November 12, 2012 |
Composers of serious concert music who also write for film and television are usually greeted with skepticism, much like novelists who write screenplays. Benjamin Wallfisch is a 33-year-old English composer and conductor who is credited with orchestrating and conducting Dario Marianelli's 2008 Oscar-winning score for "Atonement. " Since then, Wallfisch's own career as a movie composer has taken off. But Wallfisch, who conducted the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra on Sunday at UCLA's Royce Hall in the premiere of his Violin Concerto (along with works by Elgar and Beethoven)
October 9, 2012 |
An orchestra of many moving parts, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra does not have a home. Besides its main orchestral series, it has a Westside chamber series, a Baroque series downtown and five fall exclusive foodie fundraisers in classy homes around town. But that orchestral series, given on Saturday nights at the Alex Theatre in Glendale and Sunday nights in Royce Hall at UCLA, is LACO's real bread and butter. This season's opener, which I heard at Royce, was a showcase program, itself made up of many moving parts, within which there were more moving parts.
September 22, 2012 |
BROOKLYN, N.Y. - Inside his airy loft last week, Andrew Norman was nervous as he talked about his childhood and God. The 32-year-old composer, a finalist this year for the Pulitzer Prize in music, spoke in anxious halts and starts about his upbringing in "a strict religious environment" in Modesto, where his father is a pastor at an evangelical church. Norman was tense because he rarely spoke about his personal life and wasn't quite sure what to say. And since he had left home as a teenager to study music at USC, he had wrestled with his faith, an inner conflict heard in his music, notably his searing, Pulitzer-nominated work for violin, viola and cello, "The Companion Guide to Rome," a portrait of nine churches and saints.
May 19, 2012 |
Though Carl Davis has composed scores for such films as 1981's "The French Lieutenant's Woman," over the past three decades, he's become one of silent cinema's greatest champions, composing and conducting scores for countless silent films as well as orchestrating existing scores for such silents as Charlie Chaplin's 1931 masterwork"City Lights. " In March, the U.S.-born, London-based composer earned kudos for conducting the 46-piece Oakland East Bay Symphony in his score for the restored 5 1/2-hour version of Abel Gance's 1927 epic "Napoleon.
May 19, 2012
The 23rd Annual Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra Silent Film Gala Where: Royce Hall, UCLA When: 6: 30 p.m. Sunday Tickets: $35, $50 Information: http://www.laco.org , (213) 622-7001, Ext. 1
April 23, 2012 |
Gabriel Kahane, best known as an indie singer-songwriter, was his own charismatic singer-songwriter Saturday night in the West Coast premiere of his affecting "Crane Palimpsest" at the Alex Theatre. As he does in a club, he used a microphone and wore jeans. He accompanied himself on guitar and piano. He also had the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra on hand, and he gratefully used everything at his disposal to merge pop and new music sensibilities naturally and unpretentiously. Composer-performers who write orchestral pieces for themselves as soloists can these days be anything they like.