VIDEO:  Carlo Maria Giulini rehearsing the LA Phil in Beethoven’s 9th Symphony
Los Angeles Philharmonic / Music News & Info: Classical

VIDEO: Carlo Maria Giulini rehearsing the LA Phil in Beethoven’s 9th Symphony

Kudos and endless gratitude to Tim Mangan for originally finding and sharing this blast from the past:  Carlo Maria Giulini rehearsing the opening of Beethoven’s 9th Symphony with the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion. According to the voice over at the beginning of the video, this was filmed during one of ten(!) … Continue reading

LA Chamber Orchestra & Benjamin Beilman dance their way through an impressive season opener
All Reviews / Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra / Music News & Info: Classical / Reviews 2013/2014

LA Chamber Orchestra & Benjamin Beilman dance their way through an impressive season opener

(Publisher’s note.  I’m thrilled to introduce the first-ever guest writer on All is Yar:  Fiona Bryan.  Fiona has a BM & MM in Violin Performance from Blair School of Music at Vanderbilt University and University of Missouri, respectively, and has performed in various orchestras across the country.  More recently, she’s been working in marketing, PR, and … Continue reading

Season enders (part 1 of 2):  Alisa Weilerstein closes LACO’s final 2012/13 concert with a flourish
All Reviews / Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra / Music News & Info: Classical / Reviews 2012/2013

Season enders (part 1 of 2): Alisa Weilerstein closes LACO’s final 2012/13 concert with a flourish

When the Piatigorsky International Cello Festival was in town last year, I managed to catch two of the three concerto performances that different soloists were performing with the Los Angeles Philharmonic.  The one I soloist I missed:  Alisa Weilerstein.  At the time, someone told me I had made a mistake.  Judging by the strength of … Continue reading

The long and short of last Thursday’s LA Phil concert with Ludovic Morlot and Emanuel Ax
All Reviews / Los Angeles Philharmonic / Music News & Info: Classical / Reviews 2012/2013

The long and short of last Thursday’s LA Phil concert with Ludovic Morlot and Emanuel Ax

Just to prove to myself that I could summarize into three bullet points my thoughts on last Thursday’s Los Angeles Philharmonic concert: Emanuel Ax played Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 25:  Spectacular.  Flawless.  Brilliant.  Dare I say, “Perfect.” Conductor Ludovic Morlot:  Solid in Dutilleux’s The Shadows of Time and Beethoven’s 5th Symphony. The orchestra:   Very good the whole night. There, I … Continue reading

Five concerts, four conductors at different stages of their relationship w/ the LA Phil (part 3 of 4):  Esa-Pekka Salonen then and now
All Reviews / Los Angeles Philharmonic / Music News & Info: Classical / Reviews 2012/2013

Five concerts, four conductors at different stages of their relationship w/ the LA Phil (part 3 of 4): Esa-Pekka Salonen then and now

When Esa-Pekka Salonen comes back to conduct the Los Angeles Philharmonic, you expect finely polished performances of complex programs.  In two weekends of concerts earlier this month, that’s exactly what you got and then some.  E-P was in town to help the orchestra celebrate Lutosławski’s centenary, with both sets of programs featuring major works by the … Continue reading

A case of musical ADD:  Andsnes and Dudamel headline latest LA Phil concert, but news of deMaine creates the biggest buzz
All Reviews / Appointments / Auditions & Appointments / Los Angeles Philharmonic / Music News & Info: Classical / Reviews 2012/2013

A case of musical ADD: Andsnes and Dudamel headline latest LA Phil concert, but news of deMaine creates the biggest buzz

The Los Angeles Philharmonic’s second week of concerts in the 2012/2013 season was clearly meant to be a contrast from the first.  After having regaled us all with a sparkling world premiere of Symphony by Steven Stucky and a romp through the modernist machinations of Stravinsky’s Le Sacre du Printemps (The Rite of Spring), Gustavo Dudamel decided … Continue reading

All Reviews / Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra / Music News & Info: Classical / Reviews 2012/2013

LA Chamber Orchestra displays its range in outstanding season opening concert

Do you have one of those friends that are good at seemingly everything they do?  You might already know that they’re like that, but when you see them in action you always have to shake your head in surprise and admiration. Jeffrey Kahane and the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra are like that. They kicked off … Continue reading

Going out with style:  Tokyo String Quartet bids a fond farewell to Chicago
All Reviews / Chicago / Music News & Info: Classical / Other classical music concerts and recitals (in So Cal and beyond) / Reviews 2011/2012 / Travel

Going out with style: Tokyo String Quartet bids a fond farewell to Chicago

This past Tuesday, the Tokyo String Quartet played what first violin Martin Beaver said would almost certainly be their last concert at the Ravinia Festival.  In all likelihood, it will also be their final appearance anywhere in the Chicago area.  With Kazuhide Isomura (founding viola)  and Kikuei Ikeda (longtime second violin) deciding to retire, the … Continue reading

Of wine and white jackets, composing women and killer whales:  the start of the 2012 Hollywood Bowl season
All Reviews / Los Angeles Philharmonic / Music News & Info: Classical / Reviews 2011/2012

Of wine and white jackets, composing women and killer whales: the start of the 2012 Hollywood Bowl season

It was time for musicians to break out their summer whites and for the audiences to try to not roll empty bottles of wine down concrete steps.  That’s right:  I’m talking about summer at the Hollywood Bowl. After a few concerts of playing back-up band to Barry Manilow, the Los Angeles Philharmonic opened the classical … Continue reading

Timeless like a broken watch:  Marino Formenti in recital
All Reviews / Music News & Info: Classical / Other classical music concerts and recitals (in So Cal and beyond) / Philharmonic Society of Orange County / Reviews 2011/2012

Timeless like a broken watch: Marino Formenti in recital

“I always hated the Diabelli Variations,” writes Marino Formenti.  Coming from any other pianist, this would sound like a confession. Marino Formenti is not “any other pianist.” The Italian-born musician only began studying Beethoven’s meandering piano work at the recent request of Dean Corey, President and Artistic Director of the Philharmonic Society of Orange County. … Continue reading

Los Angeles Philharmonic / Music News & Info: Classical

Happy Birthday, Ludwig van Beethoven

The great German composer was born on this date in 1770.  In his honor, please enjoy the iconic first movement from his Fifth Symphony, performed by the Los Angeles Philharmonic conducted by the incomparable Carlo Maria Giulini. If you typically associate Maestro Giulini with interpretations that lean towards the broad and spacious, you may be … Continue reading

Thoughts on Haitink, the New York Philharmonic, and Avery Fisher Hall
All Reviews / Music News & Info: Classical / New York / Other classical music concerts and recitals (in So Cal and beyond) / Reviews 2011/2012 / Travel

Thoughts on Haitink, the New York Philharmonic, and Avery Fisher Hall

As previously mentioned, I made a “game day decision” last Saturday night to see Bernard Haitink conduct the New York Philharmonic at Avery Fisher Hall.  Note that I listed Mr. Haitink’s name first, then the orchestra, then the hall:  chalk up the opportunity to see the legendary Dutch conductor in person for the first time … Continue reading

Los Angeles Philharmonic / Music News & Info: Classical

Orchestra programming: some are just better at it than others

After spending some time chatting on Tim Mangan’s blog about how the Pacific Symphony chose to put together its 2011-2012 season, I was reminded of a little contest that Sam Bergman and Sarah Hicks of the Minnesota Orchestra decided to hold a couple of years ago.  The concept, in short, was to “put yourself in … Continue reading