March 25, 2013 |
The morning commute was like any other - almost. As cars flew by on the northbound 710, I hit "play" on my iPod and a melody swept over me. Rush hour melted away. "Ah-vey, ah-vey, veh-room corrrr-pooose," the choir began. The Latin words open "Ave Verum Corpus" (Hail true body), a choral composition that has captivated listeners for more than two centuries. I sang along, and I wasn't doing it alone. At that moment, two friends in New Jersey and Georgia were singing the words as well.
March 8, 2013 |
Spring is, as always, a season for festivals. The big one in Los Angeles this year is the ongoing celebration of the centenary of Benjamin Britten's birth, initiated by Los Angeles Opera. The Los Angeles Philharmonic's weeklong Brooklyn Festival in April is an investigation into how the New York City borough has become a hot spot for young composers. But while festivals take up a lot of the oxygen on the performing arts calendars, there is much else: Christian Wolff As a teen in the early 1950s, Wolff was taken under John Cage's wing and soon became a prominent member of Cage's New York School.
February 22, 2013 |
As it did last season, the Pacific Symphony tried to fill the gap left by the demise of Opera Pacific with a helping of semi-staged opera Thursday night in Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall. Once again, the choice was extremely safe and popular - Puccini's “Tosca.” Once again, there was a playful attempt to involve the audience beyond the usual program notes, with handouts in the lobby elaborately detailing choices that Tosca makes...
June 1, 2012 |
Since its premiere in 1824, Beethoven's Ninth Symphony has been used to celebrate major historical events such as the opening of the United Nations and the fall of the Berlin Wall. But it works just as well for personal ones, including birthdays and anniversaries. Pacific Symphony conductor Carl St.Clair celebrates his 60th birthday this week, and John Alexander marks his 40th anniversary as artistic director of the Pacific Chorale. On Thursday, those organizations gave a stirring account of the Ninth at the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall in Costa Mesa.
May 18, 2012 |
The Pacific Symphony performs music for an unlikely audience -- gamers battling the hellish underworlds of Diablo III. The symphony teamed up with Irvine-based game developer Blizzard Entertainment, known for the Warcraft and Starcraft franchises, for the long-awaited third installment in the Diablo series. More than 100 musicians recorded the score live last July in Costa Mesa's Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall under the baton of Eímear Noone. “It was important to give Diablo III its own sound - - not only via the compositions, but even in the manner in which it was recorded,” Blizzard Entertainment's audio director Russell Brower said in a news release about the project.
May 10, 2012 |
“The Wendy Williams Show” 11 a.m. Thursday, Fox: Broadway: actress Audra McDonald. “Open Call” 9 p.m. Thursday, KCET: Live at the Ford-Grandeza Mexicana: Hosted by mezzo-soprano opera singer Suzanna Guzman, Open Call features a wide variety of productions from profiles of artists. “Gospel Music Presents: Great Performances” 10 a.m. Saturday, CBS: Shirley Murdock performs with guests Regina Belle, Beverly Crawford and Kelly Price. From Fort Mill, S.C. “Louis CK: Live at the Beacon Theatre” 10 p.m. Saturday, FX: “Great Performances at the Met” 1 a.m. Saturday, KVCR: "Madama Butterfly": Patrick Summers conducts Puccini's tale of a Japanese geisha betrayed by an American lover.
May 1, 2012 |
It wasn't the words of Shakespeare that sprang to mind Monday night as I found myself sitting onstage at the $240-million Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall in Costa Mesa, surrounded by members of the Pacific Symphony, my trusty clarinet in my lap, the score to Prokofiev's "Romeo and Juliet" ballet music laid out before me and music director Carl St.Clair wielding his baton in front of us. No, it was the immortal question posed by Talking...
April 30, 2012 |
The new season at the Soka Performing Arts Center in Orange County will feature appearances by the Warsaw Philharmonic, Academy of St. Martin in the Fields and Vancouver Symphony, as well as by pianists Jeremy Denk and Joyce Yang, and cellist Alisa Weilerstein. The venue, which is the newest classical hall in Southern California, opened last year at Soka University in Aliso Viejo. The 2012-13 season is set to begin in September. Soka's symphony series will include the Warsaw Philharmonic, with pianist Yulianna Avdeeva (Nov.
April 24, 2012
The L.A. Philharmonic announced that conductor Christoph König will be stepping in for a run of local concerts scheduled through this weekend in place of Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos, who was forced to cancel because of illness. The performance will mark the Walt Disney Concert Hall debut for the German-born König, who performed with the Pacific Symphony this year. In addition to the Disney dates, he will return to Orange County in a Saturday night performance with the L.A. Phil at the Renée & Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall.