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  • WDCH
  • Dec. 15, 2006
  • Associate Conductor Alexander Mickelthwate Leads Los Angeles Philharmonic in a Program Featuring Nutcracker Suite, Orchestral Holiday Music, and Sing-Along of Traditional Carols

    FRIDAY, DECEMBER 15, 2006, AT 8 PM

    SATURDAY, DECEMBER 16, 2006, AT 2 PM

    SUNDAY, DECEMBER 17, 2006, AT 7:30 PM

    Continuing the Los Angeles Philharmonic's Deck the Hall series of holiday concerts, Associate Conductor Alexander Mickelthwate leads the Los Angeles Philharmonic in 'Twas the Week Before Christmas, a joyous program at Walt Disney Concert Hall that celebrates the sounds of the season on Friday, December 15 at 8 p.m., Saturday, December 16 at 2 p.m., and Sunday, December 17 at 7:30 p.m.

    'Twas the Week Before Christmas is a family program that begins with Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker Suite, portions of which feature dancers from Westside Ballet, one of the nation's premier ballet training companies based in Santa Monica. The Los Angeles Philharmonic also performs glorious orchestral favorites including Bach's "Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring" and Leroy Anderson's "Sleigh Ride." The Canterbury Choir and Coventry Choir from the All Saints Episcopal Church in Pasadena join the Los Angeles Philharmonic for "For Unto Us a Child is Born" and "Hallelujah," both from Handel's Messiah. The program concludes with a festive sing-along of favorite holiday carols, including "Joy to the World," "Deck the Halls," "Rudolph, The Red-Nosed Reindeer" and many more.

    David Prather guest hosts each 'Twas the Week Before Christmas performance, and narrates the well-known poem 'Twas the Night Before Christmas.

    Whether you're seeking comfort and joy, in need of camaraderie and a good laugh, or making plans to ring in 2007, the yuletide spirit fills Walt Disney Concert Hall with Deck the Hall, a series of festive performances throughout the month of December - plus two performances on New Year's Eve - that offers an incredible array of artists bringing their personal touch to the season. Other Deck the Hall concerts include A Chanticleer Christmas on Dec. 19; The Klezmatics: Happy Joyous Hanukkah on Dec. 21; Escovedo Family's Latin Holiday Celebration on Dec. 22; Holiday Sing-Along on Dec. 23; The Blind Boys of Alabama on Dec. 23; and two performances on New Year's Eve with Lyle Lovett.

    ALEXANDER MICKELTHWATE is the newly appointed Music Director of the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, and was recently promoted to Associate Conductor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic for the 2006/2007 season. As assistant conductor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic for the past two years, Mickelthwate led the orchestra in programs at Walt Disney Concert Hall, appearing on the Green Umbrella new music series, education and community concerts, and at the Hollywood Bowl. In January 2006, following a performance of Boulez's "Le Marteau Sans Maître" with the Philharmonic's New Music Group, Mark Swed of the Los Angeles Times wrote, "Alexander Mickelthwate has been a fearless assistant conductor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic. Mickelthwate conducted very much in the Boulez manner: calm under pressure, sure of ever-changing meters…" As a guest conductor, Mickelthwate has appeared with the symphony orchestras of Atlanta, Baltimore, Chicago, Dallas, Honolulu, Houston, Indianapolis, Nashville, New Jersey, Oregon, and Toronto; the Brooklyn Philharmonic, the Chicago Civic Orchestra, the Cleveland Chamber Symphony, the Eos Orchestra, and the National Arts Centre Orchestra (Ottawa). Abroad, Mickelthwate made his European debut with the Hamburg Symphony in April 2006. During his tenure as assistant conductor with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, which he completed at the end of the 2003-04 season, he co-founded the new music ensemble, Bent Frequency, which was hailed by Gramophone Magazine as "one of the brightest ensembles on the scene." Always striving to engage young people in music, he conducted more than 60 Young People's Concerts with the Atlanta Symphony, and organized an exchange between the Atlanta Youth Symphony and Berlin Youth Orchestra during the summer of 2003, hosting concerts in both cities.

    CANTERBURY CHOIR AND COVENTRY CHOIR are the two adult choirs, totaling more than 100 singers, at All Saints Episcopal Church in Pasadena. The choirs' repertoires span the spectrum of choral music, from gospel, jazz and world music to traditional full-scale orchestra/choral works, including premieres of numerous works by outstanding Los Angeles-based composers. The choirs have performed for the American Choral Directors Association and the American Guild of Organists - locally, and for regional and national conferences.

    WESTSIDE BALLET COMPANY, a nonprofit organization, is one of the national's premier ballet training companies. This pre-professional company was created by Yvonne Mounsey and Rosemary Valaire in 1970 to provide the promising young dancers of the Westside School of Ballet the performance opportunities that are so vital to their growth. The Santa Monica, California-based company now comprises approximately 120 dancers, ages 8 to 18. The Company and the School are affiliated with the newly-formed Los Angeles Ballet, which recently debuted under the artistic direction of Thordahl Christensen and Colleen Neary, bringing to Los Angeles the full spectrum of classic and contemporary ballet, from school to training company to professional company. Many dancers have gone on to professional careers, including Monique Meunier and Anna Liceica (ABT), Martine Harley (Houston Ballet), Melissa Barak and Andrew Veyette (New York City Ballet), Stayce Camparo (Kansas City Ballet) and Francis Veyette (Pennsylvania Ballet). Yvonne Mounsey, Artistic Director for Westide Ballet Company, joined New York City Ballet as a principal dancer for George Balanchine after performing with Massine's Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo and de Basil's original Ballet Russe. During Ms. Mounsey's distinguished career with New York City Ballet, she created the role of Center Spanish in Balanchine's original production of The Nutcracker. Among the other roles she created are The Harp in Fanfare, The Queen in The Cage, and The Other Woman in Lilac Garden. In 1960, Ms. Mounsey co-founded the Johannesburg City Ballet, now Pact Ballet, one of the world's major dance companies.

    The Los Angeles Philharmonic Association, under Music Director Esa-Pekka Salonen, presents the finest in orchestral and chamber music, recitals, new music, jazz, world music and holiday concerts at two of the most remarkable places anywhere to experience music - Walt Disney Concert Hall and the Hollywood Bowl. In addition to a 30-week winter subscription season at Walt Disney Concert Hall, the LA Phil presents a 12-week summer festival at the legendary Hollywood Bowl, summer home of the Los Angeles Philharmonic and home of the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra. In fulfilling its commitment to the community, the Association's involvement with Los Angeles extends to educational programs, community concerts and children's programming, ever seeking to provide inspiration and delight to the broadest possible audience.


    FRIDAY, DECEMBER 15, 2006, AT 8 PM

    SATURDAY, DECEMBER 16, 2006, AT 2 PM

    SUNDAY, DECEMBER 17, 2006, AT 7:30 PM

    WALT DISNEY CONCERT HALL, 111 S. Grand Avenue, Los Angeles

    'Twas the Week Before Christmas



    DAVID PRATHER, narrator and host


    WESTSIDE BALLET COMPANY (Yvonne Mounsey, Artistic Director)


    Nutcracker Suite, Op. 71a

    "Overture miniature"


    "Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy"


    "Arab Dance"

    "Chinese Dance"

    "Dance of the Reed Pipes"

    "Waltz of the Flowers"


    "Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring" from Cantata No. 147


    "For Unto Us a Child is Born" from Messiah

    "Hallelujah" from Messiah


    Sleigh Ride


    'Twas the Night Before Christmas


    arr. DRAGON

    "Joy to the World"

    trad. arr. KENNEDY

    "Deck the Halls"

    Regney/Shane (arr. Dragon)

    "Do You Hear What I Hear?"

    MARKS (arr. BASS)

    "Rudolph, The Red-Nosed Reindeer"

    td. arr. BASS

    "The Twelve Days of Christmas"

    Mendelssohn (arr. Dragon)

    "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing"

    F.X. Gruber

    "Silent Night"

    WADE (arr. Dragon)

    "O Come, All Ye Faithful"

    PIERPOINT (arr. Kennedy)

    "Jingle Bells"

    Tickets ($20-$135) are on sale now at the Walt Disney Concert Hall box office, online at, or via credit card phone order at 323.850.2000. A limited number of $10 rush tickets for seniors and full time students may be available at the Walt Disney Concert Hall Box Office two hours prior to the performance. Valid identification is required; one ticket per person; cash only. Groups of 12 or more may be eligible for special discounts for selected concerts and seating areas. For all information, please call 323.850.2000.

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  • Contact:

    Adam Crane, 213.972.3422; Lisa Bellamore, 213.972.3689; Photos: 213.972.3034