SummerFest Music Director Cho-Liang Lin thought he had a coup signing up Los Angeles Opera’s Music Director James Conlon to conduct the 2013 SummerFest finale concert, that is until maestro Conlon bowed out for some emergency surgery. Fortunately, the estimable British conductor Raymond Leppard stepped in on short notice to lead the chamber orchestra in a glowing program of Mozart and Benjamin Britten.
La Jolla SummerFest’s Bach and Beyond III program (Wednesday, Aug. 21) drafted a chorus and four vocalists to consider both the trials of love in Brahms’ “Neues Liebeslieder Walzer,” Op. 65, and those of faith in J. S. Bach’s Sacred Cantata No. 99, “Was Gott tut, das ist wohlgetan.”
When it comes to commissioning new music, the odds for success are no better than those of the casual vacationer visiting a Las Vegas casino and hitting the jackpot. But La Jolla Music Society’s impressive three world premieres Friday (Aug. 16) at SummerFest 2013 beat those odds hands down and offered thrilling Bartók as a bonus.
Early music finally arrived in great style at La Jolla SummerFest Tuesday (Aug. 13) with a concert by Nicholas McGegan’s Arcadian Academy, a vibrant quintet of period instrumentalists under McGegan’s astute direction. These players served up a tasty buffet of sonatas by G. F. Handel and Henry Purcell, as well as a slew of lesser-known Italian and English 17th-century composers.
For the first time, SummerFest gave a concert in the intimate venue of The Loft at UC San Diego. This smart program of modernist chamber music performed by musicians in casual attire proved a resounding success Friday, Aug. 9. The only possible criticism would be the question, “Why didn’t someone think of trying this sooner?”
Many music-lovers deem Johann Sebastian Bach’s music to be the wellspring of the great catalogue of western music that is performed and enjoyed today. Although such an assertion can be the start of a lively debate, SummerFest Music Director Cho-Liang Lin put himself firmly in