Esa-Pekka Salonen

The following are our current recommendations for truly exceptional performances in December 2012. As always, we will be adding to this list as our contributors continue to examine the offerings at world-class venues and companies. Holiday listings will also be updated as they are announced.

‘Salonen conducts Beethoven and Lutostawski,’ Walt Disney Concert Hall, Nov 30, 8PM, Dec 1, 8PM, Dec 2, 2PM 2012 WORTH THE RISK
L.A.’s beloved former resident maestro, Esa-Pekka Salonen, will join the LA Philharmonic to commemorate Polish composer Witold Lutoslawski with this performance featuring his Fourth Symphony. The program also includes Beethoven’s Symphonies No. 1 and 2. See our preview…

‘A Christmas Carol,’ by Charles Dickens, A Noise Within, Directed by Geoff Elliott & Julia Rodriguez-Elliott Dec 1 – 23, 2012 WORTH THE RISK

A credible and ongoing success for ANW. Suitable for children. We’ve enjoyed it in the past.

‘Gordon Getty Concert: Lionheart’ Saturday December 1, 2012 7 pm Harold M. Williams Auditorium, Getty Center HIGHLY RECOMMENDED

One of America’s leading ensembles in vocal chamber music, Lionheart is known for its soaring artistry as well as its masterful musical scholarship. Acclaimed for its “smoothly blended and impeccably balanced sound” (New York Times), the ensemble performs haunting songs from the illuminated pages of the Laudario of Sant Agnese, on view in the exhibition Florence at the Dawn of the Renaissance: Painting and Illumination, 1300–1350. Tickets $20; $15 students/seniors. Tickets on sale beginning October 18.

‘Rhapsody in Blue,’ Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, Saturday, Dec 8, 8PM Alex Theatre; Sunday, Dec 9, 7PM, 2012 Royce Hall  HIGHLY RECOMMENDED

A nicely chosen program–should be terrific. Artists: Jeffrey Kahane, conductor & piano. Program: John Adams Son of Chamber Symphony; Copland Appalachian Spring Suite; Gershwin Rhapsody in Blue (original 1924 version); Dvořák Serenade for Winds, Op. 44. Read our preview…

‘Madame Butterfly,’ L.A. Opera, Nov 17-Dec 9, 2012, The Dorothy Chandler Pavilion HIGHLY RECOMMENDED

A love that knows no boundaries goes horribly wrong in a fateful meeting of East and West. What begins as an idyllic liaison in an enchanting land of cherry blossoms turns into the heartbreaking tragedy of an abandoned bride forced to make an excruciating decision. A traditional production to contrast with the stark modernist rendering which haunted L.A. Opera for a couple of seasons.

Le Salon de Musiques, Sunday, December 9th 2012, 4.00 pm HIGHLY RECOMMENDED

Always a charming afternoon of chamber music, including conversation, champagne, and a light dinner overlooking the Music Center plaza. This concert: SEARMI PARK Violin, JOHN WALZ Cello, FRANCOIS CHOUCHAN Piano
SCHUBERT: Sonatensatz D 28 Piano Trio
SCHUBERT: Piano Trio n.2 opus 100 in E flat Major D 929

‘Zubin Mehta 50th Anniversary Concert,’ Walt Disney Concert Hall, Dec 13-Dec 15, 2012 HIGHLY RECOMMENDED

Fifty years ago Zubin Mehta inaugurated his tenure as Music Director of the LA Phil with this exact colorful and varied program. It made a statement and delivered thrills–why not again? See our preview…

MOZARTOverture to Don Giovanni
HINDEMITHSymphony: Mathis der Maler
DVORÁKSymphony No. 7

‘Rejoice! Bach Magnificat,’ Los Angeles Master Chorale, Disney Hall, Sunday, Dec 16, 2012, 7pm HIGHLY RECOMMENDED

Trumpets herald the holiday season with two festive works by Baroque music’s most prominent composers.

Click here to listen to samples for this concert


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