A Selective Guide to the Arts in Los Angeles

Your best bet is Tuesday evening with this month’s edition of the fabulous Piano Spheres series featuring pianists Liam Viney and Anna Grinberg.  A particularly interesting work on the program is Pierre Boulez’s Structures Livre I in three “chapters.”  Boulez’s music is a heavyweight event in itself with his unique integral serialism and iconoclastic refusal of convention.  I think it will be interesting to hear the contrast with John Adams’ gentle Hallelujah Junction.

Saturday evening Jacaranda will be in Santa Monica with a finely focused program of Czech and Hungarian themes from Martinu and Bartók, back to Janácek, and on to Dvorák.  You may want to fasten your seatbelt as you turn off your cellphone.  Jacaranda is always outstanding in its programming and the quality of its performances with some of the most distinguished musical artists in Los Angeles.

Piano Spheres with Liam Viney and Anna Grinberg

Piano Spheres presents the LA Piano Duo with Liam Viney and Anna Grinberg who return to LA from stages in Australia, Israel, and the United States.  Since 1994, Piano Spheres has produced an annual series of new and contemporary music for the piano, and the program this month at Zipper Hall certainly exemplifies that goal.


•  György Kurtág: Fog Canon, from Játékok IV; Flowers we are … [embracing sounds]; Hand in Hand; Quarrelling; Hommage a Paganini;

•  Witold Lutoslawski: Variations on a Theme by Paganini

•  Henri Dutilleux: Figures de resonances;

•  Shaun Naidoo: Diamond Morning 2007

•  Pierre Boulez: Structures Livre I

•  Robert Schumann (arr. Debussy): Two Etudes in the form of a canon

•  Peter Maxwell Davies: 1st Lesson

•  John Adams: Hallelujah Junction

Tuesday, Feb. 8, 8 p.m.

Zipper Concert Hall at the Colburn School, 200 South Grand Avenue, LA

Tickets: $25 / $12 student

Jacaranda ‘Music at the Edge’

Patrick Scott, artistic director and series producer, and Music Director Mark Alan Hilt have assembled an excellent program for the Jacaranda series this month focused on a 50-year span of Czech and Hungarian themes.

The Denali Quartet, featuring Tereza Stanislav and Joel Pargman (violins), Alma Lisa Fernandez (viola), and Timothy Loo (cello), will be performing.  Other artists include Francois Chouchan (piano), Leslie Reed (oboe), Donald Foster (clarinet), Rose Corrigan (bassoon), Alyssa Park (violin), and Aron Kallay (piano).

The program is titled “Meeting Place”:

•  Bohuslav Martinu: Four Wind Madrigals for oboe, clarinet and bassoon, H. 266 (1938).

•  Bela Bartók: Contrasts (1938) is a three-movement amalgam of abstracted Hungarian folk music.

•  Leos Janácek: String Quartet No.1, “Kreutzer Sonata” (1923) was inspired by the Leo Tolstoy novella of jealous rage.

•  Antonín Dvorák: Piano Quintet in A Major, Op.81 (1888), the second of only two piano quintets, is considered a masterpiece of the genre.

Saturday, Feb. 12, 8 p.m.

First Presbyterian Church of Santa Monica, 1220 Second Street, Santa Monica

Tickets: $40 / $20 students (at the door); $35 / $15 students (advance sale)

These events were selected from among those listed in Jim Eninger’s Clickable Chamber Music Newsletter, an extensive calendar of upcoming music events, large and small, happening all around Los Angeles.