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Saturday, February 6

Brian Stokes Mitchell

Walt Disney Concert Hall

Los Angeles, CA 90012


Dubbed Broadways Last Leading Man by The New York Times, Brian Stokes Mitchell has enjoyed a rich and varied career on Broadway, television and film, in the recording studio and in concert performances. On his most recent record, Simply Broadway, Stokes powerhouse baritone brings storytelling and drama to great heights on favorite classics of the Broadway canon, from Camelot, Porgy and Bess and Company to Man of La Mancha, South Pacific and Les Misrables.

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Ravel's Bolero

Long Beach Performing Arts Center

300 E. Ocean Blvd., Long Beach, 90802


On this evening we explore music of the late Romantic and early Impressionist periods, beginning with Saint-Saens exotic Bacchanale from his opera Samson et Delila, in which Delilah leads a wild and provocative dance to taunt Samson. The piece opens with a beguiling, mid-eastern sounding oboe solo before a steady pulse develops in the orchestra with percussion emphasizing the action. Following that, our virtuoso Principal cellist, Ccilia Tsan, who is known for her powerful and sensitive performances, takes the spotlight in Saint-Saens Cello Concerto #1, composed in 1872. Then Ravels Rapsodie espagnole a reflection of the Spanish musical heritage imparted to Ravel by his Basque mother - opens the second half with a foreboding descending 4-note theme that is carried through, building to a tremendous climax at the end with pulsating Spanish dance rhythms, castanets and tambourine. Also reflective of Ravels love of Spanish music is his Alborada del gracioso (Morning Song of the Jester); a technically challenging, highly spirited and humorous dance that concludes with a grand and glorious racket. The evening culminates with Ravels legendary Bolro, which is built over an unchanging rhythm played on snare drums while melodies rise and fall over the top with ever-changing instrumentation. This piece was made popular in the 1979 film, 10.

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