April 28, 2012 |
So what would Beethoven drive? I'm not sure that putting anyone that headstrong behind the wheel would be a great idea. He'd likely scream at his publisher on his cellphone while driving, impatiently tailgate, cut people off. He'd speed for sure and never, ever signal. But Orange County is car country and Thursday night at the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall, Joshua Bell handed over the keys of his new Porsche to the composer for a high-octane spin of his "Coriolan" Overture, Violin Concerto and Fourth Symphony.
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.
April 22, 2012 |
There's a moment each night in the "Million Dollar Quartet" stage musical when the audience sees a photo revealing that what they've just witnessed on stage -- a rock fan's dream meeting of Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl Perkins -- was no figment of a writer's fertile imagination but a hard and happy fact of history. "There are audible gasps every night," said Colin Escott, the veteran pop music historian and writer. Escott wrote the book for the show that premiered in 2006 and comes to the Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa from Tuesday to May 6 ahead of a run at the Pantages Theatre in Hollywood from June 19 to July 1. The proof exists not just in that celebrated photo taken at Sam Phillips' Sun Records label in Memphis but also in the recordings Phillips was savvy enough to make while the foursome was hanging out, chatting and playing for a couple of hours on Dec. 4, 1956.
February 15, 2012 |
Craig Phillips was barely beyond toddling when he asked his mother to take him to the organ loft at their Baptist church in Nashville. "I was fascinated by the sheer size and power you have at your fingertips," Phillips said of the immense Schantz pipe instrument. Since then, he has pulled out all the stops on a career devoted to music. This week the American Guild of Organists bestows on Phillips, music director and organist at All Saints' Church in Beverly Hills, its distinguished composer award for 2012.
December 1, 2011 |
— On a recent afternoon of rehearsals for his new musical, "Some Lovers," Burt Bacharach looks nothing like the hip, handsome, nattily dressed composer of an extraordinary run of pop hits in the 1960s and '70s, written with lyricist Hal David. Instead of the stylish sweaters, crisp turtlenecks, meticulously creased slacks and cut blazers he was known for, Bacharach is outfitted in a gray sweatsuit, white socks and silver running shoes. On this day he is dressed for one thing: work.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 4, 2011
Sid Melton Character actor in dozens of TV, film projects Sid Melton, 94, a character actor perhaps best known for his roles in the hit television shows "Green Acres" and "The Danny Thomas Show," died of pneumonia Wednesday at Providence St. Joseph Medical Center in Burbank, his family said. During a career that spanned nearly 60 years, Melton appeared in about 140 television and film projects. They included two 1951 movies, "Lost Continent" with Cesar Romero and the Samuel Fuller-directed "The Steel Helmet," and 1972's "Lady Sings the Blues" with Diana Ross.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 18, 2011 |
Pete Rugolo , an award-winning composer and arranger who came to prominence in the world of jazz as the chief arranger for Stan Kenton's post-World War II band and later wrote the themes for TV's "The Fugitive" and "Run for Your Life," has died. He was 95. Rugolo, who also had a recording career with his own band, died Sunday of age-related causes at a nursing facility in Sherman Oaks,said his daughter, Gina Rugolo Judd. "Pete Rugolo's passing is a notable event, as he was a true and powerful original, whose music made an invaluable contribution to a very rich period in American music," composer John Williams said in a statement to The Times on Monday.
June 20, 2011 |
Julie Taymor has directed Hollywood movies, won an Emmy Award for an opera production, and earned two Tonys for "The Lion King," one of Broadway's biggest and most lucrative musicals ever. But her artistic roots lie deep in avant-garde and experimental theater. So when the original director and co-creator of "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark" spoke Saturday afternoon in Los Angeles before hundreds of theater professionals, the event had the feel of a homecoming, or a reunion of artistic kinfolk.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 27, 2011
Poly Styrene Singer in the punk band X-Ray Spex Poly Styrene, 53, the braces-wearing singer who belted out "Oh bondage, up yours!" with the punk band X-Ray Spex, died Monday, according to a statement on her website . Styrene, whose real name was Marion Elliott-Said, was in hospice care in St. Leonards-on-Sea, England, after having been diagnosed with cancer. X-Ray Spex released just one album, 1978's "Germ Free Adolescents. " But its aggressively catchy single "Oh Bondage, Up Yours!"
March 10, 2011 |
In the biggest changes yet to the troubled Broadway musical "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark," its producers announced Wednesday that director Julie Taymor will be stepping down from her daily responsibilities with the production. They also postponed its official opening for the sixth time, to an unspecified day "in early summer. " Taking Taymor's place is Philip William McKinley, whose only Broadway credit is the 2003 musical "The Boy From Oz," which starred Hugh Jackman. "Spider-Man," which began preview performances Nov. 28 at the Foxwoods Theatre in New York, has been plagued by production delays, cast injuries and a spiraling budget that, at $65 million, makes it the most expensive show in Broadway history.