The Los Angeles Philharmonic has announced its spectacular 2017-18 season at Walt Disney Concert Hall. The new season includes 23 commissions and 22 world premieres. Audiences will experience performances by celebrated artists from around the world, from Yo-Yo Ma and Itzhak Perlman to Café Tacvba and Leslie Odom, Jr.
The New York Times classical music editor, Zachary Woolfe shared his excitement: "Going through the calendar for next season and marking the events I don’t just want to see but feel I really need to see — the ones I would fly across the country for in a heartbeat — I ended up with more than 10."
Woolfe goes much further in his praise, declaring: "The Los Angeles Philharmonic is the most important orchestra in America. Period." With the LA Phil celebrating its centennial in 2019, Woolfe notes, "(The LA Phil) presents a greater sense of the diversity of today’s music and its creators than any other orchestra. It ties its mission to education and social justice in its city more than any other orchestra. And, yes, more than any other orchestra, it combines a commitment to the future with a fresh eye on the past."
Read on for highlights of the 2017-18 season of the Los Angeles Philharmonic at Walt Disney Concert Hall.
Opening Night (Sept. 26, 2017)
The 2017-18 season kicks off in grand fashion with the Opening Night Gala. LA Phil Music & Artistic Director Gustavo Dudamel will work his magic from the podium, conducting the Los Angeles Philharmonic in an all-Mozart program.
CDMX (October 2017)
Ciudad de Mexico (CDMX), a city of nearly nine million people, has one of the most vibrant contemporary music communities in the world, with rich musical traditions going back centuries. In October, Gustavo Dudamel and the LA Phil will offer a window into this colorful music scene with performances of orchestral, jazz, pop and film music. The CDMX festival will include Mexrrissey, La Sonora Santanera, percussionist Antonio Sanchez, Natalia Lafourcade and Café Tacvba, which will perform with a full orchestra for the first time.
CDMX is part of Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA, an extraordinary Getty Foundation collaborative project featuring more than 70 exhibitions and programs that will showcase Latino and Latin American art.
"Phantom of the Opera" (Oct. 31, 2017)
An L.A. Halloween tradition returns with a screening of The Phantom of the Opera, the classic 1925 silent horror film starring Lon Chaney in the iconic title role. Organ virtuoso Clark Wilson will perform an appropriately atmospheric soundtrack on Walt Disney Concert Hall’s magnificent pipe organ.
"War of the Worlds" (Nov. 12, 2017)
Directed by LA Phil artist-collaborator, Yuval Sharon, the world premiere of War of the Worlds promises to be one of the biggest events of the season. War of the Worlds is a mind-blowing collaboration of individuals and institutions presented simultaneously at Walt Disney Concert Hall and at sites across L.A. Produced in collaboration with The Industry and Now Art.
Bernstein 100 (November 2017 - April 2018)
During the worldwide centennial celebrations of Leonard Bernstein, the LA Phil will mount a production of his rarely performed Mass (Feb. 1-4, 2018), an enormous theatrical piece for singers, players and dancers, conducted by Gustavo Dudamel and staged by director Elkhanah Pulitzer. Programs also include two screenings of the Academy Award-winning 1961 film, West Side Story with live orchestral accompaniment (Nov. 24 & 26, 2017); Serenade with Hilary Hahn (Dec. 1-3); and Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms (April 19-22, 2018).
Deck the Hall (December 2017)
Highlights of the beloved Deck the Hall series include the Holiday Sing-Along (Dec. 16); the ever-popular, A Chanticleer Christmas (Dec. 19); one of the world's premier jazz vocalists, Dianne Reeves (Dec. 20); a cappella sensations, Naturally 7 (Dec. 22); and a sing-along screening of the 1954 holiday classic, White Christmas.
Leslie Odom, Jr. (Dec. 8, 2017)
His portrayal of Aaron Burr in Hamilton on Broadway earned Leslie Odom, Jr. a Tony Award® for Best Actor in a Musical. Odom, Jr. will perform songs from his recent self-titled debut album and a selection of holiday favorites, backed by a four-piece combo.
The Oscar Concert (Feb. 28, 2018)
As part of Oscar® Week celebrations for the 90th anniversary of the Academy Awards, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences® is partnering with the LA Phil to present the year’s nominated scores live in concert. Thomas Wilkins will lead a celebration of the history of film music, including suites and video clips from each Oscar-nominated film.
Jazz highlights of the 2017-18 season include: LA Phil’s Creative Chair for Jazz, Herbie Hancock (Jan. 27, 2018); John Beasley Presents MONK'estra, celebrating the 100th birthday of legendary pianist Thelonious Monk (March 9, 2018); Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra featuring Chick Corea (March 23, 2018); and Crosscurrents (April 27, 2018), a concert that bridges jazz and the music of India, featuring renowned tabla virtuoso Zakir Hussain, bassist Dave Holland, acclaimed sax player Chris Potter and superstar composer/vocalist Shankar Mahadevan.
Experience world music with international artists such as acclaimed Irish singer-songwriter Glen Hansard (The Swell Season, The Frames), who returns to Walt Disney Concert Hall for two performances on March 10 and March 11, 2018. (The latter concert will be a very special evening with the LA Phil.) On April 28, enjoy the high-energy electro-rock-tango music of Argentine and Uruguayan collective, Bajofondo.
Mahler's "Song of the Earth" (April 5-7, 2018)
Leonard Bernstein described Das Paradies und die Peri ("Song of the Earth") as Mahler's "greatest symphony." Mahler’s penultimate completed work was inspired by a volume of ancient Chinese poetry that was published a year after a summer of personal tragedy and professional setbacks for the composer. In a first for the LA Phil, the performances will be staged by Yuval Sharon in conjunction with TEATROCINEMA, a Chilean theater company renowned for innovative interaction between video and live performers.