• Oct. 2, 2014
  • Los Angeles, CA (October 2, 2014) – In honor of the 10th birthday of the spectacular Walt Disney Concert Hall organ, the LA Phil presents celebratory programming throughout the 2014/15 season.  The organ’s striking visual design was a collaboration between Frank Gehry and organ builder Manuel Rosales. The organ, affectionately called “Hurricane Mama,” was so named by musical visionary Terry Riley after a night of improvising.

    Inaugurated in 2004 at the opening of the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s second season in Walt Disney Concert Hall, the organ is voiced with a wide dynamic range ‑ from pianississimo to a breathtaking fortissimo that can obliterate the sounds of a full orchestra. The specially curved wood façade pipes are actual playing pipes that were made by Glatter-Götz Orgelbau in Germany and consist of the Violone and Bassoon basses. Behind the façade are three levels of pipes, including metal pipes made of tin and lead alloys and wood pipes made of Norwegian pine.

    See below for more little-known facts and a full calendar of 10th birthday programming featuring the Walt Disney Concert Hall organ throughout the 2014/15 season:


    Sunday, October 12, 2014, at 7:30 PM

    Christopher Houlihan, organ
    Members of the Los Angeles Philharmonic brass section
    Thomas Hooten, trumpet
    Christopher Still, trumpet
    James Wilt, trumpet
    Stéphane Beaulac, trumpet
    Andrew Bain, horn
    Gregory Roosa, horn
    Ethan Bearman, horn
    Brian Drake, horn
    James Miller, trombone
    Herbert Ausman, trombone
    John Lofton, trombone
    Norman Pearson, tuba

    Joseph Pereira, timpani

    GABRIELI  Canzon per Sonar in Echo Duodecimi Toni
    GABRIELI  Canzon per Sonar Noni Toni
    SOWERBY  Toccata
    VIERNE  Marche Triomphale
    VIERNE  Romance and Finale from Symphony No. 4, Op. 32
    DUKAS  Fanfare
    BARBER  Mutations from Bach
    BACH  Passacaglia and Fugue in C minor, BWV 582
    Bruce MILLER  Pluto: The Last Planet

    This is the first time in the organ recital series that the organ will be paired with members of the LA Phil brass section for an all-brass-and-organ program.

    Sunday, November 23, 2014, at 7:30 PM


    Michael Barone, host
    Ken Cowan, organ
    Frederick Swann, organ
    Cherry Rhodes, organ
    Chelsea Chen, organ
    Christoph Bull, organ
    Carol Williams, organ
    Aaron David Miller, organ
    Cameron Carpenter, organ 

    REGER/BACH  Chromatic Fantasia and Fugue in D minor, BWV 903
    Searle WRIGHT  Lyric Rhapsody
    Robert HEBBLE  Heraldings
    D’ANTALFFY-ZSIROSS  Sportive Fauns
    Clarence MADER  Afternoon of a Toad
    RAVEL  Bolero arranged by Hans Uwe Hielscher
    Carol WILLIAMS  Freedom      
    Carol WILLIAMS  Walk on the Wild Side dedicated to Jimmy Smith
    Carol WILLIAMS  Venus Toccata
    SCRIABIN (trans Carpenter)  Sonata No. 4

    During this concert, every single one of the 6,145 pipes, ranging in size from a pencil to a telephone pole, will be heard.

    Sunday, January 11, 2015, at 7:30 PM

    Anthony Newman, organ

    Anthony NEWMAN  Fantasia on Stravinsky’s Oedipus Rex
    Anthony NEWMAN  Fantasia and Fanfare on Stravinsky’s Canticum Sacrum
    NEWMAN  Adagio, Toccata and Fugue in D
    BACH  Toccata, Adagio and Fugue in C, BWV 564 
    MOZART  Three Sonatas, K. 263, K. 67, K. 278
    BACH  Fugue in G “à la gigue,” BWV 577

    The organist’s bench is raised and lowered with an electric motor.

    Sunday, April 19, 2015, at 7:30 PM

    Olivier Latry, organ

    DUPRÉ  Cortège et Litanie
    FRANCK  Prière
    GUILMANT  Final from Sonata No. 1
    COCHEREAU  Berceuse à la mémoire de Louis Vierne
    COCHEREAU  Boléro
    VIERNE  Symphony No. 2

    Planning, construction, and installation of the Walt Disney Concert organ took a combined 35,000 worker-hours.


    Saturday, October 18, 2014 (10 AM arts workshop; 11 AM performance)
    Saturday, October 25, 2014 (10 AM arts workshop; 11 AM performance)

    Toyota Symphonies for Youth
    The Organ: Stops, Keys, Pedals and Pipes

    The organ was a gift to the County of Los Angeles from the Toyota Motor Corporation.

    Friday, October 24, 2014 at 8 PM 
    Saturday, October 25, 2014, at 8 PM

    Sunday, October 26, 2014 at 2 PM

    Happy Birthday, Hurricane Mama

    Los Angeles Philharmonic
    Esa-Pekka Salonen, conductor
    Olivier Latry, organ

    JANÁČEK  Sinfonietta
    Kaija SAARIAHO  Maan varjot (Earth Shadow) (U.S. premiere)
    SIBELIUS  Lemminkäinen Suite

    Closed circuit television gives the organist at the main console a view of the conductor.

    Friday, October 31, 2014, at 8 PM

    Halloween Film & Organ
    Clark Wilson, organ


    Don’t be scared to support the Walt Disney Concert Hall organ as the keyboard is made from simulated ivory.  Other materials used to build the instrument include Douglas fir (pipes), Norwegian pine (pipes), porcelain (stop knobs), ebony (keyboard), and lead and tin alloys (pipes).

    Thursday, November 20, 2014, at 8 PM
    Friday, November 21, 2014, at 8 PM
    Saturday, November 22, 2014, at 2 PM
    Sunday, November 23, 2014, at 2 PM

    Los Angeles Philharmonic
    Gustavo Dudamel, conductor
    Cameron Carpenter, organ
    Heidi Stober, soprano

    BARBER  Toccata Festiva for organ and orchestra
    SCRIABIN (trans Carpenter)  Sonata No. 4 (for solo organ)
    HARTKE  Symphony No. 4, “Organ” (world premiere, LA Phil commission)
    SAINT-SAËNS  Symphony No. 3, “Organ”

    The Saint-Saëns Symphony No. 3 was performed at the organ’s inaugural concerts on October 2 and 3, 2004.

    For more information and full artist biographies, please visit LAPhil.com

    Subscriptions and single tickets for the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s 2014/15 season at Walt Disney Concert Hall are currently available. To purchase, please visit LAPhil.com, the Walt Disney Concert Hall Box Office or any Ticketmaster outlet. To order by phone with credit card, please call the Walt Disney Concert Hall Box Office at 323.850.2000, or Ticketmaster at 800.745.3000. For more information, please call 323.850.2000.

    The Los Angeles Philharmonic Association, under the vibrant leadership of Music Director Gustavo Dudamel, presents an inspiring array of music from all genres – orchestral, chamber and Baroque music, organ and celebrity recitals, new music, jazz, world music and pop – at two of L.A.’s iconic venues, Walt Disney Concert Hall (LAPhil.com) and the Hollywood Bowl (HollywoodBowl.com). The LA Phil’s season at Walt Disney Concert Hall extends from September through May, and throughout the summer at the Hollywood Bowl. With the preeminent Los Angeles Philharmonic at the foundation of its offerings, the LA Phil aims to enrich and transform lives through music, with a robust mix of artistic, education and community programs.


  • contact:

    Sophie Jefferies, sjefferies@laphil.org, 213.972.3422
    Laura Cohen, laurabcohen@me.com, 310.867.3897
    Photos: 213.972.3034