Special Thanks to Wells Fargo for its Generous Support of Opening Night
(Los Angeles, CA - June 18, 2016) One of Los Angeles' most iconic concert venues, the Hollywood Bowl, launched its 95th season with the sold-out 2016 Opening Night Concert, featuring Grammy Award-winning jazz/rock band STEELY DAN, Saturday, June 18, at 8 pm. In addition, the evening kicked off the 10th anniversary of the LA Phil's Composer Fellowship Program (CFP) with a performance of compositions by two CFP alumni. The special concert also featured the LA County High School for the Arts' Vocal Ensemble.
Steely Dan, featuring founding members Walter Becker and Donald Fagen, first appeared at the Bowl in 1996, and more recently in a 2015 performance enjoyed by tens of thousands. The band, which has sold more than 40 million albums and helped define contemporary American music, shared the stage with the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra (HBO) led by Thomas Wilkins, marking their first-ever orchestral collaboration.
The Opening Night at the Hollywood Bowl benefit concert raised a record-breaking $1.7 million for the Los Angeles Philharmonic's many education and community programs, which serve more than 150,000 youth, families and teachers every year. CFP is included in these initiatives along with Symphonies for Schools and Gustavo Dudamel's signature program Youth Orchestra LA (YOLA).
The celebratory evening began with Wilkins leading the HBO in Los Angeles-based composer Peter Boyer's "Silver Fanfare," during which a video montage of highlights from past Hollywood Bowl Opening Nights was shown on the Bowl's big screens. After officially welcoming the audience to the special night, Wilkins introduced the Opening Night Title Sponsor Wells Fargo, Sponsorship Chairs Lisa Stevens, David DiCristofaro and Jonathan Weedman, LA Phil Gala Committee Chairs Larry, Lisa and Robyn Field and Gala Co-Chairs Alex Glickman and Gayle Whittemore, before the orchestra continued with Bernstein's Candide Overture.
Wilkins then spoke of the important role of music education in shaping the lives of young people and the background of the Los Angeles Philharmonic's Composer Fellowship Program, an innovative two-year immersion program for high school-age composers. Launching its 10th year, CFP was founded in 2007 by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Steven Stucky. The program provides young artists with unrivaled access to the world's leading composers and musicians and gives them the tools necessary to pursue a career in music. Following a video showcasing CFP highlights, the HBO, led by Wilkins, performed short works by two alumni Fellows - Anderson Alden's Lift and Katya Richardson's "Fanfare for Orchestra." The compositions of Alden and Richardson - who came onstage to take bows following their respective pieces - were chosen by an all-star panel of professional composers as part of a CFP alumni competition.
The first half of the program concluded with the LA County High School for the Arts' (LACHSA) Vocal Ensemble along with the HBO and Wilkins performing Stephen Sondheim's "Children Will Listen" from Into the Woods.
The second half of the concert picked up with Steely Dan taking the stage, joined by the HBO and Wilkins, for their set, which included arrangements by Vince Mendoza. Songs included the band's memorable hits "Night by Night," "The Caves of Altamira," "Green Earrings," "The Royal Scam," "Aja," "Deacon Blues," "Home at Last," "Josie," and Third World Man." A spectacular fireworks display lit up the summer sky as band and orchestra played "Bodhisattva." For the encore, Steely Dan returned to the stage for "Kid Charlemagne" with the HBO.
A number of film and television personalities, as well as elected and other civic officials, were present to enjoy the benefit concert, including Matt Bomer with partner Simon Halls, Steven Weber, Mark Duplass, California State Assembly Member Adrin Nazarian, and Los Angeles City Councilmember David Ryu, Los Angeles Philharmonic Board Chair Diane B. Paul, Los Angeles Philharmonic CEO & President Deborah Borda and Los Angeles Philharmonic Executive Director Gail Samuel.
Prior to the concert, Opening Night Patrons enjoyed a VIP cocktail reception in the Monique and Jonathan Kagan Patio. Reception attendees enjoyed having their photos taken inside Opening Night Title Sponsor Wells Fargo's famous stage coach replica, as well as in VIP Reception Sponsor American Airlines' photo booth.
Following the reception, Opening Night patrons enjoyed dinner served in their boxes. This year's table décor featured a clean seasonal look - white and natural flax linens, with bursts of bright green floral in lava lamp-inspired vases for the centerpieces.
The Lucques Group designed a custom menu for the night which featured a first course of roasted peach and burrata with dandelion and crushed hazelnuts, followed by the main course of chicken paillard with cornbread stuffing, cavolo nero and glazed brooks cherries, concluding with a dessert of bittersweet chocolate torta with mascarpone and caramel hazelnuts.
Wine for the evening was provided by WINC, Official Wines of the Hollywood Bowl.
The Hollywood Bowl Opening Night Concert was chaired by Gala Chairs Larry, Lisa and Robyn Field. Gala Co-Chairs were Alex Glickman and Gayle Whittemore. Wells Fargo was the Opening Night Title Sponsor and Lisa Stevens, David DiCristofaro and Jonathan Weedman were Sponsorship Chairs. Premiere Sponsors were Amgen Foundation, Kaiser Permanente of Southern California and Live Nation/Ticketmaster. American Airlines was the Muse Sponsor.
About Steely Dan
Led by Donald Fagen and Walter Becker, Steely Dan has sold more than 40 million albums worldwide and helped define the soundtrack of the '70s with hits such as "Reelin' in the Years," "Rikki Don't Lose That Number," "F.M.," "Peg," "Hey Nineteen," "Deacon Blues," and "Babylon Sisters," from their seven platinum albums issued between 1972 and 1980 - including 1977's groundbreaking Aja. Steely Dan reunited in the early '90s, launching a string of sold-out tours (that continue through today). In 2000 they released the multi-Grammy winning (including "Album of the Year") Two Against Nature, and released the acclaimed follow-up Everything Must Go in 2003. Steely Dan was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2001. Visit www.steelydan.com for more information.
About the Hollywood Bowl
One of the largest natural amphitheaters in the world, with a seating capacity of nearly 18,000, the Hollywood Bowl has been the summer home of the Los Angeles Philharmonic since its official opening in 1922, and plays host to the finest artists from all genres of music. It remains one of the best deals anywhere in Los Angeles; to this day, $1 buys a seat at the top of the Bowl for many classical and jazz offerings. The venue offers something for everyone, from its sizzling summer evening concerts to the daytime arts festival for children, "SummerSounds: World Music for Kids at the Hollywood Bowl." In February 2016, the Hollywood Bowl was named Best Major Outdoor Concert Venue for the twelfth year in a row at the 27th Annual Pollstar Concert Industry Awards. For millions of music lovers across Southern California, the Hollywood Bowl is synonymous with summer. http://www.HollywoodBowl.com
Special Thanks to Wells Fargo for its Generous Support of Opening Night