LSM Newswire

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra’s Westside Connections features Tony Award-winning actor John Rubinstein and pianists Jeffrey Kahane and Christopher O’riley with music of Rachmaninoff, Chopin and Brahms

“LA Influential” Is 2014 Thematic Twist
for Orchestra’s Innovative Chamber Music Series
Thursday, May 15, 2014, 7:30 pm
Moss Theater, Santa Monica 

Prolific film, stage and television actor, director and composer John Rubinstein, a native Angeleno and son of legendary pianist Arthur Rubinstein, appears with Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra (LACO) Music Director and pianist Jeffrey Kahane, LACO principals and special guest pianist Christopher O’Riley to explore personal and musical legacies at Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra’s (LACO) WESTSIDE CONNECTIONS chamber music series on Thursday, May 15, 2014, 7:30 pm, at the Moss Theater in Santa Monica.  Rubinstein created the role of Bob Fosse's Pippin on Broadway and received a Tony Award for Children of a Lesser God, and O’Riley is a versatile pianist as well as host of the popular NPR radio program “From the Top."  They join LACO Music Director Jeffrey Kahane, Concertmaster Margaret Batjer and Principal Cello Andrew Shulman in a performance that pays homage to the remarkable legacy of both Rubinsteins and features Rachmaninoff’s Sonata in G minor (Shulman and Kahane), Chopin’s Nocturne in D-flat major Op. 27, No. 2 (Kahane), and Brahms' Piano Trio No. 2 in C major, Op. 87 (Batjer, Shulman and O’Riley).
The concert also serves as a reunion of sorts for Kahane and O’Riley, who were both finalists in the 6th International Van Cliburn Piano Competition in 1981.  In another connection, Kahane was the Grand Prize winner at the 1983 Arthur Rubinstein International competition, the first to be held after Rubinstein’s death.
The three-part series, with “LA Influential” as this year's thematic twist, examines the impact our diverse city has had on arts and culture through the eyes of distinguished guest artists and speakers.  LACO Concertmaster and series curator Margaret Batjer has programmed evenings that showcase the virtuosic artistry of LACO musicians in chamber masterpieces, reflecting the compelling LA connections and inspirations that have deeply influenced the series' special guests.  Westside Connections, now in its sixth season, featured Arnold Steinhardt, acclaimed first violin of the illustrious Guarneri Quartet, in February, and Culture Clash political satirist Richard Montoya in April.

Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra is considered one of the world’s premier chamber orchestras as well as a leader in presenting wide-ranging repertoire and adventurous commissions.  Its 2013-14 season, the Orchestra's 45th, features a compelling mix of beloved masterpieces and genre-defying premieres from firmly established and notable up-and-coming composers programmed by Jeffrey Kahane, one of the world’s foremost conductors and pianists, who marks his 17th season as LACO’s music director.  

Tickets (beginning at $50) are available online at, by calling LACO at 213 622 7001, or at the venue box office on the night of the concert, if tickets remain.  Student rush tickets ($10), based on availability, may be purchased at the box office one hour before the concert.  Also available for college students is the $25 “Campus to Concert Hall All Access Pass” – good for LACO’s three Westside Connections concerts at the Moss Theater, seven Orchestral Series concerts at either the Alex Theatre or UCLA’s Royce Hall and Discover Beethoven’s Eroica at Ambassador Auditorium.  Discounted tickets are also available by phone for groups of 12 or more.  The Moss Theater at New Roads School is located at 3131 Olympic Boulevard, Santa Monica, CA, 90404.

JOHN RUBINSTEIN created the title role in the Broadway musical Pippin, won Tony and Drama Desk Awards for Children of a Lesser God, and also appeared on Broadway in Ragtime, M. Butterfly, Fools, Hurlyburly, Love Letters and The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial.  He appeared Off-Broadway in Rosencrantz & Guildenstern, and Counsellor-at-Law (Lucille Lortel Award), and on Los Angeles stages in Wicked, The Tempest, Camelot, Sight Unseen and Streamers.  His films include 21 Grams, Red Dragon and Another Stakeout.  Among his TV series are Crazy Like a Fox and Family for which he received and Emmy nomination.  His credits as stage director include Phantasie, Nightingale, The Old Boy, The Rover, Les Liaisons Dangereuses, Company, A Little Night Music, Into the Woods, On The Town, and City of Angels.  For television, he directed A Matter of Conscience, receiving an Emmy Award for Best Children’s Special.  As a film composer, he is known for his work on Jeremiah Johnson, The Candidate, The Dollmaker and Amber Waves.  Rubinstein currently teaches acting and directing at USC.

CHRISTOPHER O’RILEY has stretched the piano beyond conventional boundaries through his groundbreaking transcriptions to his sublime interpretations of classical works.  As host of the popular NPR show From The Top, he works and performs with the next generation of brilliant young musicians.  He has appeared with the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields; the Los Angeles, New York, Moscow and the Royal philharmonic orchestras; and the Pittsburgh, Atlanta, Baltimore, Philadelphia and San Francisco symphonies.  As a young pianist, O’Riley received Leeds and Van Cliburn awards, as well as an Avery Fisher Career Grant.  He studied with Russell Sherman at the New England Conservatory of Music.

Equally at home at the keyboard and on the podium, JEFFREY KAHANE has established an international reputation as a truly versatile artist, recognized around the world for his mastery of diverse repertoire ranging from Bach, Mozart and Beethoven to Gershwin, Golijov and John Adams.  The 2013-14 season marks Kahane’s 17th season as the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra’s music director.  He previously served as music director of the Colorado and Santa Rosa symphonies.  He has garnered tremendous critical acclaim for his innovative programming and commitment to education and community involvement and received multiple ASCAP Awards for Adventurous Programming for his work in both Los Angeles and Denver.  In addition to his programs and projects with LACO, recent and upcoming engagements include appearances at the Aspen, Mostly Mozart, Ravinia, Blossom, Music@Menlo, Chamber Music Northwest and Oregon Bach festivals; recitals in Salt Lake City, Scottsdale, Carmel and at the Laguna Beach Festival; concerto performances with the Toronto, Indianapolis, Houston, Oregon and Colorado symphonies and the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra; play/conducting the Philadelphia Orchestra, the New York Philharmonic and the San Francisco, National, Vancouver, Seattle and New Jersey symphonies; and conducting the New England Conservatory Symphony Orchestra in Boston and the Juilliard Orchestra at Lincoln Center.  Kahane’s recent and upcoming European engagements include play/conduct programs with the Camerata Salzburg, Hamburg Symphony and the Real Filharmonía de Galicia in Spain as well as appearances at the Meck-Pomm Chamber Music Festival in Germany.

MARGARET BATJER, who has served as concertmaster of the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra since 1998, made her first solo appearance at the age of 15 with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. She has since soloed with a succession of major orchestras, including Philadelphia Orchestra and the St. Louis, Seattle and Dallas symphony orchestras. Batjer has performed with such European ensembles as the Chamber Orchestra of Europe, Prague Chamber Orchestra and Berlin Symphony Orchestra. As an esteemed chamber musician, she appears regularly at the Marlboro Music Festival, La Jolla Summerfest, Salzburg Festival, and Italy’s Naples and Cremona festivals. In 2008, she developed LACO’s acclaimed chamber music series, Westside Connections.
ANDREW SHULMAN was appointed principal cello of LACO in 2008 and has recently become a professor of violoncello at the University of Southern California. Shulman was the first British winner of the Piatigorsky Artist Award and was bestowed with an Honorary RCM by The Queen Mother in 1986. He was solo cello of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic and the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, first chair with London's Philharmonia Orchestra and principal cello of the Los Angeles Philharmonic. He has given recitals in the Royal Palace in Stockholm; in London at Wigmore Hall, Buckingham Palace and Royal Festival Hall; and locally at the Hollywood Bowl.

LOS ANGELES CHAMBER ORCHESTRA (LACO), proclaimed “America's finest chamber orchestra” by Public Radio International, has established itself among the world's top musical ensembles.  Since 1997, LACO has performed under the baton of acclaimed conductor and pianist Jeffrey Kahane, hailed by critics as “visionary” and “a conductor of uncommon intellect, insight and musical integrity” with “undeniable charisma.”  Under Kahane’s leadership, the Orchestra maintains its status as a preeminent interpreter of historical masterworks and a champion of contemporary composers.  During its 45-year history, the Orchestra has made 31 recordings, toured Europe, South America and Japan, performed across North America and garnered eight ASCAP Awards for Adventurous Programming.  Headquartered in downtown Los Angeles, LACO presents its Orchestral Series on Saturdays either at Pasadena’s Ambassador Auditorium or Glendale’s Alex Theatre and on Sundays at UCLA’s Royce Hall; Baroque Conversations at downtown Los Angeles’ Zipper Concert Hall; Westside Connections chamber music series, designed to illustrate the relationship between music and other artistic disciplines, at the Moss Theater in Santa Monica; and an annual Discover concert, which features an in-depth examination that sheds new light on a single piece of music, at Pasadena’s Ambassador Auditorium.  LACO also presents a Concert Gala, an annual Silent Film screening and several fundraising salons each year.  Additionally, LACO outreach programs Meet the Music, Community Partners, Campus to Concert Hall and the LACO/USC Thornton Strings Mentorship Program reach thousands of young people annually, nurturing future musicians and composers as well as inspiring a love of classical music.
Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra
Westside Connections
John Rubinstein, guest artist
Christopher O’Riley, special guest - piano
Jeffrey Kahane, piano
Margaret Batjer, curator & violin
Andrew Shulman, cello
Thursday, May 15, 2014, 7:30 pm
RACHMANINOFF     Sonata in G minor
CHOPIN             Nocturne in D-flat major, Op. 27, No. 2
BRAHMS             Piano Trio No. 2 in C major, Op. 87
Ann and Jerry Moss Theater
at New Roads School
3131 Olympic Boulevard
Santa Monica, CA 90404
213 622 7001 x 1
For further information about the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra’s 2013-14 season, please call 213 622 7001, or visit

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