Monthly Archives: April 1991


The performers’ parts for Bartok’s Concerto for Orchestra, on the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s music stands at the Music Center on Tuesday night, were yellowed with respectable old age. They’re entitled; this was the orchestra, after all, that gave the work its world premiere, on November 30, 1944, before these very ears. (They then belonged to […]


Mention the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, and good vibrations arise. Here is a musical organization whose very name suggests longevity (210 years, in fact), distinguished bloodlines (Felix Mendelssohn was one of its conductors) and adherence to solid, middle-class virtues. (The Gewandhaus was the home of Leipzig’s fabric merchants, and it once housed a concert hall as […]


There were only two people on the stage, and not many more in the audience, for this week’s Monday Evening Concert at the County Museum. The concert was extraordinary even so, a reunion with one of the most remarkable musical minds of our time. Gyorgy Kurtag is reasonably well known among the new-music crowd. Five […]


Suddenly, there are Estonian composers where there were none before. The past few years have seen the emergence of Estonia‚Äôs Arvo Part, whose quiet, mystical compositions have won a large following. As Wednesday night’s County Museum concert by the California EAR Unit suggested, Part is not the only man of his country worth our attention. […]


The Ardittis have done it again. Miracle workers in the cause of contemporary music, master musicians unafraid, the London-based Arditti Quartet came to town once again on Tuesday night, drawing a large (but not capacity) crowd to USC’s Bovard Auditorium, taking on a fearsome program and… Well, let’s pause there. Even the Ardittis’ splendid performance fell […]


For a few hours last Saturday morning and early afternoon, the center of Los Angeles’ musical life shifted northward from its usual downtown location to some dusty, sunbaked real estate in the Santa Clarita Valley. The occasion was “A Day in the Old West,”organized by the indefatigable MaryAnn Bonino as an event in her “Chamber […]


There were many empty seats at the Music Center at the start of Thursday night’s Los Angeles Philharmonic concert, and many more after intermission. The sounds of electronic beepers and the squeal of moribund hearing aids rang out in the vast spaces. Even after 250 years, the three-hour-plus bulk of Bach’s “St. Matthew Passion” is […]


I HAVE ART, ONE VERTICAL; WILL BRING IN THURSDAY A.M. [F/L] The music at Wednesday night’s concert by Ensemble P.A.N. (“Project Ars Nova”) may have been old in years, but it was thoroughly modern in spirit. It was, if anything. fairly aflame with the energy of its own innovation. This splendid ensemble. five singers and performers […]


Like the shock waves streaming from Dr. Mesmer’s magnets that figure in its dizzy plotline, Mozart’s “Cosi fan tutte” seems to have had a revitalizing effect on the Music Center Opera. The production, cheered to the rafters at its first performance on Monday night, represented enlightened opera at fairly close to its best: stimulating, controversial […]


Music of a poignant beauty almost beyond the reach of mere words, achieved with means so simple that they, too, disappear in the telling: that was the essence of a most extraordinary concert on Wednesday night at Saint Basil’s Church in downtown Los Angeles. The performers were Paul Hillier’s newly formed ensemble called Theater of […]