Proceeds from the Evening will Support
the LA Phil and its Learning Programs Including
YOLA (Youth Orchestra Los Angeles)
Maestro Gustavo Dudamel, John Williams and the Musicians of the Los Angeles Philharmonic
Generously Donated their Services for this Concert
The LA Phil Concert and Gala: John Williams Celebration
Was Made Possible with the Proud Support of Rolex
Photos by: Mathew Imaging/LA Phil
LOS ANGELES (September 27, 2022) – The Los Angeles Philharmonic and Music & Artistic Director Gustavo Dudamel returned to the Walt Disney Concert Hall stage for the LA Phil Concert and Gala: John Williams Celebration, Tuesday, September 27, at Walt Disney Concert Hall. This historic event featured Gustavo Dudamel sharing the podium with close friend and inspiration John Williams, for a night honoring the legendary composer’s 90th birthday. They were joined by acclaimed violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter who was conducted by Williams in his Second Violin Concerto, a piece he wrote specially for her and which they premiered together last year.
Raising more than $3.5 million for the LA Phil’s music learning programs, which serve more than 150,000 youths, families and teachers every year, the special evening which kicked off the LA Phil’s new season began with the arrival of notable celebrities and VIPs: Frank Gehry, Herbie Hancock, Christoph Waltz, Alejandro Furth, Kris Bowers, Jean-Yves Thibaudet and Jeffrey Katzenberg among others. Local officials in attendance included California Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, California State Senator Ben Allen, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, City of Inglewood Mayor James T. Butts and Los Angeles County Chief Executive Officer Fesia Davenport. They were joined by LA Phil Board Chair and Gala Co-Chair Thomas L. Beckmen; Gustavo Dudamel with María Valverde; Anne-Sophie Mutter; LA Phil Gala Co-Chairs Judith Beckmen, Breck Eisner, Winnie Kho, Diane B. Paul, and Robert Ronus; and LA Phil CEO Chad Smith, along with more than 650 Gala patrons.
The pre-concert cocktail reception was held in front of Walt Disney Concert Hall on the closed-off block of Grand Avenue, where guests enjoyed hors d’oeuvres and cocktails in a specially designed space. Gala guests and concert attendees then moved into Walt Disney Concert Hall for the concert performed by the LA Phil with Gustavo Dudamel and guest conductor John Williams. The concert program, dedicated to Williams’ music, opened with Gustavo Dudamel conducting Just Down West Street, a work Williams composed in 2015 to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Tanglewood Music Center in Western Massachusetts. Williams then joined the LA Phil and violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter to conduct a performance of his Violin Concerto No. 2, written specially for Mutter in 2021. Dudamel then closed the concert with performances of music from Indiana Jones, Star Wars: A New Hope and E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial. Encores included the main theme from Schindler’s List with the return of soloist Anne-Sophie Mutter, as well as Star Wars’ title music.
Post-concert festivities were held on Grand Avenue. The dinner party décor featured purple and rich gold tones, clear glass tables and floral decorations with meals created by Chef José Andrés from The Conrad Los Angeles, and wines provided by Winc. Remarks given by LA Phil Board Chair Thomas L. Beckmen, LA Phil CEO Chad Smith and LA Phil Music & Artistic Director Gustavo Dudamel were followed by a surprise performance in tribute to Williams, given by LA Phil musicians Martin Chalifour (Principal Concertmaster), Joanne Pearce Martin (keyboards), Robert deMaine (Principal Cello) and Boris Allakhverdyan (Principal Clarinet), of his piece Air and Simple Gifts which Williams composed for the first inauguration of President Barack Obama. The evening continued with dancing to the sounds of Liquid Blue across the street at the Aqua Viva restaurant at The Conrad Hotel.
The Los Angeles Philharmonic Gala Committee included Gala Co-Chairs Judith and Thomas L. Beckmen, Breck Eisner, Winnie Kho, Diane B. Paul, Robert Ronus, and Steven Spielberg and Kate Capshaw.
The Los Angeles Philharmonic’s LA Phil Gala: John Williams Celebration was created by Sequoia Productions and the LA Phil’s Special Events Team.
All Gala proceeds support the Los Angeles Philharmonic and its learning and community programs, including YOLA, the signature program of Gustavo Dudamel. The Gala concert was made possible with the proud support of Rolex.
Going forward, the LA Phil’s 2022/23 season will feature a number of trailblazing projects. Dudamel will conduct 10 programs, including concerts that are part of the Pan-American Music Initiative, a 10-day Rachmaninoff marathon featuring Yuja Wang playing all four piano concertos and the Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, holiday performances of The Nutcracker, a concert-hall presentation of the Tristan Project, and a Mozart program with pianist Mitsuko Uchida.
Soprano Julia Bullock will curate the Rock My Soul festival, a series of five programs tracing generations of musical expression and collaborations between Black women artists, with three Humanities events curated by Mercedes Cooper for Ava DuVernay’s ARRAY. The multi-year Pan-American Music Initiative will continue, including three LA Phil-commissioned works by Gabriela Ortiz (Kauyumari, Yanga and Altar de cuerda—a violin concerto to be performed by María Dueñas) and Arturo Márquez’ violin concerto Fandango with Anne Akiko Meyers as soloist.
Additional highlights of the 22/23 season include Conductor Emeritus Zubin Mehta’s return to Walt Disney Concert Hall to lead the orchestra in Mahler’s Symphony No. 3, George Crumb’s Ancient Voices of Children and Berlioz’ Symphonie fantastique. Michael Tilson Thomas will celebrate his annual return to Walt Disney Concert Hall with music by Debussy (featuring pianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet), Messiaen and Villa-Lobos, as well as a performance of Mahler’s Symphony No. 9. Acclaimed Principal Guest Conductor Susanna Mälkki will be joined by flutist Claire Chase and bassist esperanza spalding in the U.S. premiere of Felipe Lara’s LA Phil-commissioned Double Concerto. John Adams, the LA Phil’s Creative Chair, celebrating his 75th year, will lead the orchestra in the LA premiere of his opera Girls of the Golden West (to be recorded at Walt Disney Concert Hall with a cast headed by Julia Bullock) and will also conduct the LA Phil New Music Group in a Green Umbrella concert featuring the world premiere of a new work by Anthony Cheung.
EDITORS PLEASE NOTE:
Tuesday, September 27, at 7 PM
Walt Disney Concert Hall,
111 S. Grand Avenue, Los Angeles
John Williams Celebration
LOS ANGELES PHILHARMONIC
GUSTAVO DUDAMEL, conductor
JOHN WILLIAMS, conductor
ANNE-SOPHIE MUTTER, violin
John WILLIAMS Just Down West Street
John WILLIAMS Violin Concerto No. 2 (conducted by John Williams)
John WILLIAMS “Scherzo for Motorcycle and Orchestra” from Indiana Jones
John WILLIAMS “Princess Leia’s Theme” from Star Wars: A New Hope
John WILLIAMS “Adventures on Earth” from E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial
John WILLIAMS Theme from Schindler’s List with Anne-Sophie Mutter, violin
John WILLIAMS Star Wars Main Theme
The 2022 Opening Night Gala and Concert was made possible with the proud support of Rolex.
Proceeds support the LA Phil and its learning programs, including YOLA (Youth Orchestra Los Angeles). Maestro Gustavo Dudamel, John Williams and the Musicians of the Los Angeles Philharmonic generously donated their services for this concert.
Music & Artistic Director Gustavo Dudamel holds the Walt and Lilly Disney Chair. Chief Executive Officer Chad Smith holds the David C. Bohnett Chief Executive Officer Chair. The John and Samantha Williams Creative Chair held by John Adams was named through a gift from John and Samantha Williams. Principal Guest Conductor Susanna Mälkki holds the Ann Ronus Chair. The LA Phil’s Humanities programs are generously supported by Linda and David Shaheen.
ABOUT THE LA PHIL
Under the leadership of Music & Artistic Director Gustavo Dudamel, the LA Phil offers live performances, media initiatives and learning programs that inspire and strengthen communities in Los Angeles and beyond. The Los Angeles Philharmonic orchestra is the foundation of the LA Phil’s offerings, which also include a multi-genre, multidisciplinary presenting program and such youth development programs as YOLA (Youth Orchestra Los Angeles). Performances are offered on three historic stages—Walt Disney Concert Hall, the Hollywood Bowl and The Ford—as well as through a variety of media platforms. In all its endeavors, the LA Phil seeks to enrich the lives of individuals and communities through musical, artistic and learning experiences that resonate in our world today.
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