Category Archives: Daily News

A selection of articles written for the Los Angeles Daily News

CLASSCOL

The news is not all bad. Over the usual sour coffee and sweet rolls last week, the Los Angeles Philharmonic announced its upcoming season with something close to justifiable pride. It begins to look as if we have a music director once again. (Bet you’d forgotten, by the way, that Esa-Pekka Salonen is not the […]

CLASSCOL

The mastery in “Kullervo” extends from the work itself — the words and music by Aulis Sallinen — to the splendor of the production at the Music Center. However strange Peter Hemmings’ gamble may have appeared, when he announced in 1990 that his own Music Center Opera planned to sponsor the world premiere of a […]

CLASSCOL

It took about ten notes, sung by the Helsinki University Choir at the Music Center, at the start of last week’s Philharmonic concert, to remind us of what is sadly missing in the musical life of Los Angeles, and of most American cities for that matter. Here was a chorus, with a tradition of excellence […]

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Memories of last Wednesday’s unspeakable weather were handily dispelled that night at the Music Center, in the spell of enchantment cast by Barbara Hendricks. When did we last hear, anywhere in town, a program of pure art song — no operatic arias, no empty vocal showpieces — so handsomely delivered? Four years ago, by Peter […]

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The notion of a cultural entente between Los Angeles and Helsinki may seem somewhat far-fetched, but it seems to be working. Evidence is easily at hand this month, as the shadow of Kullervo falls upon the Music Center. This week (Friday and Saturday nights and next Sunday afternoon) Esa-Pekka Salonen, a deputation of his fellow […]

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When the roster of Los Angeles culture heroes is next compiled, the name of Lynn Harrell will figure close to the top. The smiling cellist, New York-born but of tall, blond Texas stock, has been a part of the local scene since he moved here in the 1980s. He has taught a generation of young […]

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The curtain went up on the Music Center Opera’s new production of Bizet’s “Carmen,” which began its five-performance run on Wednesday night. There, on the empty stage, stood the Carmen, a figure in whom beauty and menace were equally merged. Since Bizet’s opera actually doesn’t bring the Carmen on until some 25 minutes of scene-setting […]

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These haven’t been very good weeks at the Philharmonic. Two of the orchestra’s former leaders have been around as guest conductors, presenting new evidence as to why not to mourn their absence from our midst. Zubin Mehta’s visit ended earlier this month with a wad of Beethoven, including the Violin Concerto with Pinchas Zukerman and the […]

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In Tokyo last Tuesday night, a crowd of nearly 3,000 clapped and cheered and went joyously mad after a concert by a visiting American orchestra. Another crowd of similar size had done the same on Monday, and on each of three days before that. No previous American conquest of Japan (of which there have been […]

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[*] STEVE: This comes in early because I’m off to Japan next week, (leaving Sunday 12/29) along with the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra for its concerts in Osaka (New Year’s Eve) and Tokyo. We get back on January 8, so my column for the 12th will be a report on the tour (Jon knows about this). […]