By Robert D. Thomas
Pasadena Star-News/San Gabriel Valley Tribune/Whittier Daily
Each Thursday morning, I list five events that pique my
interest, including (ideally) at least one with free admission (or, at a minimum,
inexpensive tickets). Because of the holidays, this will be my last “Five Spot”
post until January 4, although I do plan on posting columns and other items
over the next three weeks.
Here’s today’s grouping:
Tonight at 8 p.m.
at Walt Disney Concert Hall
The San Francisco-based, all-male chorus makes what has
become an annual visit to Disney Hall. This is one of those must-see concerts,
particularly if you’ve never seen this group. Information: www.laphil.com
Tomorrow at 11 a.m.,
Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. at Walt Disney Concert Hall
Philharmonic: Bernard Labadie, conductor
The Qubec native, who is founding director of Les Violons
du Roy and La Chapelle du Qubec, is considered a Mozart specialist so his
all-Mozart program this weekend with the L.A. Phil plays to his strength. It
includes Symphony No. 41 (Jupiter) and
Piano Concerto No. 27, K. 595, with Benedetto Lupo as soloist. These were the
last symphony and last piano concerto that Mozart wrote. David Mermelstein had
a profile of Labadie in yesterday’s Los
Angeles Times (LINK). Information: www.laphil.com
Saturday at 8 p.m.
and Sunday at 3 p.m. at Alex Theatre, Glendale
Gay Men’s Chorus of
Los Angeles holiday program
The 200-voice chorus will perform an eclectic program of
music under the banner of “Naughty and Nice,” led by its new artistic director,
E. Jason Armstrong, and feature Melissa Manchester as soloist. Information: www.gmcla.org
Sunday at 4 p.m. at
Neighborhood Church, Pasadena
Pasadena Pro Musica:
Christmas Madrigal Music
Music Director Stephen Grimm leads his chorus in a program
of music from the Renaissance. Information:
Note: I would
have listed the Los Angeles Master Chorale’s performance of Handel’s Messiah on Sunday at Disney Hall but the
LAMC Web site says it’s sold out (although a cancellation list is available).
And the weekend’s
“free admission” program …
It isn’t this weekend and it isn’t a program in the strict
sense, but on December 24, set your alarm clock for 7 a.m. (West Coast time)
for the worldwide broadcast of A Festival
of Nine Lessons and Carols live from King’s College, Cambridge, England
(locally, it’s on KUSC 91.5-FM and www.kusc.org). Begun in 1918 and first broadcast 10 years later, this
traditional service features scripture readings, carols and choir anthems that
tell the story of Jesus from creation to his birth. Since 1982, the service has
featured a commissioned carol; this year, it’s Christmas Eve, with words by Christina Rossetti and music by young
British composer Tansy Davies (here’s a LINK to the news release about the new
You can get voluminous details about the service, including
its history, HERE. You can also download the service booklet as a .pdf file but
be forewarned: it’s 50 pages long! The entire service takes about 90 minutes
and it’s one of my holiday traditions (a visit to the service itself has long
been on my “bucket list”).
(c) Copyright 2011, Robert D. Thomas. All rights reserved.
Portions may be quoted with attribution.