Gustavo is America and You Can Too

Like the best summer tomatoes, Thursday night's LA Philharmonic concert at the Hollywood Bowl was one to savor. Of the six performances conducted by Gustavo Dudamel at the Bowl this year, this was certainly the musician's concert of the bunch. No superstar soloists, like Yo-Yo Ma or Plácido Domingo, and a 12-tone piano concerto to … Continue reading Gustavo is America and You Can Too

A Conversation With Gustavo Dudamel: “Classical Music Really Is Changing”

Tens of thousands of classical music fans have been streaming to the Hollywood Bowl this week as LA Philharmonic music director Gustavo Dudamel has set up shop there for his annual summer residency. And the crowds are only expected to get larger in the week ahead, as Dudamel conducts a concert performance of Verdi’s opera … Continue reading A Conversation With Gustavo Dudamel: “Classical Music Really Is Changing”

LA Phil/KUSC Hollywood Bowl Broadcasts

I'm proud to announce this summer's roster of radio broadcasts of the LA Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl. Concerts will air in their entirety, Saturday afternoons at 2:00, beginning August 11th on Classical KUSC. Yours truly hosts. Some of the series highlights for me: -every classical concert conducted by Gustavo Dudamel -Edgar Meyer's new Double … Continue reading LA Phil/KUSC Hollywood Bowl Broadcasts

Ace of Bass: A Conversation with Edgar Meyer

Tomorrow marks the second performance for Joshua Bell and Edgar Meyer with the LA Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl. On Monday, I caught up with Bell at the Bowl. Today, I met Meyer in West Hollywood for a conversation about his new Double Concerto. The Nashville-based double-bassist is a leading performer in lots of different … Continue reading Ace of Bass: A Conversation with Edgar Meyer

Bell of the Bowl: A Conversation with Joshua Bell

Superstar violinist Joshua Bell is in town this week for two marathon performances at the Hollywood Bowl. I say marathon, not because the concerts will be extra long--there's curfew at the Bowl, after all--but because the program includes not one, but TWO concerti featuring Bell as soloist. From the standard repertoire, the Mendelssohn e-minor Violin … Continue reading Bell of the Bowl: A Conversation with Joshua Bell

You Must Hear This: A Human-Ape Hybrid & Drowning Witches

Two very different recordings came out this week that I highly recommend. I previously wrote about both of them for The Music Issue of the very cool lit-quarterly The Aviary. More of my summer music picks are posted there, as well as those of such writerly folks as Amy Gerstler, Katy Henriksen, Mathias Svalina, and … Continue reading You Must Hear This: A Human-Ape Hybrid & Drowning Witches

A Gospel of Social Justice: The Premiere of John Adams’ “The Other Mary”

If it walks like a Passion and talks like a Passion, chances are it's a Passion. But composer John Adams chose not call his most recent work, The Gospel According to the Other Mary, a Passion. "I just avoided using the word 'Passion,'" Adams told me earlier this week in a conversation backstage at Walt … Continue reading A Gospel of Social Justice: The Premiere of John Adams’ “The Other Mary”

A Conversation with John Adams: “I’m not sure what art does.”

The world premiere of The Gospel According to the Other Mary, by John Adams, takes place tonight. Gustavo Dudamel conducting the LA Philharmonic, LA Master Chorale, and soloists in this evening-length oratorio (135 minutes, in two acts) about the final days of Jesus' life. Yesterday, I had the opportunity to sit down with John Adams, … Continue reading A Conversation with John Adams: “I’m not sure what art does.”

A Very Gehry Don Giovanni

Even before the overture started at last night's LA Philharmonic performance of Mozart's Don Giovanni, it was clear this wasn't going to be Gustavo Dudamel's Don Giovanni. The 31-year-old music director seemed quite pleased to be taking a back seat to Walt Disney Concert Hall architect Frank Gehry, who created the sets for the production, … Continue reading A Very Gehry Don Giovanni