Date(s) - 03/26/2021 - 05/31/2021
Gil Shaham, “one of today’s preeminent violinists” (The New York Times), makes his Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra (LACO) debut, performing Boulogne’s virtuosic Violin Concerto No. 9 in G major, on the Orchestra’s groundbreaking CLOSE QUARTERS interdisciplinary digital series that melds musical and visual arts. The program also includes Fratres, composed in 1977 by Arvo Pärt with his distinctive triad-based technique. The orchestra itself is the visual focus of this compelling episode, shot by CLOSE QUARTERS cinematographer Michael Elias Thomas utilizing cutting edge filming techniques. Video effects are by CLOSE QUARTERS production designers Yuki Izumihara and Yee Eun Nam, with direction by LACO Creative Director of Digital Content James Darrah. Thanks to the generosity of individual donors, the new episode is available to the public at no cost and can be streamed on demand following its premiere on Friday, March 26, 2021, at 6:30 pm (PT), at https://www.laco.org/close-quarters/, LACO’s YouTube and Facebook live channels. A digital pre-concert conversation begins at 5:30 pm (PT).
Shaham’s LACO appearance comes on the heels of the release earlier this month of his first solo recording in several years, which includes his first-ever recording of Beethoven’s Violin Concerto as well as the Brahms concerto. He has previously recorded more than two dozen concerto and solo CDs, earning multiple GRAMMY Awards, a Grand Prix du Disque, Diapason d’Or and Gramophone Editor’s Choice, among other accolades. Shaham, who plays a 1719 Stradivarius, is noted for his flawless technique combined with his inimitable warmth and generosity of spirit that has solidified his renown as an American master. The Illinois-born, Israel-raised violinist is sought after for concert and recital appearances on the world’s great concert stages. Hailed for drawing “a veritable feast of tone coloring from his violin” (The Baltimore Sun), he was awarded an Avery Fischer Career Grant in 1990, received the coveted Avery Fisher Prize in 2008, and was named Musical America’s “Instrumentalist of the Year” in 2012.
CLOSE QUARTERS’ “digitally native” programs, created specifically for streaming and hailed as “musically and artistically compelling” (Los Angeles Times), have drawn nearly one million views to date since debuting in November 2020. Between 30 and 40 minutes in length, they are safely filmed at The Colburn School’s Olive Rehearsal Hall. Additionally, Darrah has established a creative hub for developing artistic media content with L.A.-based artists and filmmakers at a first-of-its-kind LACO digital studio at Wilhardt & Naud: a film studio and multidisciplinary arts campus located in Chinatown in downtown Los Angeles. The artists, inspired by the Orchestra’s musical programming, will create new visual works in a variety of mediums that will factor into the broadcasts and endure long after the season concludes. CLOSE QUARTERS builds upon the highly successful LACO SummerFest series, the Orchestra’s first foray into streaming that concluded in September and featured five digital chamber music concerts that have attracted nearly 250,000 views to date.
Subsequent CLOSE QUARTERS episodes premiere on Fridays, April 9 and 23, May 7 and 21, and June 4, 2021, at 6:30 pm (PT).