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Peter Lieberson

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February 11, 2007 | Mark Swed, Times Staff Writer
HERE we go again. Tonight the Grammys will announce, or at least whisper surreptitiously offstage to a hardly panting press or public, the 2006 classical awards. They won't mean much. The Grammys have long suffered a classical credibility gap. The days of know-nothing voters and the Atlanta Symphony block-voting itself honor after honor are long gone. The Grammys' tiresome fixation with Georg Solti died with the Hungarian conductor's death in 1997.
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ENTERTAINMENT
September 9, 2013 | By Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times Music Critic
In the world of postmodern opera production, setting "Carmen" on a cruise ship or "La Bohème" on a submarine is no longer considered eccentric. Stage directors are paid to come up with concepts. And so for his Long Beach Opera production of Peter Lieberson's "King Gesar" on Saturday night, Andreas Mitisek had both the Queen Mary and a submarine docked in front of it. His backdrop was the Long Beach skyline. He even included the sounds of Long Beach's beloved Lobster Festival wafting over the bay. What was unusual, though, was that this was no concept.
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ENTERTAINMENT
May 23, 2005 | Mark Swed, Times Staff Writer
"If your eyes were not the color of the moon," the Chilean poet Pablo Neruda wrote in one of a hundred sonnets to his third wife, Matilde Urrutia, "if you were not that bread the fragrant moon kneads, sprinkling flour across the sky, oh my dearest, I could not love you so!"
ENTERTAINMENT
February 11, 2007 | Mark Swed, Times Staff Writer
HERE we go again. Tonight the Grammys will announce, or at least whisper surreptitiously offstage to a hardly panting press or public, the 2006 classical awards. They won't mean much. The Grammys have long suffered a classical credibility gap. The days of know-nothing voters and the Atlanta Symphony block-voting itself honor after honor are long gone. The Grammys' tiresome fixation with Georg Solti died with the Hungarian conductor's death in 1997.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 25, 2005 | Mark Swed, Times Staff Writer
"Grace" has several meanings. It can denote the quality of pleasing, a refinement of movement or expression, the conferral of favor on another and, of course, thanks or thanksgiving. In music, we have the grace note, that little dancing embellishment that delays, ever so slightly, the main note and makes its arrival all the more a pleasure.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 28, 1997 | MARK SWED, TIMES MUSIC CRITIC
We don't, in the West, have much experience with kings like Ashoka Maurya. A ferocious warrior in the 3rd century BC, Ashoka conquered all of India. But instead of the usual napoleonic instance of power so terribly corrupting, Ashoka underwent in battle a profound transformation of character. He renounced worldly goods, preached the pacifist teachings of Buddha and turned his attention to developing laws of justice and to building schools, libraries and hospitals for his great kingdom.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 9, 2013 | By Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times Music Critic
In the world of postmodern opera production, setting "Carmen" on a cruise ship or "La Bohème" on a submarine is no longer considered eccentric. Stage directors are paid to come up with concepts. And so for his Long Beach Opera production of Peter Lieberson's "King Gesar" on Saturday night, Andreas Mitisek had both the Queen Mary and a submarine docked in front of it. His backdrop was the Long Beach skyline. He even included the sounds of Long Beach's beloved Lobster Festival wafting over the bay. What was unusual, though, was that this was no concept.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 21, 2005 | Scott Timberg, Times Staff Writer
Composer Peter Lieberson seems so good-natured, so serenely at peace with himself, it would not be surprising if this tanned meditation enthusiast with the sharp cheekbones and winning smile began to spontaneously levitate as he discusses his latest work. Lieberson, who lives in Santa Fe, N.M., is in town for this weekend's premiere of "Neruda Songs," his setting of five love sonnets by the Chilean poet Pablo Neruda.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 4, 2007 | From a Times staff writer
"Neruda Songs," a song cycle that Peter Lieberson composed on a commission from the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the Boston Symphony, has won the $200,000 University of Louisville Grawemeyer Award for Music Composition. The songs are based on five poems by Chilean poet Pablo Neruda. Lieberson wrote them for his wife, mezzo-soprano Lorraine Hunt Lieberson, who died of cancer in 2006.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 12, 2013 | By Mark Swed, Music Critic
The late American composer Peter Lieberson imagined he was creating a campfire opera, a Tibetan Buddhist legend told by a narrator, who recites, scats and sings, backed by a small instrumental ensemble in front of an audience happily eating and drinking. It was no campfire when premiered in Munich and repeated at Tanglewood two decades ago, not with cellist Yo-Yo Ma and pianists Peter Serkin and Emanuel Ax in the glamorous lineup.   These days, officials don't, of course, cotton to campfires on the beach, but Long Beach Opera has found a grassy knoll next to the Queen Mary, water and the Long Beach skyline in the background where at least an ersatz fire can be part of the stage.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 25, 2005 | Mark Swed, Times Staff Writer
"Grace" has several meanings. It can denote the quality of pleasing, a refinement of movement or expression, the conferral of favor on another and, of course, thanks or thanksgiving. In music, we have the grace note, that little dancing embellishment that delays, ever so slightly, the main note and makes its arrival all the more a pleasure.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 23, 2005 | Mark Swed, Times Staff Writer
"If your eyes were not the color of the moon," the Chilean poet Pablo Neruda wrote in one of a hundred sonnets to his third wife, Matilde Urrutia, "if you were not that bread the fragrant moon kneads, sprinkling flour across the sky, oh my dearest, I could not love you so!"
ENTERTAINMENT
May 21, 2005 | Scott Timberg, Times Staff Writer
Composer Peter Lieberson seems so good-natured, so serenely at peace with himself, it would not be surprising if this tanned meditation enthusiast with the sharp cheekbones and winning smile began to spontaneously levitate as he discusses his latest work. Lieberson, who lives in Santa Fe, N.M., is in town for this weekend's premiere of "Neruda Songs," his setting of five love sonnets by the Chilean poet Pablo Neruda.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 28, 1997 | MARK SWED, TIMES MUSIC CRITIC
We don't, in the West, have much experience with kings like Ashoka Maurya. A ferocious warrior in the 3rd century BC, Ashoka conquered all of India. But instead of the usual napoleonic instance of power so terribly corrupting, Ashoka underwent in battle a profound transformation of character. He renounced worldly goods, preached the pacifist teachings of Buddha and turned his attention to developing laws of justice and to building schools, libraries and hospitals for his great kingdom.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 24, 1997 | DANIEL CARIAGA, TIMES MUSIC WRITER
"King Gesar" is the first opera in Peter Lieberson's so-called Tibetan Buddhist "Ring" cycle; the second will be "Ashoka's Dream," set to receive its first performances at Santa Fe Opera this summer. "Gesar," a 55-minute instrumental octet with narrator, has been dubbed by its composer a campfire opera, perhaps because it is a series of heroic tales regarding Gesar of Ling, moral fables suitable for outdoor, under-the-stars retelling.
NEWS
May 19, 2005
Los Angeles Philharmonic "First Nights" concerts are designed to re-create the bustle of events around the first performances of works that later became classics. But sometimes a "First Night" program actually is a premiere of a contem- porary work, with the audience getting a chance to hear a living composer talk about the music first. Peter Lieberson gets the "First Nights" treatment Friday when his "Neruda Songs" are played by the Philharmonic directed by Esa-Pekka Salonen.
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