PRESS CONTACT: Helane Anderson
LA PHIL presents a WWI commemorative orchestral concert with OCYSO and YMF on Sunday, January 10, 2016 at 7:30PM as part of the prestigious SOUNDS ABOUT TOWN series including the U.S. Premiere of Mark-Anthony Turnage’s PASSCHENDAELE
LACMA hosts a chamber music concert as part of “Sundays Live” with OCYSO and YMF musicians featuring works by Schoenberg and Ravel and a World Premiere orchestration of Ives songs by composer Vera Ivanova Sunday, January 17 at 6PM
Los Angeles’s Central Library hosts a panel discussion in the Mark Taper Auditorium from 2-4 on Sunday, January 10 featuring a distinguished panel including WWI historian Dr. Jennifer Keene, poet and former NEA Chairman Dana Gioia with President and Artistic Director of the Philharmonic Society of Orange County John Mangum
British composer Mark-Anthony Turnage’s work Passchendaele will be given its U.S. Premiere at the Walt Disney Concert Hall on January 10. This work was commissioned to commemorate the centenary of the outbreak of the war and comes on the heels of two previous works the composer has written about WWI. "The main thing the centenary should do is make you think for yourself," the composer says. "The young musicians that will play the piece in Birmingham and L.A. are very distant from the First World War, but they should know what happened and make their own minds up for their generation." The other works on the program include Carl Nielsen's Fourth Symphony, “The Inextinguishable” which was composed during World War I, and Ives’s well-known “The Unanswered Question” drawing us into contemplation and questions about war that often go unanswered, further encouraging one to explore one’s own response to conflict. In the words of composer Nielsen, “Music is life, and, like life, inextinguishable."
Prior to the WDCH performance, there will be a symposium featuring a distinguished panel of guests presented by LA’s Central Library downtown in the Mark Taper Auditorium from 2:00-4:00PM. The discussion will feature distinguished WWI historian and Professor at Chapman University Dr. Jennifer Keene, acclaimed poet, Professor of Poetry and Public Culture at USC and former chairman of the NEA Dana Gioia, and President and Artistic Director of the Philharmonic Society of Orange County John Mangum. Through literary and musical perspectives, the discussion will take us on a journey through differing artistic responses to war.
Finally, the commemoration will culminate with a featured performance at LACMA as part of Sundays Live with performers from both OCYSO and YMF in a special event exploring music written around WWI interspersed with readings of war letters to draw the audience further into that time period. This performance will feature a World Premiere orchestration by composer Vera Ivanova of Ives’s Three Songs of War, sung by a member of LA Opera’s Domingo-Colburn-Stein Young Artist Program alongside selections from Schoenberg’s Chamber Symphony No. 2 and Verklarte Nacht and Ravel’s Tombeau de Couperin.
“I consider artistic collaboration as a cornerstone of my tenure as music director of OCYSO”, says Daniel Alfred Wachs. “Under my leadership, OCYSO has collaborated with the Mozarteum Orchestra of Salzburg in a side-by-side at the Renée & Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall where we presented the U.S. Premiere of a work by Kurt Schwertsik; and with Chapman University, and the University of California-Irvine. We are now thrilled to be working with YMF, enabling us to present the U.S. Premiere and OCYSO co-commission of Mark Anthony Turnage’s Passchendaele to a wider audience in both Orange County and in Los Angeles. We are honored that the Los Angeles Philharmonic is presenting us on this prestigious series.”
“YMF's partnership with OCYSO is unique in its scope, showcasing not only the combined power of our orchestras, but also featuring the voices of our individual musicians through the intimate chamber performance. We look forward to the challenges this repertoire presents, first for our musicians, who will heighten their awareness of ensemble playing, as well as achieve individual artistic growth. Finally, we look forward to their performance revealing the visions of our three composers, reminding future generations of the tragedy that was the First World War,” states Julia Gaskill, Executive Director of YMF.
For more information, please visit http://blog.ocyso.org/world-war-i-a-centenary-perspective/.
WWI: A CENTENARY PERSPECTIVE: PANEL DISCUSSION AND SYMPOSIUM
Sunday, January 10, 2016, 2-4PM
LA Central Library, Mark Taper Auditorium
630 W. 5th Street
Los Angeles, CA 90071
Jennifer Keene (Professor at Chapman University and renowned WWI Historian)
Dana Gioia (Acclaimed Poet, Professor of Poetry & Culture at USC, Former Chairman of the NEA)
John Mangum (President and Artistic Director, Philharmonic Society of Orange County)
Free and open to the public.
To RSVP, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
WWI: A CENTENARY PERSPECTIVE: LA PHIL SOUNDS ABOUT TOWN
Sunday, January 10, 2016, 7:30PM
Walt Disney Concert Hall
111 South Grand Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90012
The Orange County Youth Symphony Orchestra
Daniel Alfred Wachs, music director and conductor
Young Musicians Foundation Debut Orchestra
Yuga Cohler, music director and conductor
IVES: The Unanswered Question
TURNAGE: Passchendaele (U.S. Premiere, OCYSO co-commission)
NIELSEN: Symphony No. 4, “The Inextinguishable”
Tickets available at www.ocyso.org
WWI: A CENTENARY PERSPECTIVE: LACMA SUNDAYS LIVE Chamber Music & Ensemble Performance featuring War Letter Readings
Sunday, January 17, 2016, 6PM
LACMA Sundays Live
5905 Wilshire Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90036
Performers from OCYSO and YMF
Daniel Alfred Wachs, conductor
Soprano TBD, LA Opera Domingo-Colburn-Stein Young Artist Program
Guest reader TBD
SCHOENBERG: Verklarte Nacht, original sextet version (selection)
RAVEL: Tombeau de Couperin, arr. for Wind Quintet (selection)
IVES: Three Songs of War (World Premiere orchestration by Vera Ivanova)
SCHOENBERG: Chamber Symphony No. 2, movement II
*Program will include readings of WWI war letters chosen and curated by
Daniel Alfred Wachs
Performance is free and open to the public
The Orange County Youth Symphony Orchestra (OCYSO), now in its 46th season, is the official youth orchestra of Orange County, CA. Deemed “the real thing” by The Los Angeles Times, OCYSO is the winner of the 2012 American Prize in Orchestral Performance—Youth Orchestra Division. Music Director & Conductor Daniel Alfred Wachs has led OCYSO through many prestigious performances including US and West Coast premieres by composers such as Mark-Anthony Turnage and Kurt Schwertsik, European tours and a season-long project with Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 culminating in a documentary entitled “Beethoven’s Ninth: Journey to Joy” that was selected by PBS SoCal for multiple broadcasts. OCYSO’s mission, to introduce music into the lives of young people, is fulfilled in part through its acclaimed “Concerts for Fifth Graders,” in the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts, conducted and developed by Wachs. This series, “kids playing for kids,” presented by the Philharmonic Society of Orange County, has provided music education for more than a million students over twenty-five years. Additionally, OCYSO presents a concert series in the historic Memorial Hall Auditorium at Chapman University, and will soon move into the new $85 million Musco Center for the Arts opening in spring 2016. Highlights of the 2015-16 Season include a first-ever family concert at the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall and a season-long collaboration with the Young Musicians Foundation Debut Orchestra (YMF Debut) of Los Angeles. This collaborative concert with YMF, presented by the Los Angeles Philharmonic on its prestigious Sounds About Town series at the Walt Disney Concert Hall, will feature the United States premiere of Mark Anthony Turnage’s Passachendaele, an OCYSO co-commission with the City of Birmingham Symphony Youth Orchestra and the Concertgebouw Brugge. In addition, musicians from both OCYSO and YMF-Debut will perform on the Los Angeles County Museum of Art’s (LACMA) Sundays Live Series.
Conductor Daniel Alfred Wachs emerged on the international scene following his debut with the Mozarteum Orchestra of Salzburg in November 2010, leading a world première by Toshio Hosokawa at the Grosses Festspielhaus. The Austrian press praised: “Engaging, rhythmically inspired, precise in its execution, the “Mambo” was equal to a performance by Gustavo Dudamel and the Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra!” Wachs has guest conducted Orange County’s Pacific Symphony, the Auckland Philharmonia, the National Symphony Orchestra (as part of the National Conducting Institute), the Sarasota Orchestra, the Fort Worth Symphony, Sinfonia Gulf Coast, the Oakland East Bay Symphony, the Monterey Symphony, the Spartanburg Philharmonic, and New York City Ballet at Lincoln Center. Wachs has also served as assistant conductor at the Cincinnati Opera and for the French première of Bernstein’s Candide at the Théâtre du Châtelet, a Robert Carsen co-production with La Scala and the English National Opera. He has conducted the West Coast Premiere of Mark-Anthony Turnage’s “Frieze” with the Orange County Youth Symphony, a co-commission with the New York Philharmonic and the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain. In 2015, Wachs makes his debut on the acclaimed new music series Jacaranda: Music at the Edge in Santa Monica conducting works by Weill and Stravinsky. A pianist as well as a conductor, Wachs’ performance with the Minnesota Orchestra “proved a revelation, delivering a technically impeccable, emotionally powerful performance of two Mozart piano concertos and a pair of solo works,” raved the St. Paul Pioneer Press. Wachs graduated from both The Curtis Institute of Music and The Juilliard School and has also participated at such festivals at Aspen, Tanglewood and Verbier. Wachs has also been entrusted with preparing orchestras for Valery Gergiev to Vladimir Spivakov, and has served as Assistant Conductor to Osmo Vänskä at the Minnesota Orchestra and at the National Orchestra of France under Kurt Masur. Committed to the cause of music education, Wachs leads the Orange County Youth Symphony Orchestra (OCYSO) and is Music Director of The Chapman Orchestra at Chapman University. Of a recent OCYSO performance, The Los Angeles Times states, “The performance was smashing thanks in no small part to the exceptionally well-practiced pre-professionals.” www.danielalfredwachs.com
For 60 years, Young Musicians Foundation (YMF) has unified communities through exceptional classical music experiences. We provide opportunities for youth of all socio-economic and ethnic backgrounds to cultivate their abilities and passion for music during the pivotal formative years of their development. By expanding access to quality musical education and performances, we nurture creativity and emotional expression, enriching quality of life and fostering current and future audiences.
To encourage long-term involvement, our comprehensive, interconnected programs meet musicians' evolving needs, providing an introduction to musical instruments and technique, in addition to scholarships and performance opportunities for advanced students embarking on professional careers. YMF offers eight programs: the Debut Orchestra, the Teaching Artist Program, the Music Director and Conductor-in-Residence Position, Music 360°, the Debut Concerto Competition, the Chamber Music Series, the David Weiss Scholarship Program, and the Composers’ Workshop. YMF’s flagship program, the Debut Orchestra, is the second oldest pre-professional training orchestra in the United States, comprised of approximately 70 talented musicians ages 15-25 from around the Los Angeles area. Orchestra members are selected each year through blind auditions adjudicated by eminent Los Angeles-based musicians, including members of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and receive scholarships to support their studies. World-renowned conductors Michael Tilson Thomas, Andre Previn and Myung-Whun Chung, are among talented musicians who received the prestigious YMF Conductor-in-Residence and Music Director Fellowships as young students. Yuga Cohler joins the ranks of these renowned conductors with the launch of his three-year appointment as YMF’s Music Director 2015-2018. The Debut Orchestra’s rich history also includes more than 44 world premieres, including works by such renowned composers as Aaron Copland, Igor Stravinsky, Ingolf Dahl, Michael Torke, Paul Chihara, and up and coming composers Paul Dooley and Brendan Faegre.
Yuga Cohler is the newly appointed Music Director and Conductor of the Young Musicians Foundation Debut Orchestra in Los Angeles. Recognized as one of the most promising conductors of his generation, he was awarded a Career Assistance Award by the Solti Foundation U.S. in 2015. He serves as New York City Director of the Asia / America New Music Institute, and from 2013 – 2015 was the Music Director of the Weill Cornell Medical College Orchestra. Mr. Cohler is the youngest graduate of the Juilliard School’s Master of Music program in orchestral conducting. A recipient of the Bruno Walter Memorial Scholarship, he studied with New York Philharmonic Music Director Alan Gilbert and worked extensively with the Juilliard Orchestra, with whom he made his professional debut in 2013. Since then, he has worked in various capacities with the Dallas, Baltimore, Fort Worth, New Jersey, New World, and New Amsterdam Symphony Orchestras. Mr. Cohler has been awarded fellowships to the American Academy of Conducting at Aspen under Robert Spano, the Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music under Marin Alsop, and the Salzburg Festival, where he was selected by members of the Vienna Philharmonic for a residency as the Ansbacher Fellow. Elsewhere, he has participated in masterclasses given by Bernard Haitink, Michael Tilson-Thomas, and Christoph von Dohnányi, and this past summer, he attended the conducting seminar at the Tanglewood Music Center. In 2013, Mr. Cohler was chosen by John Adams and David Robertson to perform a program of modern American orchestral works at Carnegie Hall. Prior to his graduate studies, Mr. Cohler held the music directorship of the Harvard University Bach Society Orchestra, a post formerly occupied by his teacher, Alan Gilbert.
Jennifer D. Keene is a specialist in American military experience during World War I. She has published three books on the American involvement in the First World War: Doughboys, the Great War and the Remaking of America (2001), World War I: The American Soldier Experience (2011), and The United States and the First World War (2000). She is also the lead author for an American history textbook, Visions of America: A History of the United States that uses a visual approach to teaching students U.S. history. She has received numerous awards for her scholarship, including Fulbright Senior Scholar Awards to France and Australia and Mellon Library of Congress Fellowship in International Studies. She served as an associate editor for the Encyclopedia of War and American Society (2005) which won the Society of Military History's prize for best military history reference book. She co-edited, along with Michael Neiberg of Finding Common Ground: New Directions in First World War Studies (2011). In 2011 she won the Jack Miller Center Prize for the best military or diplomatic history essay published in Historically Speaking. She has published numerous essays and journal articles on the war, served as an historical consultant for exhibits and films, and as an associate editor of the Journal of First World War Studies. She is currently working on several projects related to the upcoming centennial of World War I, including a new synthesis of the American experience during the war under contract with Oxford University Press. She is also a general editor for the “1914-1918-online,” peer-reviewed online encyclopedia, http://www.1914-1918-online.net/, a major digital humanities project.
Dana Gioia is an internationally acclaimed poet and critic. He is the author of four collections of poetry, including Interrogations at Noon (2001), which won the American Book Award, and Pity the Beautiful (2012). He has also published three collections of criticism, most notably Can Poetry Matter? (1992), which was a finalist for the National Book Critics Award. A best-selling literary anthologist, Gioia has edited or co-edited over two dozen collections of poetry, fiction, and drama. He has also written three opera libretti and has collaborated with composers in genres ranging from classical to jazz and rock. For six years (2003-2009) Gioia served as Chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts where he gained strong bipartisan support for the previously imperiled agency and helped launch the largest literary programs in federal history, including The Big Read, Poetry Out Loud, and Shakespeare in American Communities. He was twice unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate. During the NEA years Gioia also led the U.S. cultural delegation to UNESCO. For two years he directed the arts and culture programs for the Aspen Institute in Washington, D.C. and Colorado. In 2011 Gioia became the Judge Widney Professor of Poetry and Public Culture at the University of Southern California. He has been awarded eleven honorary doctorates and many awards, including the Laetare Medal from Notre Dame, the Presidential Civilian Medal, and the Aiken-Taylor Award in Modern American Poetry. He divides his time between Los Angeles and Sonoma County, California. His new and selected poems will appear from Graywolf Press in 2016.
John Mangum is the President and Artistic Director of the Philharmonic Society of Orange County. In this capacity, he works with the Philharmonic’s Board of Directors, its volunteers, and its staff to further its mission to present performances of the highest quality and provide dynamic and innovative music education programs to the Southern California community. Mangum has held several senior artistic planning roles at major American orchestras. Most recently, he served as Director of Artistic Planning at the San Francisco Symphony, where he worked with Music Director Michael Tilson Thomas to shape the Symphony’s overall artistic profile through the selection of repertoire, projects, and artistic collaborators.
Prior to San Francisco, Mangum worked as Artistic Administrator for the New York Philharmonic and as Vice President for Artistic Planning at The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra. He started his career in 1999 at the Los Angeles Philharmonic, where he worked as the staff program annotator and later as Artistic Administrator, developing the Orchestra’s programs at the Hollywood Bowl as well as a variety of concerts and projects at Walt Disney Concert Hall. As a freelance writer, Mangum has written notes and articles for a variety of record labels, orchestras, presenters, and festivals, most recently as an annual contributor to the program books of the Salzburg Festival. He holds a Ph.D. in history with a field in musicology, in addition to master’s and bachelor’s degrees in history, all from the University of California, Los Angeles.
Vera Ivanova's compositions have been described as "...humanistic and deeply felt works... " (John Bilotta, Society of Composers, Inc.) and "the greatest power of her brief, angular, crystalline music lies in its power to provoke the gods of symmetry" (Laurence Vittes, Lark Gallery Online Blog). Dr. Ivanova is a recipient of the Sproull Fellowship at Eastman, the Gwyn Ellis Bequest Scholarship at Guildhall School, Moscow Culture Committee and American Composers Forum Subito grants, Honourable mention at the 28th Bourges Electro-Acoustic Competition, 3rd Prize at the 8th International Mozart Competition, 1st Prize in Category "A" at International Contest of Acousmatic Compositions Métamorphoses 2004 (Belgium), the ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composers Award, the André Chevillion-Yvonne Bonnaud Composition Prize at the 8th International Piano Competition at Orléans (France), among others. Vera Ivanova graduated from the Moscow Conservatory (Honours Diploma), Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London (MM with distinction), and the Eastman School of Music (Ph.D. in Composition). Her works have been performed in Russia, Europe and the U.S.A. She is currently Assistant Professor of Music in the College of Performing Arts at Chapman University (Orange, CA), where she currently works at the rank of Associate Professor.