March 27, 1988 |
It is good, on the eve of his 94th birthday, at last to have a book, a whole book, by Nicolas Slonimsky and about Nicolas Slonimsky. Until now, the best reference on this wondrous, multitalented, complex, obfuscatory enfant terrible was a lengthy entry in every musician's favorite lexicographic bible, "Baker's Biographical Dictionary."
April 10, 1988
Regarding Martin Bernheimer's review of musicologist Nicolas Slonimsky's new autobiography (Book Review, March 27): An ironic note in a minor key: Slonimsky is far too discreet to mention it, but four years ago, he was one of 13 brave resisters to a callous Westwood apartment eviction. Even at age 90, under the threat of losing his home, he was still not afraid to stand up for his rights. The greedy, insensitive landlord? None other than Peter S. Bing, son of Anna Bing Arnold, the patroness saint in L.A. cultural philanthropy.
May 14, 1989
GLENN GOULD A Life and Variations by Otto Friedrich (Random House: $22.50; 446 pp.) "For those interested in the story of that remarkable musician, a fantasist bearing a bundle of inhibitions, 'A Life and Variations' proves to be a most satisfying account of this enigmatic personality."--Nicolas Slonimsky AGONY IN THE GARDEN A Stranger in Central America by Edward R. F. Sheehan (Houghton Mifflin: $19.95; 362 pp.) "A brilliant if eccentric book--truly I will never read another headline about Central America without recalling Sheehan's dreamlike images of beggar and whore, jungle fighter and privileged revolutionary, torture chamber and cathedral."
October 23, 1989 |
In his prefatory remarks to a concert of music by Mark McGurty on Friday, the venerable lexicographer Nicolas Slonimsky stated flatly that no music dictionary, not even his own, could adequately describe McGurty's music. He's probably right. But the six works by the 34-year-old Los Angeles composer heard at the Santa Monica Museum of Art did leave some strong impressions.
April 30, 1994 |
When it comes to 100-year-old hyphenates of cultural import who call Los Angeles home, Nicolas Slonimsky may well have a corner on the market. The musicologist-author-conductor-composer-provocateur-watchdog-cat lover-and-walking encyclopedia turned 100 on Wednesday and was feted with a birthday party at the Museum of Contemporary Art. While Slonimsky's frail health of late prevented him from leaving his home in West Los Angeles, the Ahmanson Auditorium was filled with his presence by proxy.
October 22, 1985 |
A bright overture, a serious centerpiece, a flashy closing and solid weight in between--what more can one ask of good programming? And when every item on an agenda is being heard for the first time, a program thus described can be very satisfying, indeed. The union of seven composers and 25 instrumentalists that calls itself Lo-Cal Composers gave such a program, beginning its second season, Sunday night in Gindi Auditorium at the University of Judaism.