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  • WDCH
  • Dec. 13, 2006
  • Coloratura Soprano Cyndia Sieden Also Featured in

    Program of Carols, Sacred Music and Audience Sing-alongs


    David Higgs, one of America's leading concert organists, showcases the beauty and power of the Walt Disney Concert Hall organ in a program of holiday carols, sacred music and audience sing-alongs for the Holiday Organ Spectacular on Wednesday, December 13, at 8 p.m. The program, part of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Association's annual Deck the Hall series of holiday presentations, also features Cyndia Sieden, a coloratura soprano noted for her performances of repertoire ranging from the Baroque through works of the 21st century.

    The concert's program features Bach's Sinfonia to Cantata 29, Handel's Rejoice Greatly (from Messiah), Brahms' Lo, How A Rose, Mozart's Andante, K.616 and Alleluia, Vierne's Carillon de Westminster, Yon's Gesu Bambino, Dupré's Variations on a Noël (Noël Nouvelet), Adam's O Holy Night, and carols ranging from Joy to the World and Hark the Herald Angels Sing, to a medley of traditional spirituals.

    Deck the Hall, presented by the Los Angeles Philharmonic Association, is a series of festive performances throughout the month of December (including two concerts on New Year's Eve) featuring an array of exceptional artists offering seasonal music. Other Deck the Hall presentations include Christmas with the Canadian Brass on Wednesday, December 6, at 8 p.m.; 'Twas the Week Before Christmas, the annual family concert, on Friday, December 15, at 8 p.m., Saturday, December 16, 2 at p.m., and Sunday, December 17, at 7:30 p.m.; A Chanticleer Christmas on Tuesday, December 19, at 8 p.m.; The Klezmatics: Happy Joyous Hanukkah on Thursday, December 21, at 8 p.m.; The Escovedo Family Orchestra's Latin Holiday Celebration on Friday, December 22 at 8 p.m.; Holiday Sing-Along on Saturday, December 23 at 2 p.m.; The Blind Boys of Alabama on Saturday, December 23 at 8 p.m.; and two New Year's Eve performances on Sunday, December 31, by Lyle Lovett at 7 and 10:30 p.m.

    DAVID HIGGS, chair of the Organ Department at the Eastman School of Music, has inaugurated many important new instruments including those at St. Stephan's Cathedral, Vienna; the Meyerson Symphony Center, Dallas; and the Church of St. Ignatius Loyola in New York City. His performances with ensembles have included the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Chanticleer, the Orpheus Ensemble, and the Empire Brass. In 1987, he made his debut with the San Francisco Symphony and for twelve years played annual Christmas recitals to capacity audiences at San Francisco's Davies Symphony Hall. Higgs appears frequently at major national and international organ festivals. Recent engagements have included the International Organ Festivals of Calgary, Naples, Redlands, San Anselmo, the Gilmore International Keyboard Festival, and the Summer Organ Academies of the Interlochen School for the Arts and Mt. Royal College-Conservatory in Calgary. In England, he has appeared several times at the Oundle International Festival, the St. Albans International Festival, and the Cambridge Summer Festival. A native of New York City, Higgs earned the Bachelor and Master of Music degrees at the Manhattan School of Music, and a Performer's Certificate from the Eastman School of Music. His teachers have included Claire Coci, Peter Hurford, Russell Saunders, and Frederick Swann. A sought-after teacher himself, Higgs is a frequent lecturer and master-teacher for conferences, workshops, and festivals on both sides of the Atlantic. He was appointed to the faculty of the Manhattan School of Music upon graduation from that institution and was later the Director of Church Music Studies at the Church Divinity School of the Pacific in Berkeley. He was appointed to the faculty of the Eastman School of Music in 1992, and since that time his students have won major competitions and hold many of the top positions in the United States. Higgs has recorded for Delos International, Pro Organo, and Gothic records.

    CYNDIA SIEDEN's purity of tone lends itself to the exactness required by both early and contemporary music. She performed the title role of Rodelinda at the Halle Handel Festival and with the Boston Symphony Orchestra at Tanglewood; her recording of Amor in Gluck's Orfeo with John Eliot Gardiner (Archiv, 1994) established her authority in Baroque music. In the contemporary realm, notable roles include Ariel in Thomas Adès' The Tempest at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, and the title role of Berg's Lulu in her Metropolitan Opera debut. Sieden is also a preeminent interpreter of Mozart and Strauss. She has performed the Queen of the Night in the world's greatest opera houses, including the Bayerische Staatsoper in Munich, the Opéra Bastille in Paris, and the English National Opera, and she has appeared in many of Mozart's earlier works, such as La finta giardiniera (Serpetta) at the Welsh National Opera, Mitridate (Sifare) at the Wexford Festival, and Il re pastore (Aminta and Elisa). Her Strauss roles include Zerbinetta in Ariadne auf Naxos at the Vienna Staatsoper, Oper der Stadt Bonn, the Seattle Opera, the New Japan Theater, and the Bayerische Staatsoper in Munich; Sophie in Der Rosenkavalier at the Théâtre du Châtelet; Fiakermilli in Arabella at the Bayerische Staatsoper; and Aminta in Die schweigsame Frau at the Teatro Massimo di Palermo. Sieden appears on the EMI recording of Die Frau ohne Schatten conducted by Wolfgang Sawallisch.

    The Los Angeles Philharmonic Association, under Music Director Esa-Pekka Salonen, presents the finest in orchestral and chamber music, recitals, new music, jazz, world music and holiday concerts at two of the most remarkable places anywhere to experience music - Walt Disney Concert Hall and the Hollywood Bowl. In addition to a 30-week winter subscription season at Walt Disney Concert Hall, the LA Phil presents a 12-week summer festival at the legendary Hollywood Bowl, summer home of the Los Angeles Philharmonic and home of the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra. In fulfilling its commitment to the community, the Association's involvement with Los Angeles extends to educational programs, community concerts and children's programming, ever seeking to provide inspiration and delight to the broadest possible audience.



    WALT DISNEY CONCERT HALL, 111 S. Grand Avenue, Los Angeles

    Deck the Hall

    Holiday Organ Spectacular

    DAVID HIGGS, organ

    CYNDIA SIEDEN, soprano

    Tickets ($15 - $135) are on sale now online at, at the Walt Disney Concert Hall Box Office, or via credit card phone order at 323.850.2000. When available, choral bench seats ($15) will be released for sale to selected Philharmonic, Colburn Celebrity Recital, and Baroque Variations performances beginning at noon on the Tuesday of the second week prior to the concert. A limited number of $10 rush tickets for seniors and full time students may be available at the Walt Disney Concert Hall Box Office two hours prior to the performance. Valid identification is required; one ticket per person; cash only. Groups of 12 or more may be eligible for special discounts for selected concerts and seating areas. For all information, please call 323.850.2000.

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  • Contact:

    Adam Crane, 213.972.3422; Laura Stegman, 310.470.6321; Photos: 213.972.3034