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Kent Nagano

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ENTERTAINMENT
May 18, 2009 | MARK SWED, MUSIC CRITIC
Kent Nagano, who now commutes between the Montreal Symphony and the Bavarian State Opera in Munich, Germany, has been a rare visitor to Southern California since ending his tenure as Los Angeles Opera music director three years ago. But Saturday night he appeared at the Broad Stage in Santa Monica with a handful of Montreal Symphony players, two Inuit throat singers and a bassoon-playing bear. First the orchestra's second associate concertmaster, Marianne Dugal, gave a labored solo performance of the Chaconne from Bach's D-Minor Violin Partita.
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ENTERTAINMENT
July 25, 2013 | By Mark Swed, Music Critic
When California native Kent Nagano resigned as the first music director of the newest major American opera company, Los Angeles Opera, in 2006 to become general music director of Bavarian State Opera, he entered into an Old World operatic hornet's nest. Now after seven rocky and never uneventful seasons -- which have included magnificent triumphs such as his recent “Ring” cycle -- he departs at the end of the month to move to Hamburg State Opera in 2015. Nagano's last new production for Munich is typically daring: a “Boris Godunov,” directed by Calitxo Bieto, the baddest of bad boy European opera directors (famous for sex, gore and degradation and for having required a men's chorus in Verdi's “Un Ballo in Maschera” to sing in toilet stalls with their pants down)
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ENTERTAINMENT
August 30, 2012 | By David Ng
Conducting titles at the world's top orchestras are often convoluted and mystifying. In the case of Sweden's Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra, a newly announced leadership change is baffling even by classical standards. For five years, Gustavo Dudamel has led the Gothenburg Symphony as its principal conductor. With his term set to expire this year, the orchestra said on Thursday that Dudamel is stepping down from that position and is assuming the role of "honorary conductor. " The orchestra said it has named Kent Nagano as principal guest conductor and artistic advisor. Nagano's role as artistic advisor begins immediately, said the orchestra.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 8, 2013 | By David Ng
Kent Nagano's tenure at the Montreal Symphony Orchestra appears uncertain following reports that the American conductor will depart the orchestra when his current contract as music director expires in 2016. But the orchestra's management has vigorously denied the reports. A report this month from Montreal's La Presse stated that Nagano's contract with the orchestra won't be renewed beyond 2016. The report, written by Claude Gingras, cites sources saying that Zarin Mehta is helping the orchestra find Nagano's successor.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 8, 1994 | MARTIN BERNHEIMER, TIMES MUSIC CRITIC
The ads heralded "A British Celebration" at Hollywood Bowl. And that, after a fashion, is what the 7,979 customers got Tuesday night. Sitting in for the L.A. Philharmonic was the Halle Orchestra, a decidedly distinguished ensemble from Manchester. The evening began with our national anthem, followed by "God Save the Queen," which many in the sing-along crowd mistook for "My Country, 'tis of Thee."
ENTERTAINMENT
May 16, 2003 | Christopher Reynolds, Times Staff Writer
In a move that underlines Placido Domingo's status as top dog at the Los Angeles Opera while drawing conductor Kent Nagano closer to the organization, opera officials Thursday unveiled a new set of job titles and contract extensions among their key creative and administrative personnel. The change dubs Domingo general director, a step up from the artistic director title the celebrated tenor has held since 2000.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 18, 1995 | BENJAMIN EPSTEIN, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Which is more exciting: an opera with elaborate sets, costumes and plenty of dramatic action? Or a concert version of the same opera, without sets or costumes, and where the principals barely move? In some cases, including Bela Bartok's "Bluebeard's Castle" (A Kekszakallu Herceg Vara), the answer is not as easy as it would seem.
NEWS
June 8, 1995 | JOSEF WOODARD, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
The Ojai Festival mounts its annual three-day musical celebration this weekend in Ojai's humble but legendary Libbey Bowl. The festival is, without question, Ventura County's claim to fame in the international music world, as evidenced by this year's French-leaning program, which was designed by noted conductor Kent Nagano, who is bringing along his Lyon Opera Orchestra. This year's festival looks to be a strong one, suitably fortified with French repertoire.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 18, 2000 | MARK SWED, Mark Swed is The Times' music critic
Three years ago, a small piece of the Berlin Wall was given to Loyola Marymount University by the city of Berlin. Dutch novelist Cees Nooteboom was at its unveiling and writes in the current issue of the journal Grand Street that "the historical object stood there like an orphan without an orphanage."
ENTERTAINMENT
July 21, 2007 | Mark Swed, Times Staff Writer
The posters of Kent Nagano on the side of the Bavarian State Opera are curious. One is a severe close-up of his face, pores and all, unsmiling, stern. Another is the same shot with "Hier bin ich gern" plastered over him in blocky red letters, like war paint. It translates: "I'm glad to be here." He may not look it, but in fact he is. The company is, at present, midway through its annual Opera Festival, which began at the end of June and runs through July.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 30, 2012 | By David Ng
Conducting titles at the world's top orchestras are often convoluted and mystifying. In the case of Sweden's Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra, a newly announced leadership change is baffling even by classical standards. For five years, Gustavo Dudamel has led the Gothenburg Symphony as its principal conductor. With his term set to expire this year, the orchestra said on Thursday that Dudamel is stepping down from that position and is assuming the role of "honorary conductor. " The orchestra said it has named Kent Nagano as principal guest conductor and artistic advisor. Nagano's role as artistic advisor begins immediately, said the orchestra.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 7, 2010
James Patterson's publishing company says that he's the first author to exceed 1 million sales in electronic book delivery. The Hachette Book Group says Patterson has moved 1.14 million units of his books for devices like Kindle and the iPad. The big seller, by far, is the most recent: Patterson's novel "I, Alex Cross," which was published both electronically and in hardcover last fall. Since his first novel in 1976, Patterson's books have sold more than 205 million copies. There's no third-party monitor of e-book sales, so Hachette used its own figures and checked other prominent authors.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 18, 2009 | MARK SWED, MUSIC CRITIC
Kent Nagano, who now commutes between the Montreal Symphony and the Bavarian State Opera in Munich, Germany, has been a rare visitor to Southern California since ending his tenure as Los Angeles Opera music director three years ago. But Saturday night he appeared at the Broad Stage in Santa Monica with a handful of Montreal Symphony players, two Inuit throat singers and a bassoon-playing bear. First the orchestra's second associate concertmaster, Marianne Dugal, gave a labored solo performance of the Chaconne from Bach's D-Minor Violin Partita.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 21, 2007 | Mark Swed, Times Staff Writer
The posters of Kent Nagano on the side of the Bavarian State Opera are curious. One is a severe close-up of his face, pores and all, unsmiling, stern. Another is the same shot with "Hier bin ich gern" plastered over him in blocky red letters, like war paint. It translates: "I'm glad to be here." He may not look it, but in fact he is. The company is, at present, midway through its annual Opera Festival, which began at the end of June and runs through July.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 8, 2006 | Diane Haithman
Kent Nagano, who is leaving his post as music director of Los Angeles Opera to become music director of both the Bavarian State Opera in Munich and the Montreal Symphony, is not the only L.A. Opera veteran headed for Munich.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 27, 2006 | Mark Swed, Times Staff Writer
I doubt that many who attend "The Marriage of Figaro" know exactly what is going on at all points in its screwball plot. Yet Saturday night at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, when Los Angeles Opera brought back its perfectly likable 2004 production of Mozart's opera, I noticed something unusual. As the situation on stage got more confusing, heads in the audience began bobbing less.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 16, 2001 | MARK SWED, Mark Swed is The Times' music critic
Putting an opera on stage is always tense; putting on new and unusual opera especially so. The Los Angeles Opera plans at least one such new work a season from now on. It intends to create the most ambitious production ever of that most ambitious cycle of operas ever--Wagner's "Ring." And the company also wants to become everybody's opera company, alert to its Hollywood home base and the Southland's Latino and Asian populations as well. The potential for jittery chaos in all this is tremendous.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 4, 1994 | Mark Swed, Mark Swed is a free-lance writer based in New York
Everything about the performance seemed natural, confident, vibrant, at the British premiere of John Adams' Violin Concerto recently given by the London Symphony Orchestra. Of course, there were backstage tensions. The composer, himself a conductor, later confessed that the desire to conduct his own music has become so strong that he had to hold his arm down like Dr. Strangelove.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 12, 2005 | Mark Swed
EXPLAINING his reason for including three composers in his project to create a narrative symphonic work about the experiences of Japanese Americans in the World War II internment camp Manzanar -- a work he conducted at UCLA this month -- Kent Nagano told The Times that he felt the context was broad. There were many stories to relate, he well knew, his parents and grandparents having been among those interned, and he liked the idea of more than one musical point of view.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 29, 2005 | Mark Swed, Times Staff Writer
It is not easy to find the UC Santa Cruz Music Center without help, and it is not easy to find help. And maybe that is as it should be. The performance at the University's Music Hall three weeks ago was billed as a "preview of the world premiere" of a symphonic work, "Manzanar: An American Story" -- a work that will be performed again Thursday night at UCLA. This is not an easy subject. This has not been an easy project.
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