Skip to page content
  • WDCH
  • ALEXANDER MICKELTHWATE LEADS THE LOS ANGELES PHILHARMONIC IN A TOYOTA SYMPHONIES FOR YOUTH CONCERT HOLIDAY PROGRAM AT WALT DISNEY CONCERT HALL
  • Dec. 18, 2004
  • A Magician and His Wooden Chest Promises
    Mystery and Wonder in Stravinsky's Petrushka

    SATURDAY, DECEMBER 18

    CHILDREN'S WORKSHOPS AT 10 AM; CONCERT AT 11 AM

    Sponsored by Toyota

    Assistant Conductor Alexander Mickelthwate leads the Los Angeles Philharmonic in the Toyota Symphonies for Youth concert of excerpts from Stravinsky's Petrushka at Walt Disney Concert Hall, on Saturday, December 18, at 11 a.m. The ballet Petrushka, directed by John de Lancie and choreographed by Peggy Hickey, features principal dancers Seth Belliston, Greg Engel, Lisa Gillespie, and Nicholas Gunn, plus 12 children actors from The Young Actors Space.

    In this inventive adaptation of Petrushka, a mysterious wooden chest sits on stage and suddenly opens; a Magician (Nicolas Gunn) appears. Out of the magic chest he pulls three puppets: Petrushka (Seth Belliston), the Doll (Lisa Gillespie) and the Moor (Greg Engel). The puppets dance to the music, and children create the world of the carnival, the prison, and the sideshows. Petrushka loves the Doll but the Moor won't have it. Petrushka fights valiantly but all seems lost. Suddenly, the kids come to Petrushka's aid. The Moor is beaten, and the Magician is stripped of his powers but not before turning the Doll and Petrushka into humans.

    The Los Angeles Philharmonic's Toyota Symphonies for Youth series take place on six Saturday mornings throughout the season. Before every concert, the Walt Disney Concert Hall becomes a musical playground with hands-on art making, musical activities, dance, theater, and storytelling. Workshops take place in the lobby and garden spaces one hour prior to the performance.

    ALEXANDER MICKELTHWATE joined the Los Angeles Philharmonic as Assistant Conductor at the start of the 2004/2005 season. Most recently, he served as Assistant Conductor at the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, where, in addition to his ASO duties he served as co-artistic director and conductor of the Atlanta-based contemporary music ensemble Bent Frequency, which he co-founded in May 2003. In the summer of 2002, he was Conductor in Residence and Director of Conducting Studies for the Sewanee Summer Music Festival, and he is a member of the conducting faculty at Kennesaw State University in Georgia and artist in residence at Georgia State University. Though still in the early stages of his career, Mickelthwate has already conducted the symphony orchestras of Baltimore, New Jersey, and Oregon, as well as the Brooklyn Philharmonic, Eos Orchestra, and Cleveland Chamber Symphony, and worked as cover conductor for the Boston Symphony. Michelthwate recently made his Los Angeles Philharmonic debut, stepping in on 30minutes notice for guest conductor Mikko Franck, and will lead a Green Umbrella program in January 2005 with the Los Angeles Philharmonic New Music Group.

    Actor, producer and director JOHN de LANCIE is well known for his work in television, film and theater and on the concert stage. His film credits include Patient 14, The Hand that Rocks the Cradle, The Fisher King, and many others. Television shows include The West Wing, The Practice and Star Trek. He has been a member of the American Shakespeare Festival, The Seattle Repertory Company, South Coast Repertory, and the Mark Taper Forum. De Lancie has directed plays such as The Waldorf Conference with Ed Asner, and NPR's nationwide broadcast of Invasion from Mars with Leonard Nimoy among others. His narrations (A Lincoln Portrait, The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra, Peter and the Wolf, A Midsummer Night's Dream, and The Abduction from the Seraglio) have been acclaimed in performances with the New York and Los Angeles Philharmonic orchestras, the Philadelphia Orchestra, St. Paul's chamber Orchestra, and symphony orchestras of Montreal, Seattle and Chicago. De Lancie writes and directs the Los Angeles Philharmonic's "First Nights" series. He has been involved with the Los Angeles Philharmonic Toyota Symphonies for Youth since 1998.

    EDITORS PLEASE NOTE:

    SATURDAY, DECEMBER 18: CHILDREN'S WORKSHOPS AT 10AM; CONCERT AT 11AM

    Walt Disney Concert Hall

    111 S. Grand Avenue, Los Angeles

    LOS ANGELES PHILHARMONIC

    ALEXANDER MICKELTHWATE, conductor

    JOHN de LANCIE, director

    PEGGY HICKEY, choreographer

    ELA JO ERWIN, costume design

    RAND RYAN, lighting design

    SETH BELLISTON, GREG ENGEL, LISA GILLESPIE, NICHOLAS GUNN, dancers

    YOUNG ACTORS SPACE, children actors

    STRAVINSKY Petrushka (excerpts)

    Sponsored by Toyota

    # # #

  • contact:

    Rachelle Roe: 213.972.7310; Sylvi Brown: 310.702.5847; photos: 213.972.3034