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May 24, 1989 | MARTIN BERNHEIMER, Times Music Critic
Do we really have to play Name the Next Conductor? It is such a silly game. Yes, yes. We know. It is the favorite pastime these days in newspaper offices, concert-hall foyers, board rooms, dressing rooms and upscale parlors throughout the nation, probably throughout the world. Still, it isn't particularly useful or productive. The subject is simply too subjective, the outcome too speculative. And anyhow, our crystal ball is both scratchy and cloudy. OK. OK. Stop twisting our arm. We don't want to be different.
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ENTERTAINMENT
April 25, 2014 | By Richard S. Ginell
Violinist Gil Shaham's career has been taking some very intriguing left turns lately. He came up with a terrific programming idea recently, recording as many of the worthy violin concertos written in the 1930s as he can lay his Stradivarius on -  the standards and the obscurities - for his own label, Canary Classics. There is also a curious new item where, in recognition of “research” on classical music's alleged repellent effect on teenagers, Shaham slapped together some excerpts from his recordings and packaged them in a CD with the title “Music to Drive Away Loiterers.” Of course, it was released on April Fools' Day.  All of this brainstorming seems to have invigorated Shaham.
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ENTERTAINMENT
July 26, 2008
Bowl change: Pianist Andre Watts, who was scheduled to perform with the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl next Thursday, has canceled because of tendinitis in his left forearm, the orchestra said. He will be replaced by Peter Jablonski.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 18, 2014 | By Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times Music Critic
Los Angeles' two greatest cultural disappointments of the past three decades may have been the failure of the Olympic Arts Festival in 1984 to mount director Robert Wilson's eight-hour international operatic epic, "the CIVIL warS" and the Music Center's inadequate support in 2000 of Frank Gehry's grand plan to renovate and urbanize the facility and reshape downtown's civic center in the process. All, though, is not lost. As part of Minimalist Jukebox on Thursday night, the Los Angeles Philharmonic reunited those two transformative artistic visions by presenting Philip Glass' contribution to "the CIVIL warS," known as the Rome section, in Gehry's successful contribution to the Music Center, Walt Disney Concert Hall.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 9, 2008 | Chris Pasles
Carrie Dennis, principal viola of the Berlin Philharmonic, has been named principal viola of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, beginning in September. A native of Saratoga Springs, N.Y., Dennis, 30, studied at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia. She served as assistant principal viola of the Philadelphia Orchestra from 2002 to 2006, when she joined the Berlin Philharmonic. -- -- Chris Pasles
ENTERTAINMENT
May 10, 2008 | Chris Pasles
Pianist Pierre-Laurent Aimard has canceled his appearances with the Los Angeles Philharmonic next Thursday through Sunday at Walt Disney Concert Hall on doctor's orders because of back strain. Peter Serkin will fill in with a slight change in program. Replacing Janacek's Capriccio for Piano Left Hand and Winds will be Messiaen's "Petites esquisses d'oiseaux" (Small Sketches of Birds) for piano solo. The remainder of the program, to be conducted by Christoph von Dohnanyi, will be the same: Messiaen's "Oiseaux exotiques" (Exotic Birds)
ENTERTAINMENT
November 20, 1994 | Mark Swed, Mark Swed is a free-lance writer based in New York. and
The Los Angeles Philharmonic comes to Lincoln Center's Avery Fisher Hall next week, its first visit to New York in four years and its first trip here with its music director, Esa-Pekka Salonen. Once more, the orchestra joins the great New York musical jostle for recognition. The parade of orchestras visiting New York this season has already included the Boston Symphony and the Philadelphia Orchestra (both of which offer short seasons here), the Pittsburgh Symphony, the St. Louis Symphony, the Houston Symphony, Orchestre Symphonique de Montreal, along with orchestras from St. Petersburg, London, Osaka, Weimar, Wales and Slovakia.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 9, 1989
T here is some choice, but not much, in what violinists are asked to play on their audition tapes and at the ensuing live audition for the Los Angeles Philharmonic. In both cases, applicants get to play a portion--either all or part of the first movement--from any of the following concerti: Mendelssohn Beethoven Brahms Prokofiev No. 2 Bartok No. 2 Sibelius Tchaikovsky The rest of the format is set in stone. Each violinist must play the following music : ON TAPE: Brahms' Symphony No. 4, second movement: Play from measure 88 to 102 Schumann's Symphony No. 2, Scherzo: Play from the beginning to measure 50 Strauss' "Don Juan," play from the beginning to the 14th measure after letter C LIVE: The first and second movements of Mozart's Concerto No. 3 in G major, No. 4 in D major, or No. 5 in A major.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 6, 2008 | MARK SWED, MUSIC CRITIC
A story John Cage liked to tell involved his teacher of Zen Buddhism, D.T. Suzuki: "Before studying Zen, men are men and mountains are mountains. While studying Zen, things become confused. After studying Zen, men are men and mountains are mountains. "After telling this, Dr. Suzuki was asked, what is the difference between before and after. He said, 'No difference. Only the feet are a little bit off the ground.' " Thursday night Gustavo Dudamel conducted the Los Angeles Philharmonic in Richard Strauss' "Alpine Symphony" at Walt Disney Concert Hall.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 14, 2009 | MARK SWED, MUSIC CRITIC
There are wildly popular pianists (Lang Lang), beloved pianists (Emanuel Ax), deeply admired pianists (Pierre-Laurent Aimard) and charismatic wizards of the keyboard (Marino Formenti). And then there is Martha Argerich. She is our pianist of allure. She doesn't come our way often, but when she does, well, it's almost always all about Martha. Thursday night, she played Ravel's Piano Concerto in G with the Los Angeles Philharmonic at Walt Disney Concert Hall, and it was mostly about Martha.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 14, 2014 | By Mike Boehm
A 42-year-old member of a choral group from Philadelphia died late Monday morning while warming up for a noon rehearsal at Walt Disney Concert Hall - the first time a performer has died at the venue since its 2003 opening. Jeff Dinsmore and seven other members of the Crossing chamber choir had arrived early for the session at Choral Hall, a rehearsal room at Disney Hall, when Dinsmore was taken ill, said Lisa Bellamore, a spokeswoman for the Los Angeles Philharmonic. A fire department spokesman said he was pronounced dead after emergency responders arrived.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 10, 2014 | By Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times Music Critic
Minimalism, the musical version, has always been a numbers game. It began with extended tones, with beats added and subtracted to phrases at will and with simple rhythms played in and out of phase to create complex patterns. So let's have some numbers for the Los Angeles Philharmonic's extraordinary Green Umbrella marathon Tuesday night at Walt Disney Concert Hall, part of the orchestra's Minimalist Jukebox Festival. The concert lasted five hours if you count a pre-concert discussion and a pre-concert performance.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 8, 2014 | By Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times Music Critic
"This primitivistic music goes on and on," the prescient San Francisco Chronicle music and art critic Alfred Frankenstein wrote in his 1964 review of the premiere of Terry Riley's "In C. " "At times you feel you have never done anything all your life long but listen to this music and as if that is all there is or ever will be, but it is altogether absorbing, exciting, and moving, too," he continued. Saturday afternoon, in a special installation/performance at the Hammer Museum that helped kick off the first full weekend of the Los Angeles Philharmonic's Minimalist Jukebox festival, this primitivistic music went on and on for four hours.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 31, 2014 | By Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times Music Critic
Before there was Minimalism there was Post-Minimalism. That might seem hardly feasible if you put your trust in time being an irreversible process. Theoretical physics, however, allows for a more open future in which the concepts of past and present become malleable. With the advent of Minimalism in music 50 years ago, young composers cleaned the slate with basic chords, simple melodic formulas, a beat and, most of all, a salute to repetition. All that was off-limits in the Modernist musical revolution set off a half-century earlier.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 12, 2014 | By Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times Music Critic
BERKELEY - The Vienna Philharmonic is an orchestra that has always been gripped by as well as in the grip of history - the history of Western music, of which it has played a significant part, and the history of Vienna, of which it has also played a significant part. Now "Confronting the Past," has become an official project of the orchestra. In mannerly Viennese fashion, what the orchestra really means is confronting its past. That is what it did in a special residency as part of the UC Berkeley Cal Performances' series that included three concerts in Zellerbach Hall along with a two-day symposium examining the orchestra's history from the outbreak of World War I to the present.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 10, 2014 | By David Ng
Esa-Pekka Salonen, the former music director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, has won the prestigious Michael Ludwig Nemmers Prize in Music Composition, a biennial award from Northwestern University that honors a contemporary composer's body of work. Salonen is receiving a $100,000 cash award and will have one of his works performed by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in the 2015-16 season, the university announced Monday. The Finnish composer-conductor also will partner with Northwestern's Henry and Leigh Bienen School of Music, where he will participate in four residencies on the Northwestern campus in the next two academic years.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 13, 2009 | Randy Lewis
Death Cab for Cutie's Ben Gibbard usually doesn't go in much for guest appearances. "It's very rare that we've invited people into the inner circle," Gibbard said in a recent interview. "There's nothing wrong with doing that. Some people love to have 15 guests on their album and make the recording session a big party where everybody's singing backup or playing guitar. We've never been that band." The Bellingham, Wash., quartet, however, made a sizable exception July 5 during its sold-out concert at the Hollywood Bowl, bringing what Gibbard introduced to the crowd as "our 50 new best friends" onstage in the form of the Los Angeles Philharmonic.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 15, 2009
Los Angeles Philharmonic Where: Walt Disney Concert Hall, 111 S. Grand Ave., Los Angeles When: 8 p.m. Thursday and Friday, 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday Price: $42 to $160 Contact: (323) 850-2000 or www.laphil.com
ENTERTAINMENT
March 8, 2014 | By Reed Johnson
In his classic tome "The Rest Is Noise: Listening to the Twentieth Century," critic Alex Ross compares Minimalism to driving a car "across empty desert, the layered repetitions in the music mirroring the changes that the eye perceives - road signs flashing by, a mountain range shifting on the horizon, a pedal point of asphalt underneath. " Think of the Los Angeles Philharmonic's Minimalist Jukebox festival, then, as a Mojave roadside diner where the menu changes constantly and there's always some unexpected disc spinning hypnotically on the turntable: John Adams' "Naive and Sentimental Music," Steve Reich's "Vermont Counterpoint" or perhaps "Autobahn," the robotic road-trip chamber work by post-human electro-pioneers Kraftwerk.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 7, 2014 | By Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times Music Critic
John Corigliano wrote his Symphony No. 1 in 1988 on a grand scale for an extravagant-sized orchestra. It is a multi-colored score containing a patchwork quilt of immense emotions. The composer didn't call it a war symphony, but that is what it is, an epic orchestral score for an epic tragedy, the AIDS epidemic. Audiences and orchestras, devastated by what the disease had wrought, understood. The symphony was needed, appreciated and widely played. The urgency of those times is receding into memory, and Corigliano's score is not so much heard any longer.
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