World War I: A Centenary Perspective Concert – Tickets Now Available!

Tickets are Now Available!
Purchase Tickets Here

The Orange County Youth Symphony Orchestra (OCYSO)
in collaboration with
The Young Musicians Foundation Debut Orchestra (YMF)
Present:

World War I: A Centenary Perspective
January 10, 2016
7:30 PM
Walt Disney Concert Hall

Tickets available at: http://ocyso.brownpapertickets.com/

Concert Highlights:

U.S. Premiere of
“Passchendaele”
by British Composer Mark-Anthony Turnage
Commissioned to commemorate the Centenary of the outbreak of WWI

“The Inextinguishable”
Danish composer Carl Nielsen’s Fourth Symphony
composed during World War I

“The Unanswered Question”
by American Composer Charles Ives
exploring questions about war that go unanswered

 

October 12, 2015 – Tickets are now available to purchase online for the World War I: A Centenary Perspective Concert presented by the Orange County Youth Symphony, music director and conductor Daniel Alfred Wachs,  in collaboration with Young Musicians Foundation, music director and conductor Yuga Cohler.

The concert is part of a weeklong Centenary Perspective event which will explore the musical and artistic response to wartime through two OCYSO and YMF collaborative concert performances, including a major orchestral performance at Walt Disney Concert Hall (WDCH) as part of the LA PHIL’s Sounds About Town series.

British composer Mark-Anthony Turnage’s work Passchendaele will be given its U.S. premiere at the Walt Disney Concert Hall concert. This work was commissioned to commemorate the centenary of the outbreak of the war and comes on the heels of two previous works the composer has written about WWI.  “The main thing the centenary should do is make you think for yourself,” the composer says. “The young musicians that will play the piece in Birmingham and L.A. are very distant from the First World War, but they should know what happened and make their own minds up for their generation.”

The other works on the program include Danish composer Carl Nielsen’s Fourth Symphony, “The Inextinguishable” which was composed during World War I, and Charles Ives’s well-known “The Unanswered Question” drawing us into the exploration and questions about war that go unanswered, encouraging one to explore their own response to war. In the words of composer Nielsen, “Music is life, and, like life, inextinguishable.”

Prior to the WDCH performance, there will be a symposium featuring a distinguished panel of guests presented by LA’s Central Library downtown in the Mark Taper Auditorium from 2:00-4:00PM. The discussion will feature distinguished WWI historian and Professor at Chapman University Dr. Jennifer Keene, acclaimed poet, Professor of Poetry and Public Culture at USC and former chairman of the NEA Dana Gioia, renowned British composer featured on the WDCH program Mark-Anthony Turnage and (TBD), literary and musical perspectives, the discussion will take us on a journey through the deep artistic responses to war.

Tickets can be ordered online at: http://ocyso.brownpapertickets.com/

OCYSO PRESENTS WORLD WAR I: A CENTENARY PERSPECTIVE

WWI_the_Key

THE ORANGE COUNTY YOUTH SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA (OCYSO) PRESENTS WORLD WAR I: A CENTENARY PERSPECTIVE IN COLLABORATION WITH THE YOUNG MUSICIANS FOUNDATION DEBUT ORCHESTRA (YMF) IN JANUARY 2016

LA PHIL presents a WWI commemorative orchestral concert with OCYSO and YMF on Sunday, January 10, 2016 at 7:30PM as part of the prestigious SOUNDS ABOUT TOWN series including the U.S. Premiere of Mark-Anthony Turnage’s PASSCHENDAELE

LACMA hosts a chamber music concert as part of “Sundays Live” with OCYSO and YMF musicians featuring works by Schoenberg and Ravel and a World Premiere orchestration of Ives songs by composer Vera Ivanova Sunday, January 17 at 6PM

Los Angeles’s Central Library hosts a panel discussion in the Mark Taper Auditorium from 2-4 on Sunday, January 10 featuring a distinguished panel including WWI historian Dr. Jennifer Keene, poet and former NEA Chairman Dana Gioia with President and Artistic Director of the Philharmonic Society of Orange County John Mangum

Continue Reading →

The Young Musicians Foundation Debut Orchestra Announces Its 2015-2016 Season

Highlights include:
  • Inaugural installation of The Great Music Series, featuring music by Kanye West as conceived by newly appointed Music Director Yuga Cohler and composer Stephen Feigenbaum.
  • Collaboration with the Orange County Youth Symphony Orchestra in Walt Disney Hall, featuring a U.S. premiere by Mark-Anthony Turnage.
  • Memorial concert for YMF Founder Sylvia Kunin, featuring YMF alumniLawrence Foster, Glenn Dicterow, Nathaniel Rosen, and Gerald Robbins.
  • Performances at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and the Japanese-American Cultural and Community Center of works by Esa-Pekka Salonenand Andrew Norman.

Los Angeles, CA – Executive Director Julia Gaskill and newly appointed Music Director Yuga Cohler today announced the 2015/16 season of the Young Musicians Foundation (YMF) Debut Orchestra, one of the foremost pre-professional trainingorchestras in the United States.

The season features the inaugural installation of The Great Music Series, a concert series dedicated to the exploration of themes common to both classical masterpieces and the popular music of today. The season-ending concert Yeethoven will compare Kanye West’s critically acclaimed album Yeezus, arranged for orchestra by award-winning composer Stephen Feigenbaum, to works by Beethoven. “The Great Music Series is an important step for orchestras in the 21st century,” said Cohler. “It is intended to initiate a dialogue between classical music and popular culture, and allows the possibility for orchestras to engage with truly new audiences.” Cohler will co-curate the concert with Feigenbaum.

Continue Reading →

Several projects including a special collaboration with Young Musicians Foundation Debut Orchestra (YMF) for the 2015-2016 season

OCYSO IS PLEASED TO ANNOUNCE COLLABORATION FOR 2015-2016 WITH YOUNG MUSICIANS FOUNDATION DEBUT ORCHESTRA CULMINATING WITH  A LOS ANGELES PHILHARMONIC ASSOCIATION SOUNDS ABOUT TOWN PRESENTATION ON JANUARY 10, 2016 

PBS SoCal (KOCE) TO AIR OCYSO’s 2014 DOCUMENTARY
Beethoven’s Ninth: Journey to Joy

OCYSO ENGAGED TO PRESENT NEW FAMILY HOLIDAY PROGRAM AT SEGERSTROM HALL AS PART OF 2015-2016 PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY OF ORANGE COUNTY SEASON

Click here to download PDF of OCYSO press release.

The Question of Interpretation: Ideal Vs. Reality

On the question of forming an interpretation:  Let’s agree that one achieves this from an in-depth study of the score, but also from a broader understanding of a composer’s total opus, in this case Beethoven’s eight other symphonies as well as his sonatas. (I am grateful that I was forced to learn his final sonata Opus 111 when I was 16, otherwise I would not have the experience to draw upon as I now approach the gargantuan Adagio…!) Additionally, an examination of a composer’s life through letters and biographies is crucial. We forget that these giants among men were in fact mortal, each with their own set of complexities.

Then there are performance practices and ‘traditions,’ which cannot be ignored and should be examined closely for merit (or lack thereof) in the form of recordings and live performances. Too much ‘interpretation,’ certainly without intellectual and emotional context, can be misconstrued as interpolation. The art is the balance.

What has struck me more than ever during this period of  my own study of what  ultimately will be my interpretation is the question of ability. OCYSO is comprised of talented adolescents who do not have both the benefit (and the burden) of a long history with this work. How is a young player to navigate 70 plus minutes of music? The infamous 4th horn part has given enough ‘professional’ horn players centuries of panic. How is a young player to handle its pressures? How can a string section, as sensitive as they are but young nonetheless, effortlessly spin out the seemingly endless lines of the slow movement while maintaining both beauty and tension? Will I be forced to move faster (or slower) through certain passages due to inherent challenges, read ability?  If so, is it truly then my ‘interpretation’ or one borne of necessity, reality? The great George Hurst used to say that out of challenge comes great art. That being said, just how different is my not achieving my ‘ideal’ any different from any other conductor with a professional orchestra at his/her disposal?

To take a stab at these questions; I suppose that one can count on a certain level of proficiency and ability with more mature orchestras, which then makes one’s choices more possible. Yet, as I witnessed with Alan Gilbert and the New York Philharmonic back in October, his own ideal of the piece was very different from the ‘institutionalized’ memory of what the New York Philharmonic (who incidentally gave the United States premiere of the work) have in their collective conscience. (For the record, I found Maestro Gilbert’s interpretation interesting.) This, at least, is something that I don’t have to ‘fight’ for with OCYSO; they are a clean slate.

For now, the process for me is about exploration and frankly trial and error. OCYSO informs my idea of the piece just as my study, intuition and experience guides them. In that respect, I will be just as curious come May 15 as you all to see what comes of it all.

Happy 243, Ludwig (and fellow Sag)!

The two existing Beethoven 9 copyist scores, side-by-side for the first time in almost 200 years.

The two existing Beethoven 9 copyist scores, side-by-side for the first time in almost 200 years.