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  • LAPA
  • May. 16, 2003

    Thursday, May 22, 8 PM; Saturday, May 24, 8 PM;

    and Sunday, May 25, 2:30 PM

    The Los Angeles Philharmonic bids a final farewell to its home for four decades, the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, concluding the orchestra's 84th season with concerts led by Pierre Boulez. The program on Thursday, May 22 at 8 PM; Saturday, May 24 at 8 PM; and Sunday, May 25, at 2:30 PM features pianist Mitsuko Uchida and Bartók's Four Orchestral Pieces, Messiaen's Oiseaux exotiques, and Strauss' Burleske in D minor. The program closes with Haydn's Farewell Symphony, where orchestra members leave the stage one by one during the piece until only two solo violins remain. At the Sunday performance, orchestra members will add individual farewell gestures in what is an emotional close of an era.

    Upbeat Live pre-concert events take place one hour prior to each concert at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in the Grand Hall and are free to all ticket holders. KUSC classical music radio host Alan Chapman leads the sessions this week, which feature Philharmonic musicians in a special farewell to the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion.

    Bartók's Four Orchestral Pieces, Op. 12, were written in 1912 but not orchestrated until 1921. They remained fairly unknown until Pierre Boulez discovered them in the 1970s and went on to conduct them with great success. (Boulez later conducted the first Los Angeles Philharmonic performance of the Four Orchestral Pieces in May 1992). The work contains some of Bartók's most atypical music, departing from his usual folk music influences.

    Described by Messiaen as "almost a piano concerto," Oiseaux exotiques (Exotic Birds) has the piano borrowing the sounds of seven distinct birds during the work's cadenzas. The score as a whole mimics exotic bird songs from India, China, Malaysia (East Indies), and North and South America.

    Written by Strauss at the age of 22, the Burleske in D minor was inspired by the composer's solo performance of Mozart's Piano Concerto in C minor. Shades of Liszt abound in this work noted for its humor and whimsical mockery clothed in serious dress.

    Haydn's Symphony No. 45 in F-sharp minor ("Farewell") is a fitting conclusion to the orchestra's final program in the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, and in fact was used for another farewell nearly two centuries ago. When the members of Prince Nikolaus Esterházy's orchestra wanted to return to their families as an exceptionally long residency at the prince's Hungarian summer palace looked as though it would stretch on into eternity, their leader, Haydn, did what any good Kapellmeister would do: he wrote a symphony. Known for its clever finale, where musicians leave the stage during the final movement until only two solo violins remain, the "Farewell" Symphony made the musicians' desire to go home clear the prince. The Los Angeles Philharmonic will recreate the music in its own farewell, this time to the orchestra's home since 1964, the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion.

    Composer and conductor PIERRE BOULEZ has appeared frequently with the Los Angeles Philharmonic through the years, although these are his first concerts with the orchestra since 1996. One of the most influential musical figures of the past century, Boulez was born in Montbrison, France, in 1925. After initial training in mathematics, he studied piano, composition, and choral conducting at the Paris Conservatory, where his teachers included Olivier Messiaen and Rene Leibowitz. Boulez began composing in the mid-1940s. In 1953, he founded the Concerts du Petit Marigny, one of the first concert series dedicated solely to the performance of modern music, which later became the Domaine Musical series. His conducting career was launched in 1958; in the 1970s Boulez served as music director of both the BBC Symphony Orchestra and the New York Philharmonic. He subsequently reduced his conducting schedule to concentrate on the Institute for Research and Coordination Acoustics/Music (IRCAM), which he founded and directed until 1991. He is also co-founder of Cité de la Musique, a new music center in Paris. Boulez has held the post of principal guest conductor of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra since 1995. His discography includes prize-winning recordings of Parsifal and Berg's Lulu (world premiere recording of the three-act version), along with a broad range of twentieth-century orchestral masterworks, including his own compositions. His recordings have garnered 24 Grammy awards.

    MITSUKO UCHIDA's interpretation of a wide ranging repertoire has gained her a formidable reputation as a pianist who brings intellectual acuity and musical insight to her performances. She is particularly noted for her interpretations of Mozart, Beethoven, and Schubert, but is also a dedicated performer of the music of Berg, Schoenberg, and Messiaen. In May 1996, she gave the U.S. premiere of Harrison Birtwistle's piano concerto Antiphonies with the Los Angeles Philharmonic and Pierre Boulez. In October she opened the Harrods International Piano Series commemorating the 150th anniversary of Chopin's death at the Royal Festival Hall in London. Uchida records exclusively for Philips and her recordings are frequently nominated for awards throughout the world. She has recorded all of Mozart's piano sonatas and concerti, and the sonatas (which won the 1989 Gramophone Award) form part of Philips' legendary Mozart Edition released in the composer's bicentenary year. Her other recordings include works by Debussy, Beethoven, Chopin, and Schumann, while her recent Schubert piano sonata series continues with a disc of Piano Sonatas D. 845 and D. 575. She has also recorded the Schoenberg Piano Concerto with Pierre Boulez and the Cleveland Orchestra. Uchida is Co-Director, with Richard Goode, of the Marlboro Music Festival.


    Thursday, May 22, 8 PM

    Saturday, May 24, 8 PM

    Sunday, May 25, 2:30 PM


    PIERRE BOULEZ, conductor


    BARTÓK: Four Orchestral Pieces, Op. 12

    MESSIAEN: Oiseaux exotiques

    STRAUSS: Burleske in D minor

    HAYDN: Symphony No. 45, "Farewell"

    Upbeat Live pre-concert events take place one hour prior to each concert at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in the Grand Hall and are free to all ticket holders. KUSC classical music radio host Alan Chapman leads the sessions this week, which feature Philharmonic musicians in a special farewell to the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion.

    Tickets ($14 - $82) are on sale now at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion box office, all Ticketmaster outlets (Robinsons-May, Tower Records, Ritmo Latino, and selected Wherehouse locations), and by credit card phone order at 323.850.2000. Tickets are also available online at A limited number of $10 rush tickets for seniors and full time students may be available two hours prior to the performance at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion box office. Valid identification is required; one ticket per person. Groups of 12 or more may be eligible for special discounts. For further information, please call 323.850.2000.

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  • Contact:

    Elizabeth Hinckley, 323.850.2047; Rachelle Roe, 323.850.2032