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  • Conductor Nicholas Mcgegan Returns to the Hollywood Bowl to Lead the Los Angeles Philharmonic in Two All-Mozart Evenings
  • Aug. 11, 2009
  • Concerts Feature Pianist Louis Lortie

    TUESDAY, AUGUST 11, 2009, AT 8 PM

    THURSDAY, AUGUST 13, 2009, AT 8 PM

    The August 11 Performance is a Fidelity Investments FutureStage Concert; August 11 Media Sponsor: KUSC

    The Los Angeles Philharmonic’s classical summer season at the Hollywood Bowl presents the return of conductor Nicholas McGegan as he leads the LA Phil in an all-Mozart concert Tuesday and Thursday, August 11 and 13, at 8 p.m. The program showcases pianist Louis Lortie performing Piano Concerto No. 23 in A, K. 488, and also includes the Overture to The Marriage of Figaro and Symphony No. 40 in G minor, K. 550.

    The concerts begin with the Overture to The Marriage of Figaro, the first of Mozart’s three collaborations with librettist Lorenzo Da Ponte. Following is the Piano Concerto No. 23, which was one of three piano concertos unpublished at the composer’s death. The evenings close with Symphony No. 40 in G minor, often referred to as the “great” G-minor Symphony to distinguish it from the “little” G-minor Symphony No. 25. These pieces were the only two minor key symphonies that Mozart wrote.

    Of Nicholas McGegan, the Los Angeles Times has stated, “closing your eyes means missing something vital. Other conductors may interpret baroque scores as plains of sewing machine rhythms and textures; McGegan finds in them rivulets, courses, hairpin turns and breezes gusting through valleys and up and around mountains…At every move, his musicians respond instantly, fluidly, and the music springs into life and stays alive.”

    Montreal-born Louis Lortie made his debut with the Montreal Symphony Orchestra at the age of 13 and with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra three years later. With the Montreal Symphony, he has performed and conducted all five Beethoven Piano Concertos and most recently, the complete Mozart Piano Concertos.

    Through more than 20 years as its music director, NICHOLAS McGEGAN has established the San Francisco-based Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra as the leading period performance band in America - and at the forefront of the 'historical' movement worldwide thanks to notable appearances at Carnegie Hall, the London Proms, the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, and the International Handel Festival, Gottingen where he has been artistic director since 1991. In Gottingen and with the PBO he has defined an approach to period style that sets the current standard: probing, serious but undogmatic, recognizing that the music of the past doesn't belong in a museum or in academia but in vigorous engagement with an audience, for pleasure and delight on both sides of the platform edge. Active in opera as well as the concert hall, McGegan was principal conductor of Sweden's perfectly preserved 18th Century theatre Drottingholm 1993-1996, running the annual festival there. And he has been a pioneer in the process of exporting historically informed practice beyond the small world of period instruments to the wider one of conventional symphonic forces, guest-conducting orchestras like the Concertgebouw, Suisse Romande, Halle, Philadelphia, as well as the Toronto, Sydney, Montreal and Houston Symphonies, and opera companies like Covent Garden, San Francisco, Santa Fe and Washington. Engagements in the current season include Bach with the St Paul Chamber Orchestra, Rameau with the Cleveland Orchestra, Purcell with the Chicago Symphony, and Handel with the New York Philharmonic. He has teaching residencies at Juilliard and Yale. Summer takes him to Aspen, Drottingholm, Edinburgh International Festival and the London Proms. And as proof that his repertory interests do actually extend beyond 1750, he also conducts the Hong Kong Philharmonic in Lutoslawski. His discography of more than 100 releases includes the world premiere recording of Handel's Susanna, which attracted both a Gramophone Award and Grammy nomination, and recent issues of the same composer's Solomon, Samson, and Acis and Galatea (a rarity in that it unearths the little-known version adapted by Felix Mendelssohn). Among his other rediscoveries is the first performance in modern times of Handel's masterly but mislaid Gloria. And he has broken new ground in experimental dance-collaborations with Mark Morris, notably at festivals like Edinburgh, Ravina and the Mostly Mozart in New York. Born in England, Nicholas McGegan was educated at Oxford, Cambridge and the Royal College of Music, London. His awards include an honorary professorship at Georg-August University, Gottingen, and an official Nicholas McGegan Day, declared by the Mayor of San Francisco in recognition of two decades' distinguished work with the Philharmonia Baroque. To view Nicholas McGegan’s complete discography and stay up to date with his performance schedule, visit his website at www.nicholasmcgegan.com.

    Canadian pianist LOUIS LORTIE has been praised for the fresh perspective and individuality he brings to a deliberately broad spectrum of the keyboard canon. He studied in Montréal with Yvonne Hubert (a pupil of French pianist, Alfred Cortot), in Vienna with the Beethoven specialist Dieter Weber, and subsequently with Schnabel disciple Leon Fleisher, among others. Lortie has performed the complete works of Ravel in London and Montréal for the BBC and CBC, and is also known for his interpretation of Chopin. Following a recital of Chopin’s complete Etudes in London’s Queen Elizabeth Hall, the Financial Times wrote: “Better Chopin playing than this is not to be heard, not anywhere.” He often performs major contemporary works, recently concentrating on pieces by British composer Thomas Adés. Also celebrated for his interpretation of works by Beethoven, Lortie has performed the complete Beethoven sonatas in London’s Wigmore Hall, Toronto’s Ford Center, Berlin Philharmonie, and the Sala Grande del Conservatorio Giuseppe Verdi in Milan. In Berlin, Die Welt called his performances “possibly the most beautiful Beethoven since the times of Wilhelm Kempff.” With the Montreal and Quebec Symphonies, he performed and conducted all five Beethoven Piano Concertos. In the Beethoven Plus Festival, Lortie performed Beethoven’s 32 sonatas for piano; plus the complete sonatas and trios with violin and cello. He opened the Bonn Beethoven Festival in 2003 playing Beethoven’s Fourth Concerto with Kurt Masur conducting, and since then has established a particularly fruitful partnership with Masur. They performed together with the New York Philharmonic, the Cleveland Orchestra, the LPO at Royal Festival Hall and in Paris and Vienna’s Musikverein with the Orchestre National de France. Future plans include concerts together with the Chicago Symphony, the Dresden Staatskappelle and the Santa Cecilia Orchestra in Rome. In May, 2008, Lortie concluded his multi-year project with the Montreal Symphony to play and conduct all 27 Mozart Piano Concertos (along with other all-orchestral repertoire by various composers). Last season he performed a multi-concert Wagner/Liszt project at London’s Wigmore Hall, which he also performed it in Berlin, Milan, Domain Forget, the Weimar Festival, Bordeaux and Warsaw. He regularly play/conducts programs for the Vancouver Symphony, the Quebec Symphony and the Hamburg Symphony. Notable concerts last season included the Saint Louis Symphony, the Cleveland Orchestra in Cleveland and on tour, the Warsaw Philharmonic, the Toronto Symphony, the Atlanta Symphony, a European tour with the BBC Wales, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Cincinnati Symphony, the Dresden Festival, the NACO, and many important recitals including the complete Chopin Etudes at the Kennedy Center, in Weimar, London, Milan and for the Cliburn Foundation. Future concerts include the Chicago Symphony, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Sydney Symphony, the Dallas Symphony, the Bournemouth Symphony, the Baltimore Symphony, the Seattle Symphony, the RAI Torino, the Dresden Staatskappelle, the Santa Cecilia in Rome, and recitals at the Vienna Konzerthaus, Amsterdam’s Concergebouw, UC Berkeley, Duke University, Toronto, the Gilmore Festival and Atlanta’s Spivey Hall. His regular piano-duo partner is fellow Canadian Helene Mercier, with whom he has made successful recordings on the Chandos label. Lortie has made over 30 recordings on the Chandos label, ranging from Mozart to Stravinsky. His recording of Beethoven’s Eroica Variations won the Edison Award, and his disc of Schumann’s Bunte Blatter and other works by Schumann and Brahms was named one of the best CDs of the year by BBC Music Magazine. He has recorded Ravel’s complete works for piano and has almost completed the 32 Beethoven sonatas. His recording of the complete Chopin Etudes, opp. 10 and 25, has been cited by BBC Music Magazine’s special Piano Issue as one of “50 Recordings by Superlative Pianists.” Lortie’s most recent CD release is the final recording in his three-CD series of Liszt’s complete works for piano and orchestra with the Residentie Orchestra of The Hague. It was immediately named “Editor’s Choice” by Gramophone Magazine. In addition to the current Liszt recordings, other recent releases include To the Distant Beloved, with works by Beethoven, Schumann and Liszt, and Franck’s Symphonic Variations with the BBC Symphony. In 1984, he won First Prize in the Busoni Competition and was a prize-winner at the Leeds Competition. In 1992 he was named Officer of the Order of Canada, and received both the Order of Quebec and an honorary doctorate from Laval University. As his schedule permits, he teaches at Italy’s renowned piano institute at Imola. Lortie has lived in Berlin since 1997 and also has a home in Canada.

    One of the largest natural amphitheaters in the world, with a seating capacity of nearly 18,000, the HOLLYWOOD BOWL has been the summer home of the Los Angeles Philharmonic since its official opening in 1922, and is home to the best and brightest in all genres of music. The 2004 season introduced audiences to a revitalized Hollywood Bowl, featuring a newly-constructed shell and stage and the addition of four stadium screens enhancing stage views in the venue. To this day, $1 buys a seat at the top of the Bowl for many of the Los Angeles Philharmonic's concerts. While the Bowl is best known for its sizzling summer nights, during the day California's youngest patrons enjoy "SummerSounds: Music for Kids at the Hollywood Bowl," the Southland's most popular summer arts festival for children, now in its 42nd season. In January 2009, the Hollywood Bowl was named Best Major Outdoor Concert Venue for the fifth year in a row at the 20th Annual Pollstar Concert Industry Awards; the Bowl's summer music festival has become as much a part of a Southern California summer as beaches and barbecues, the Dodgers, and Disneyland.

    EDITORS PLEASE NOTE:

    TUESDAY, AUGUST 11, 2009, AT 8 PM

    THURSDAY, AUGUST 13, 2009, AT 8 PM


    HOLLYWOOD BOWL, 2301 N. Highland Ave.



    LOS ANGELES PHILHARMONIC

    NICHOLAS McGEGAN, conductor

    LOUIS LORTIE, piano



    ALL-MOZART



    Overture to The Marriage of Figaro

    Piano Concerto No. 23 in A, K. 488

    Symphony No. 40 in G minor, K. 550



    The August 11 Performance is a Fidelity Investments FutureStage Concert; August 11 Media Sponsor: KUSC

    Tickets ($1 - $96) are on sale now at HollywoodBowl.com, at the Hollywood Bowl Box Office (Tuesday–Saturday, 12 p.m.–6 p.m.), or by calling Ticketmaster at 800.745.3000, and at all Ticketmaster outlets. Groups of 10 or more may be eligible for a 20% discount, subject to availability; call 323.850.2050 for further details or group sales. For general information or to request a brochure, call 323.850.2000.

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  • contact:

    Sophie Jefferies, sjefferies@laphil.org, 213.972.3422; Lisa White, lwhite@laphil.org, 213.972.3408; For photos: 213.972.3034