Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Being Present at the Creation - Part 1

Listen for Life Executive Director Andy Anderson and I are currently in Los Angeles for a series of tightly scheduled meetings, but yesterday we had the tremendous honor of being invited to attend a special Disney Concert Hall rehearsal of Gustavo Dudamel conducting the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Los Angeles Master Chorale, excellent vocal soloists, and some unbelievably strong dancers, as they developed together (under the brilliant creative direction of the renowned Peter Sellars) a new "theatrically enhanced" version of composer John Adam's latest opera work, "The Gospel According to the Other Mary".

We were attending with the very creative Houston-based arts impressario Arpad Lamell, whose brother, violinist and conductor Guido Lamell, plays in the orchestra. All of us were completely overwhelmed by the power, beauty, creativity, and deeply moving impression that the trio of John Adams, Peter Sellars and Gustavo Dudamel were able to bring to life as an artistic and spiritual gift for all peoples, now or in the future. At one point Arpad turned to me and said "I feel like I am personally witnessing the creation of the world" and indeed that is what it felt like and what I believe it will feel like, for audiences experiencing the completed performance as well, whether in California or New York or London or Europe - all locations that the tremendous and innovative LA Philharmonic players will be generously bringing this incredible piece and production to in the coming weeks. 
If you are going to be (or can get yourself) to ANY of those listed locations this month, and you can manage to somehow beg, borrow or steal a ticket (I know that many locations are already sold out) PLEASE please do all in your power to get there and experience this powerfully moving, inspiring and ground breaking production. 

I want to share more about this unforgettable experience -  but for now, I will simply link to a page on the LA Philharmonic website and quote a bit from their own ticket page.

"When the LA Phil premiered The Gospel According to the Other Mary in concert form last season, “it got a masterpiece that will be part of its legacy,” according to Mark Swed in his Los Angeles Times review. Just as the extraordinary El Niño was John Adams’ take on a Nativity oratorio, so The Gospel According to the Other Mary(now presented in a theatrical setting) is his dramatically robust vision of a Passion, with its text drawn by Peter Sellars from Biblical stories of Lazarus and Jesus, contextualized with excerpts from the memoir of social activist Dorothy Day and poetry by Louise Erdrich, Rosario Castellanos, Primo Levi, Hildegard von Bingen, and Rubén Dario.

Come for:

Fiercely free-thinking director Peter Sellars’ world-premiere staging of this important new work, which Dudamel and the LA Phil take on tour to New York and Europe."

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