AROUND TOWN/MUSIC: Summertime is winding down

By Robert D. Thomas

Music Critic

Pasadena Star-News/San Gabriel Valley Tribune/Whittier Daily
News

This article was first
published today in the above papers.

 

Summer seasons are winding down and by the time of my next
column, fall/winter/spring (i.e., indoor) seasons will be upon us. However,
there are still a couple of outdoor events worth noting.

 

The Pasadena Pops
concludes its first season at the Los Angeles County Arboretum on Sept. 8 when
Larry Blank leads the orchestra in an evening centered on the music of George
Gershwin. Pianist Kevin Cole will be the soloist in Gershwin’s iconic Rhapsody in Blue. Blank was a long-time
collaborator with the late Marvin Hamlisch, including stints as music director
for Hamlisch’s musicals They’re Playing
Our Song
and A Chorus Line. Information:
www.pasadenasymphony-pops.org

 

The Pops has announced that next’s summer’s schedule will
increase from four concerts to five. Newly named Principal Conductor Michael
Feinstein will lead three of those programs. Information: www.pasadenasymphony-pops.org

 

The final weeks of the Hollywood Bowl season have several significant guest conductors on
the podium. On Tuesday and Thursday, Spanish maestro Rafael Frubeck de Burgos
leads the Los Angeles Philharmonic L.A. Master Chorale, L.A. Children’s Chorus
and three soloists in performances of Orff’s Carmina Burana. The program opens with Mendelssohn’s Incidental
Music to A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Information: www.hollywoodbowl.com

 

On Sept. 4, 30-year-old Polish conductor Krzysztof Urbaski
makes his Bowl debut leading a meaty (and unusual) program that concludes with
Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 10. Denis Matsuev, winner of the 11th
Tchaikovsky International Piano Competition in 1998, makes his first Bowl
appearance as soloist in Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 1 and, for good measure,
plays selections from Stravinsky’s Petrushka
transcribed for solo piano. Information:
www.hollywoodbowl.com

 

The Sept. 6 program is even more unusual (certainly by Bowl
standards). Bramwell Tovey returns to lead the Phil in Strauss’ Til
Euelenspiegel’s Merry Pranks
and Saint-Saens Carnival of the Animals.
However, it’s the soloists that make the evening potentially intriguing as the
violin and piano duo Igudesman
& Joo
will perform selections from their hit show, BIG Nightmare Music. Pianists Inon Barnatan
and Benjamin
Hochman
also be on hand. Information:
www.hollywoodbowl.com

 

And if that wasn’t enough, there’s plenty of movie music
slipped in between. John Williams conducts a program of his own music on Aug.
30 and Sept. 1, while Sept. 2 brings a salute to Paramount’s centennial, with
the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra conducted by David Newman. On all three programs,
the orchestras will accompany film clips that will be shown on the Bowl’s
screens, including a large one suspended above the orchestra. Information: www.hollywoodbowl.com

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(c) Copyright 2012, Robert D. Thomas. All rights reserved.
Portions may be quoted with attribution.