, arranger, composer and bandleader who won a Grammy and two Emmy awards in a career reaching back to the late '50s, died Thursday at Barlow Respiratory Hospital in Los Angeles after a lengthy bout with pneumonia. He was 75. Although his schedule of activities was cut back a few months ago because of his illness, he had remained active, leading his Bob Florence Limited Edition big band in October and writing composing commissions from the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, the International Assn.
September 5, 1987 |
Morton Feldman, an expressionistic composer who gloried in his iconoclasm as he both irritated and intrigued audiences with esoteric exercises in form and melody, died Thursday of cancer. He was 61 and had been in a hospital in Buffalo, N.Y., near the State University of Buffalo where he had taught for the last 15 years. Although based in New York most of his life, Feldman taught across the country, primarily at conservatories and colleges where his works normally were performed.
February 16, 1999 |
John A. "Jaki" Byard, eclectic jazz pianist, composer and teacher who recorded with such luminaries as Charles Mingus and Rahasaan Roland Kirk, has been found shot to death. He was 76. Byard was shot in the head Thursday in his home in Queens, N.Y., which he shared with his two daughters. The family said no shots were heard, and a police investigation is continuing. His life and his music paralleled the evolution of jazz.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 9, 2002 |
Shony Alex Braun, 70, Holocaust survivor, violinist and composer who wrote a "Symphony of the Holocaust," died Friday in Los Angeles of pneumonia. Born in Transylvania, Braun was interned as a teenager by the Nazis at Auschwitz and Dachau and survived a bullet wound. A historical account of Braun's experiences, and those of his wife, Shari, have been included in the archives of the Wexner Learning Center of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington.