In the LA Times this morning, LA Philharmonic president and CEO Deborah Borda said, “We've got the youngest audience in America, but it's got to get younger.” The LA Phil’s new 2014-15 season—just announced today—is a concerted and concrete effort to that end.
Recently, the orchestra has conducted research that has shown that cultural consumers who have not purchased LA Phil tickets are interested in an educational component or experience affiliated with the concert. The LA Phil’s research found that 25% of new ticket buyers felt that they didn’t know enough about classical music to fully enjoy it or even which concerts they would like.
Enter "in/SIGHT." A new multimedia series that pairs new work by prominent video artists, like Refik Anadol and Finn Ross, with major works from classical composers, including Berlioz’ Romeo and Juliet, Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis, Unsuk Chin’s Alice in Wonderland and Steve Reich’sThree Tales.
Today, LA Opera announced its 2014-15 season. Six productions; 41 performances, including the season-opener which features the two company directors in collaboration: General Director Plácido Domingo singing the role of Giogio Germont in Verdi’s La Traviata, with Music Director James Conlon conducting. Opposite Domingo as Violetta, will be an LA Opera regular: soprano Nino Machaidze.
Fans of LA Opera’s recent production of Mozart’s The Magic Flute (count me among them!) will be pleased to see Barrie Kosky’s name on the schedule. Two operas will get Kosky’s innovative touch: a double bill of Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas and Bartók’s Bluebeard’s Castle. When can I buy my tickets?
2014-15 will also mark the return of the music of Daniel Catán. The late composer had a long history with LA Opera, and the company will present Catán’s Florencia en el Amazonas in the fall.
Beyond the mainstage series, LA Opera will also present ...
(Originally posted June 3, 2009)
Tuesday June 2nd was another birthday for Sir Edward Elgar, not to mention Mikhail I Glinka, Johnny Weissmuller, Henry VIII, Marvin Hamlisch and the Marquis de Sade. June 2nd is also my birthday and has been for as long as I can remember.
Several months ago I was asked by the Mira Costa High School to emcee their orchestras’ debut performances at Walt Disney Concert Hall on June 2nd.
Since Marcia was busy taking care of year-end craziness in her job as a school administrator, I decided “Why not?” So I dutifully showed up at Disney Hall at 7 for the 7:30 concert by the four ensembles to be featured. Since there would be a lot of stage changes, rearranging things for ensembles ranging from a nonet to the combined forces of the Symphony Orchestra and String Orchestra, I was on stage quite a bit, ...
For what it's worth, I actually like that Mariah Carey Christmas song. I know I'll take some heat for that, but whatever, I don't really care. It's a well-crafted pop song (if that's possible), which doesn't sound dated (it's nearly 20 years old) like most pop music does after like two weeks. Side note: Mariah Carey could live off the "All I Want For Christmas is You" royalties alone.
It's impossible to chart worldwide royalty numbers, but it is the best-selling Christmas single of all time (12 million copies) on the best-selling Christmas album of all time (more than 15 million copies), and in Great Britain alone, Carey is projected to rake in close to $750,000 this year for that one song. But if all you want for Christmas is a little more substance in your Christmas music, then this blog's for you. Below are 12 pieces of classical Christmas music ...
The LA Opera recently invited reporters on a unique backstage tour of Falstaff, focusing on the real food made for the show and consumed live on stage. Here's Arts Alive's Sheila Tepper with Hallie Dufresne on the food masks she created on aprons and brooms for the show, LA Opera Prop Master Allen Tate on his secret for a turkey that will bring the house down and mezzo-soprano Ronnita Nicole Miller on singing with your mouth full.
Italian soprano Carmen Giannattasio was a food blogger for several years in Italy.
Verdi's Falstaff runs through December 1 at LA Opera. For tickets and more information, click here.
photo courtesy Susie Goodman
To varying degrees and at different times, “film” has been a dirty word among the classical community, and film composers scoffed at as muzak creators, plagiarists, or second-tier hacks. Composers who devote their energies to scoring films have either fought for acceptance among their concert hall colleagues—by defending the integrity of their scores or penning their own concert music—or resigned themselves to the low opinion of the other side.
And while “film music” is much too broad an umbrella to make completely general statements, the fact is that film score commissions are just another collaborative, work-for-hire application of talent descended from the opera, the ballet, and the court. Some of the music written for film has reached the sublime, not only ingraining itself in the pop culture consciousness, but now and then ascending to the heights of all-time musical achievement. By programming music written by six prominent film composers (John Williams, ...
It’s a heady time for opera in Los Angeles. Next weekend, LA Opera presents Verdi’s Falstaff (through Dec. 1) conducted by James Conlon and starring Roberto Frontali as Shakespeare’s most lovable bumbling boozer; in the realm of new opera, Invisible Cities, the Industry’s runaway success at Union Station, is playing to sell-out crowds, and has actually added performances. Long Beach Opera is continuing its typically adventurous season with a real hidden treasure: Duke Ellington’s only opera, Queenie-Pie, coming in January.
Meanwhile, for those of you who would like to just dip a toe into this repertoire I’ve come to adore, and can’t ever get enough of, there’s intimate, affordable staged opera, courtesy of a relatively new community opera group called LA Metropolitan. Yes, they show chutzpah in their very name as well as the rep: they’re performing staged productions of Verdi’s Il Trovatore this weekend and next just west of ...