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Jorge Mester

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ENTERTAINMENT
November 11, 1999 | ROBIN RAUZI
* Music director of the Pasadena Symphony, which plays Saturday at 8 p.m. at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium. Mester is also the music director of the Orquesta Filarmonica de la Ciudad de Mexico in Mexico City. International excursion: If I didn't have a rehearsal or concert on Friday night, I would go down to Alhambra and check out some of those little restaurants--Chinese, Vietnamese, even Muslim Chinese food. You basically feel like you're in Hong Kong.
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ENTERTAINMENT
November 2, 2013 | By Mike Boehm
David Lockington will debut Saturday as the Pasadena Symphony's music director, attended by the usual glowing sentiments that come with arrivals and beginnings. But in a 30-year career as a conductor that has been full of comings and goings crisscrossing the United States, it's noteworthy that some of the London-raised Lockington's biggest raves have come as he took a final bow and walked out the door. He's taking over the Pasadena Symphony after what amounted to 21/2 years of serial dating by the orchestra as it brought in a series of guest conductors after a messy parting with longtime music director Jorge Mester in mid-2010.
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ENTERTAINMENT
January 16, 1989 | JOHN HENKEN
Orchestral razzle-dazzle was the order of the evening Saturday at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium. For the second Pasadena Symphony concert of the season, music director Jorge Mester picked a slate of big works--and did them in a big way. The climax was Stravinsky's "Firebird," not the familiar suite, but the complete ballet score. Mester approached it as a tone poem, with due respect for its kinetic aspects and an emphasis on dramatic extremes.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 8, 2013 | By David Ng
The Pasadena Symphony said Friday that it has named the British-born conductor David Lockington as its new music director. Lockington, the music director of the Grand Rapids Symphony in Michigan, will start his new job next season. This will be Pasadena Symphony's first music director since the abrupt departure in 2010 of Jorge Mester, who led the group for nearly 25 years. In the interim, the orchestra has relied on guest conductors. The symphony also is naming Nicholas McGegan, a Baroque specialist who is also from Britain, as the principal guest conductor of the orchestra.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 19, 1988 | LIBBY SLATE
Internationally known conductors are not usually found playing in orchestras that provide background music for TV. But not long ago Jorge Mester decided to do just that when composer David McHugh asked him to play viola for a TV series scoring session.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 20, 1990 | DANIEL CARIAGA
Raised in Los Angeles, trained here and at Juilliard, and for more than 30 years a commuter on the New York City/Aspen axis, conductor Jorge Mester recently took a completely new direction in his musical life: Last month, he accepted the post of chief conductor of the West Australian Symphony Orchestra (WASO) in Perth. His three-year appointment begins in January, 1991. Perth? Westernmost city in that antipodal continent? More than 19 hours away by airplane from Los Angeles?
ENTERTAINMENT
February 4, 1995 | DANIEL CARIAGA, TIMES MUSIC WRITER
"I'm looking for steady employment," says conductor Jorge Mester. No way. Only a lifelong overachiever like Mester--whose name is inextricably bound up in the recent histories of the Juilliard School, the Aspen Festival, the Louisville Orchestra and, for the last 11 years, the Pasadena Symphony--can get away with joking about "steady employment."
ENTERTAINMENT
May 25, 2010 | By David Ng and Mike Boehm, Los Angeles Times
The abrupt departure of conductor Jorge Mester from the Pasadena Symphony Orchestra two weeks ago came as a shock to many of the company's musicians and faithful concertgoers. Now a rift has formed between the orchestra's upper management and its players on allegations that company leaders haven't been honest about the circumstances behind the longtime conductor's departure. While the company says Mester quit, his representative says he was fired. What seems clear is that Mester, who has been music director for 25 years, is well-liked by the symphony's loyal subscriber base, but is caught at a time when the orchestra is trying to attract new audiences and dig itself out of the budgetary hole it's been in after the financially troubled Pasadena Symphony and Pops merged in 2007.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 4, 2003
New gig: Jorge Mester has been named music director of the Naples Philharmonic Orchestra, starting in fall 2004. He'll continue as music director at the Pasadena Symphony.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 16, 1989
Mezzo-soprano Kimball Wheeler has canceled her appearance with the Pacific Symphony July 4 at the Irvine Meadows Amphitheatre because of illness, an orchestra spokesman said Thursday. As a result, the vocal selections originally announced have been dropped from the program. In their place will be "Four Dance Episodes" from Copland's "Rodeo" and an excerpt from Rodgers and Hammerstein's "Carousel." Otherwise, the program, to be led by Jorge Mester, will be as announced: Gershwin's "Rhapsody in Blue," with pianist Patricia Jennings; the Overture to Bernstein's "Candide"; Sousa marches, and a fireworks display.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 8, 2013 | By Sherry Stern
James DePreist, the conductor and educator who had been artistic advisor for  Pasadena Symphony and Pops since 2010, died on Friday at 76. DePreist died at his home in Scottsdale, Ariz., of complications from a heart attack he suffered last spring. In 2005, DePreist received America's highest artistic honor, the National Medal of Arts, from President George W. Bush. He was a nephew of the great contralto Marian Anderson. PHOTOS: Arts & culture by The Times DePreist, who contracted polio in 1962, conducted from a wheelchair.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 8, 2013 | By Elaine Woo, Los Angeles Times
James DePreist, artistic advisor to the Pasadena Symphony and Pops and one of the few African American conductors to lead major orchestras in the United States and abroad, died Friday at his home in Scottsdale, Ariz. He was 76. The cause was complications of a heart attack he had last spring, said his manager, Jason Bagdade. DePreist overcame polio in his 20s to pursue a conducting career that took him to stages from Sweden to Japan over four decades. His longest and most distinguished tenure was with the Oregon Symphony, where he was music director from 1980 to 2003, a period when that orchestra gained national and international renown.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 14, 2013 | By Richard S. Ginell
The beat goes on at the Pasadena Symphony as the venerable orchestra continues to search for a new music director, evidently in no particular hurry since the post became vacant in May 2010. The New York City-born Tito Munoz, 29, is one of the contenders; apparently management and the players liked what they saw in 2011 and invited him back for a second look Saturday at Ambassador Auditorium. Last time, Munoz was impressively expressive in Elgar's “Enigma Variations”; this time he again did his best work of the afternoon in the large-scale post-intermission offering, Brahms' Symphony No. 1. His beat was clear and strong, his conception thick in texture yet mobile, moving along with solid rhythm and a good sense of how the crucial climaxes should be shaped.  In the Sibelius Violin Concerto, guest violinist Caroline Goulding had the talent and technique to surmount whatever Sibelius threw in her path.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 25, 2010 | By David Ng and Mike Boehm, Los Angeles Times
The abrupt departure of conductor Jorge Mester from the Pasadena Symphony Orchestra two weeks ago came as a shock to many of the company's musicians and faithful concertgoers. Now a rift has formed between the orchestra's upper management and its players on allegations that company leaders haven't been honest about the circumstances behind the longtime conductor's departure. While the company says Mester quit, his representative says he was fired. What seems clear is that Mester, who has been music director for 25 years, is well-liked by the symphony's loyal subscriber base, but is caught at a time when the orchestra is trying to attract new audiences and dig itself out of the budgetary hole it's been in after the financially troubled Pasadena Symphony and Pops merged in 2007.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 2, 2006 | Chris Pasles
Pasadena Symphony music director Jorge Mester, who already conducts the Naples (Fla.) Philharmonic, will helm yet another ensemble, the Louisville Orchestra, beginning in 2007. Mester previously led the Louisville Orchestra from 1967 to 1979 and will guest conduct the orchestra in late September, then lead it in six programs during the 2007-08 season. His new appointment will not affect his eight-date annual commitment in Pasadena, according to board president Linda Krantz.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 4, 2003
New gig: Jorge Mester has been named music director of the Naples Philharmonic Orchestra, starting in fall 2004. He'll continue as music director at the Pasadena Symphony.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 29, 1991 | GREGG WAGER
Late Romantic Russian music brought this season of the Pasadena Symphony to a close Saturday night in Pasadena Civic Auditorium. Conductor Jorge Mester admirably led a compact program of well-known Rachmaninoff and Tchaikovsky works. The appearance of English pianist Moura Lympany gave the event a special edge. In her more than 50-year career, she has concentrated on the piano music of Rachmaninoff, with several excellent recordings that hold their own to this day.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 2, 2006 | Chris Pasles
Pasadena Symphony music director Jorge Mester, who already conducts the Naples (Fla.) Philharmonic, will helm yet another ensemble, the Louisville Orchestra, beginning in 2007. Mester previously led the Louisville Orchestra from 1967 to 1979 and will guest conduct the orchestra in late September, then lead it in six programs during the 2007-08 season. His new appointment will not affect his eight-date annual commitment in Pasadena, according to board president Linda Krantz.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 12, 2003 | Chris Pasles, Times Staff Writer
Violinist Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg commands more than her instrument. She commands the stage, making an entrance as if she can barely wait to play and shifting from foot to foot almost nervously during orchestral passages until she can take up the violin and play again. She was the soloist in Barber's Violin Concerto on Saturday in the Pasadena Civic Auditorium as the Pasadena Symphony under Jorge Mester closed the orchestra's 75th season.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 10, 2003 | Chris Pasles, Times Staff Writer
By land and by sea, Jorge Mester and the Pasadena Symphony took the audience on fascinating journeys of the imagination Saturday at Pasadena Civic Auditorium. Peter Schickele's Symphony No. 1, "Songlines," was the journey over land, while Rimsky-Korsakov's "Scheherazade" launched its series of stories on a great depiction of the sea. Composed in 1995, "Song- lines" is an often wondrous three-movement symphony of ambitious scope.
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