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  • WDCH
  • Jan. 15, 2008
  • Acclaimed Pianist Marino Formenti Joins for Green Umbrella Series Concert; Replaces Originally Scheduled Soloist Andreas Haefliger

    TUESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2008, AT 8 PM

    Los Angeles Philharmonic Music Director Esa-Pekka Salonen leads the Los Angeles Philharmonic New Music Group in a Messiaen program as part of the Philharmonic’s Green Umbrella new music series at Walt Disney Concert Hall, Tuesday, January 15, at 8 p.m. Pianist Marino Formenti, in his Walt Disney Concert Hall debut, joins the performance of Messiaen’s Des canyons aux étoiles. Formenti replaces originally scheduled soloist Andreas Haefliger who is unable to perform due to scheduling constraints. Haefliger, however, is to perform with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Friday through Sunday, January 18 through 20, as planned.
    Formenti has established himself as one of the most interesting interpreters of the present day, particularly through his performances of modern and contemporary music. A Los Angeles Times review described him as, “a Glenn Gould of the 21st century,” and further stated, “this nut is a genius.”
    Messiaen found his inspiration for Des canyons aux étoiles – commissioned for the U.S. bicentennial – while visiting the canyons of Arizona and Utah in 1972. The momentous piece, filled with birdsong and spiritual overtones, reflects two of the composer’s great passions – birds and religion.
    The Philharmonic’s groundbreaking Green Umbrella series offers five concerts during the 2007/08 season, featuring the Los Angeles Philharmonic New Music Group led by Music Director Esa-Pekka Salonen and guest conductors. The remainder of the 2007/08 season lineup includes three world premieres: Harold Meltzer’s Piano Concerto for chamber ensemble and piano (March 25, 2008), a new work by Gabriela Lena Frank (March 25, 2008) and a new work by Thomas Adès and Tal Rosner (May 27, 2008).

    An Upbeat Live pre-concert event takes place in Walt Disney Concert Hall’s BP Hall one hour prior to the concert, and is free to all ticket holders. Steven Stucky, Pulitzer Prize-winning composer and Consulting Composer for New Music for the Los Angeles Philharmonic, hosts.

    ESA-PEKKA SALONEN, who was born in Helsinki in 1958, studied at the Sibelius Academy in Finland. In 1979, he made his conducting debut with the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, and his American debut conducting the Los Angeles Philharmonic in 1984. He was recently appointed Principal Conductor of London's Philharmonia. In addition, Salonen has won acclaim for his work as a composer. Among the many highlights of Salonen's career with the Los Angeles Philharmonic have been world premieres of works by composers John Adams, Franco Donatoni, Anders Hillborg, William Kraft, Magnus Lindberg, Witold Lutoslawski, Bernard Rands, Kaija Saariaho, Rodion Shchedrin, Steven Stucky, Tan Dun, and Augusta Read Thomas, as well as his own works. He has led critically acclaimed festivals of music by Sibelius, Ligeti, Schoenberg, Shostakovich, Stravinsky, Berlioz and Beethoven, as well as the Tristan Project. He and the Philharmonic have toured extensively since 1992. In October of 2003, Salonen and the Los Angeles Philharmonic opened Walt Disney Concert Hall, designed by Frank Gehry. In March 2003, Salonen signed an exclusive recording contract with Deutsche Grammophon. The following year, DG released a disc devoted to his recent orchestral works, featuring Foreign Bodies, Insomnia, and Wing on Wing. In January 2006, Salonen and the Philharmonic recorded their first CD together for DG, the first live recording at Walt Disney Concert Hall. (Salonen and the Philharmonic also have four live concert recordings available for download on iTunes from DG Concerts.) Before signing with DG, Salonen recorded regularly with the Los Angeles Philharmonic for Sony Classical. Salonen is the recipient of several major awards including the Siena Prize from the Accademia Chigiana in 1993, the first conductor ever to receive the prize; the Royal Philharmonic Society's Opera Award in 1995; and their Conductor Award in 1997. In 1998, he was awarded the rank of Officier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French government. Musical America named him 2006 Musician of the Year.

    Hailed by critics and audiences alike for his genre-breaking programs and magnetic presence, MARINO FORMENTI has performed at some of the most important festivals and institutions around the world, including the Lucerne Festival, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, the Salzburg Festival, the Edinburgh International Festival, the Schleswig-Holstein Musikfestival, the Ruhrtriennale, Wien Modern, the Ojai Festival in California, the Bregenz Festival, the AGORA Festival of the IRCAM in Paris, the Festival Musica Strasbourg, Ars Musica Bruxelles, the Berliner Festwochen, the Philharmonie and the Konzerthaus in Berlin, the Musikverein and Konzerthaus in Vienna, the Philharmonie in Cologne, the Tonhalle in Zurich, Severance Hall in Cleveland, the Philharmonie in Budapest, Suntory Hall, Oji Hall and Casals Hall in Tokyo, Rachmaninoff Hall in Moscow and the Philharmonic in St. Petersburg. He has worked with conductors including Franz Welser-Möst, Sylvain Cambreling, Peter Eötvös, Ingo Metzmacher and Hans Zender, and with orchestras including the Cleveland Orchestra, the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, the Orchestre Philarmonique de Radio France, the DSO in Berlin and the RSO in Vienna. At Gidon Kremer’s Lockenhaus Festival, Formenti has appeared both as a soloist and as a conductor. In 2004, he made his debut as a soloist with the Cleveland Orchestra conducted by Franz Welser-Möst, followed by a series of three recitals within a single week for Lincoln Center’s “Great Performers Series” in New York, featuring works by composers including Stockhausen, Messiaen, Barraqué, Lachenmann, Lucier, Berio, Cage and Sciarrino. In May 2003, Formenti played a return engagement alongside Pierre Boulez at the Ojai Festival, where he performed three recitals in June of 2002. In February 2001, he returned with a three-recital series to the legendary Monday Evening Concerts at LACMA in Los Angeles, where in the previous year he made his American debut as a soloist performing a four-recital series. The LA Weekly described the event as “a state of exhilaration beyond any experience... his sheer power pinned you to your seat.” Formenti has recorded for several labels including Kairos, Col Legno and BIS; his recordings have been enthusiastically reviewed by both the European and American press and won various awards. A member of the ensemble Klangforum Wien, Marino Formenti devotes much of his energy to projects with modern and contemporary works and to adventurous new programs. He has collaborated with some of the most important living composers, including Helmut Lachenmann, György Kurtág, Salvatore Sciarrino, Olga Neuwirth and Beat Furrer.

    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.


    TUESDAY, JANUARY 15, 2008, at 8 PM

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

    Green Umbrella

    Los Angeles Philharmonic New Music Group

    ESA-PEKKA SALONEN, conductor


    MESSIAEN Des canyons aux étoiles

    An Upbeat Live pre-concert event takes place one hour prior to the concert in BP Hall at Walt Disney Concert Hall, and is free to all ticket holders. Steven Stucky, Pulitzer Prize-winning composer and Consulting Composer for New Music for the Los Angeles Philharmonic, hosts.
    Tickets ($22-47) are on sale now online at, at the Walt Disney Concert Hall Box Office, 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 10 or more may be eligible for special discounts for selected concerts and seating areas. For information, please call 323.850.2000.

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  • Contact:

    Adam Crane, 213.972.3422,; Lisa White, 213.972.3408,; Photos: 213.972.3034