Adieus… et bonjours!


Vocal focus from CCMN*

Lauri D. Goldenhersh’s
Weekly Highlights

June tends to contain a lot of farewells, as seasons comes to a close, school lets out for the summer, and all sorts of people leave the usual behind in search of a little vacation adventure.  The next two weeks are fraught with grand finales, including:

ANGELES CHORALE welcomes back erstwhile director DONALD NEUEN on Saturday night for ‘The Faith of Beethoven‘, combining with the UCLA Chorale and UCLA Philharmonia for Ludwig’s C Major Mass, Choral Fantasia (Op. 80) and his “Hallelujah Chorus” from Mount of Olives.  The event celebrates the extraordinary achievements of one of classical music most brilliant composers, as well as Neuen’s long and influential career, as the conductor is about to retire.  We wish Don all the very best in his new (and hopefully slightly more peaceful) phase, and encourage you to catch this mammoth performance at Royce Hall.  Get tickets asap, as they’ve been selling like hotcakes.  Click for details

CHORALE BEL CANTO and CLAREMONT CHORALE join forces on Saturday and Sunday for “America Sings“, featuring soloists JANAI BRUGGER and RALPH CATO in a program of favorites from our most beloved 20th-century composers:  Randall Thompson, Aaron Copland and George Gershwin.  Cato’s powerful baritone is well-known for appearances all over the area, and Brugger is particularly memorable for her jaw-dropping performance as Pamina in LA OPERA’s Magic Flute last fall.  What a treat!  Two performances are in Claremont and Downey, respectively, and this family-friendly program just feels like summer.  Get tickets and more info

Also wrapping up their seasons are PACIFIC SYMPHONY (Carmina Burana starts tonight, so we covered that last week); PASADENA MASTER CHORALE (with “Carmina’s” smaller-scale chamber version); ANGEL CITY CHORALE, with an evocative program called simply “Elements“; PASADENA PRO MUSICA, with “Mozart & Memories“; and the LOS ANGELES MASTER CHORALE, who offer a hello rather than goodbye, with “Today, Tomorrow and Beyond“.  (Their director, GRANT GERSHON, recently agreed to a contract extension through the 2019-2020 season, so they have plenty of future planning to do!)

Prefer the stage?

New operas are opening this week from three regional companies, with Tosca from REPERTORY OPERA COMPANY; Madama Butterfly from CENTER STAGE OPERA; and Don Giovanni from LOS ANGELES METROPOLITAN OPERA.  The popular Opera Cafe returns to Westwood on Sunday night, with organizer GALE OLIVER leading an operatic “open mic” with soirée style.  Catch these and more on the calendar.


Thais — LA Opera — thru 6/7 (last chance!)
SONGFEST free concerts at the Colburn School — thru 6/27
The Gondoliers — Sierra Madre Playhouse, thru 6/21

You know the drill:  there’s much more to be had on the calendar, and that’s especially true in a busy week like this.  Whether you’re a performer, a fan or a curious newbie, try something new this week.  But as always, thank you for supporting live singing!

Lauri D. Goldenhersh

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*This post echoed from Lauri’s 6/5/14 column in the Clickable Chamber Music Newsletter. The original is a text-based email newsletter, and images, links and details may differ here.

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