April 27, 2012 |
If all had gone as planned, Rafael Fruhbeck de Burgos would have led an all-Spanish first half at Walt Disney Concert Hall Thursday night. But the eminent Spanish conductor was forced to cancel his appearances due to illness last week -- and into the gap stepped young, tall Christoph Konig in what suddenly became his Los Angeles Philharmonic debut. He kept one Spanish piece --Pepe Romero's vehicle, Joaquin Rodrigo's "Concierto de Aranjuez" -- and swapped the other for Dvorák's Scherzo Capriccioso, while closing as previously scheduled with Brahms' Symphony No. 2. Konig, who hails from Dresden and holds posts in Portugal and Luxembourg, employed vigorous circular motions with his right arm, and seemed to be most effective when cranking up the tempos into overdrive. Although he didn't quite find the lilt of the infectious tune in the Dvorák, the revved-up coda got some attention. The Brahms symphony went by in a young man's rush; the pell-mell conclusion was played as if it were the end of Tchaikovsky's Fourth.
July 19, 2010 |
Before taking the stage of the Gibson Amphitheatre on Friday night, the pop-mariachi- ranchera singer Pepe Aguilar was preceded by giant video projections of swirling Mexican flags, tolling liberty bells and the stern countenances of Emiliano Zapata, Pancho Villa and José María Morelos. A heavy-handed patriotic display? Not really. This year marks both the bicentennial of Mexico's war of independence from Spain and the 100th anniversary of the Mexican Revolution. Few contemporary Mexican American artists express pride in that cultural heritage more fervently than this Texas-born son of the Mexican singer, film star and all-around pop-culture idol Antonio Aguilar . Now in his early 40s, Pepe Aguilar has been performing since his parents brought him on tour as a toddler.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 30, 2010 |
Authorities in Ventura County on Monday said the arrest of an alleged heroin kingpin in Mexico was triggered by a local investigation that has made a significant dent in the area drug market. Described by Mexican officials as "the king of heroin," Jose Antonio Medina Arreguin, 36, was apprehended last week. He is said to have smuggled 440 pounds of heroin monthly into California for at least three years, stashing most of it in secret compartments built into automobiles. Mexican narcotics officials said his operation brought in about $12 million a month.
October 26, 2009 |
A blunt-talking former guerrilla seeking to maintain the left's hold on power in Uruguay easily got the most votes in presidential elections Sunday, but failed to win the majority needed to avoid a runoff. Jose "Pepe" Mujica received about 48% of the votes compared with 30% for former President Luis Alberto Lacalle, a free-marketeer who wants to cut government and taxes and reduce alliances with Latin American leftists. Two voter initiatives -- one to remove amnesty for human rights abuses under the 1973-85 dictatorship and another to enable mail-in votes by citizens living outside Uruguay -- also failed to win majorities, according to exit polls by the companies Cifra, Factum and Equipos Mori.
July 15, 2009 |
The government-ordered killing of a hippopotamus that escaped from the ranch once owned by the late drug kingpin Pablo Escobar has raised an outcry among Colombian animal rights groups. The hippo, nicknamed Pepe, was killed last month near the town of Puerto Berrio, about 100 miles northwest of Bogota. An environmental agency in Antioquia state ordered the hippo killed as a health risk and menace to farmers and fishermen, and the national Environment Ministry approved the killing.
October 2, 2006 |
At one point during Friday's festive concert by Mexican singer Pepe Aguilar at the Gibson Amphitheatre, I felt moved to pull out my cellphone and call my wife, who was home with a cold. For a moment, I held it open so she could catch even a distorted snippet of the singer's thrilling set, backed by his terrific Mariachi Zacatecano. That may seem silly, but great mariachi music has that effect. It makes you want to reach out and touch someone.