Monthly Archives: April 2003

Fizzle, Puzzle, Dazzle

Gerald Levinson’s Five Fires wasted the Philharmonic’s time (and mine) two weeks ago with the same bag of aimless sound effects that afflicted his Second Symphony here eight years ago – shorter this time but no less distasteful. Both works, in fact, were apparently cut from the same cloth – or, to drag in a […]

Exalted, Exultant, Exhausted

Three unchallenged masterworks, each over 250 years old, serve civilization as the musical translation of the essence of humanness. On successive evenings over one weekend early this month, all three – the St. John and St. Matthew Passions of J.S. Bach, the Messiah of George Frideric Handel – filled and consecrated the air at UCLA’s […]

Iannis and the Big Bang

Iannis Xenakis’ Persephassa went zooming around the inner space of Zipper Hall the other night, and for the length of that journey – half an hour, give or take – it obliged me to believe that music couldn’t get any better. The fresh air on Grand Avenue, and the gleam of Frank Gehry’s nascent monster […]

The Dutchman De-Spooked

Photo by Robert Millard To the accusers of deprivation in the ranks of ardent Wagnerians, the Los Angeles Opera throws a small bone now and then, the current offering being The Flying Dutchman, which runs through April 12. The shortest and goofiest score in the Wagner canon, its hints of later mastery mingled with a […]