Burton Chace Park will again be the site of concerts near the water in the seventh season of the Marina del Rey Summer Concerts series, featuring alternating pop and classical lineups.
The 2007 season of concerts, organized by the Los Angeles County Department of Beaches and Harbors, kicks off with a classical performance by the Marina del Rey Summer Symphony, under the direction of Frank Fetta, joined by the 86-voice Southern California Master Chorale and its choral director Sheridan J. Ball, at 7 p.m. Thursday, July 12th, in Burton Chace Park, 13650 Mindanao Way, Marina del Rey. Admission is free.
The opening concert will feature works for chorus and orchestra, including Carmina Burana, by Carl Orff; These Things Shall Be, by John Ireland; and Serenade to Music, by Ralph Vaughan Williams. Soloists for this concert will be Lori Stinson, soprano; Ralph Cato, baritone; and Philip Parke, tenor.
The eight concerts alternate between classical music on Thursdays and pop music on Saturdays weekly through September 1st.
Fetta has been conductor of the Marina del Rey Summer Symphony since the inception of the concert series. Fetta is permanent conductor of the Culver City Symphony Orchestra, the Torrance Symphony, and the Redlands Bowl Music Festival, and he serves as principal conductor of the Nevada Opera Theatre.
This will be the premiere concert for the Southern California Master Chorale, a new professional ensemble of 75 to 130 singers. The group was originally founded as the Cypress Community Chorus in 1975 and rechristened the Cypress Masterworks chorale in 1981. Its conductor, Dr. Sheridan Ball, is known internationally as a music scholar and choral conductor. Formerly associate director of the famed William Hall Chorale, he is director of choral ensembles at Cypress College and serves as associate conductor with Mid-Amer- ica Productions at Carnegie Hall, New York.
The host for this season’s concerts is Rich Capparela, a classical radio personality with KUSC FM.
Information, (310) 305-9545.
AMANDA McBROOM — Cabaret singer and award-winning songwriter Amanda McBroom will headline the season’s first pop concert Saturday, July 21st.
McBroom first captured the attention of the music public when Bette Midler’s version of McBroom’s song The Rose was a number one hit in 1979. But it was Amanda’s performance of that song on the Golden Globes, Grammys and The Tonight Show that launched her career as a singer.
Her songs have been recorded by Bette Midler, Leanne Rimes, Barry Manilow, Judy Collins, Barbara Cook, Anne Murray, Harry Belafonte, Betty Buckley, Stephanie Mills, The Manhattan Transfer, Donny Osmond, The Chipmunks, and for the cartoon Land Before Time.
She has performed in concert halls around the world, including Carnegie Hall in New York; the Ford Amphitheatre in Los Angeles; Wolftrap and Kennedy Center (where she sang with the National Symphony Orchestra conducted by Marvin Hamlisch) in Washington D.C.; Angel Recital Hall in Sydney; Meyer Hall in Melbourne, where she headlined the Festival of the Arts; and Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall in Taiwan and Pizza on the Park in London.
LINDSAY DEUTSCH — The Marina del Rey Summer Symphony will be joined by 21-year-old violinist Lindsay Deutsch for the July 26th concert.
Deutsch made her orchestral debut at the age of 11 with the Clear Lake Symphony in Texas and now performs throughout the United States and Canada. Her recent appearances include orchestral engagements with the National Academy Orchestra and Oakville Symphony in Ontario, Canada; the Knoxville Symphony; the Fort Worth Symphony; the San Diego Symphony; and the Young Musicians Debut Orchestra.
LORNA LUFT — The Marina del Rey Summer Symphony crosses over to the pop genre for the August 4th concert as the symphony backs up singer Lorna Luft.
Luft, who has been in show business for 35-plus years, was first discovered through her appearances on her mother’s CBS television series, The Judy Garland Show.
Luft was soon asked to join the family act on a summer concert tour, the highlight being Garland’s third and final appearance at New York’s Palace Theater on Broadway. In this month-long engagement, Judy Garland shared the bill with her chil- dren, Lorna and Joe.
At age 19, Luft returned to the Broadway stage to star in the Neil Simon musical Promises, Promises. Her performance earned her the American Guild of Variety Artists “Rising Star of the Year” award.
In addition to her Broadway roles, Luft crossed over to film, starring as Pink Lady Paulette
Rebchuck in Grease 2.
She became a New York Times best-selling author upon the release of her memoir, Me and My Shadows: Living with the Lega- cy of Judy Garland.
Recently, Luft began working on a multimedia production of Songs My Mother Taught Me — A Celebration of the Music of Judy Garland.
EVENING WITH LOS ANGELES OPERA — Los Angeles opera members Shana Blake Hill, soprano; Maria Fortuna, soprano; Mathew Edwardsen, tenor; and Nmon Ford, baritone join the Marina del Rey Summer Symphony for a classical concert on August 9th.
Shana Blake Hill is an alumnus of the Los Angeles Opera’s
Resident Artist program. Hill has appeared with the company as a principal artist, most recently as Papagena in The Magic Flute.
Maria Fortuna has a repertoire
ranging from lyric soprano to dramatic coloratura roles. In opera, she has sung leading roles
with companies located in San Francisco, Wales, Seattle, Dallas, New York City, Prague, Washington and Long Beach.
Mathew Edwardsen began this year by returning to the role of Alfredo in Verdi’s La Traviata,
which he first performed last summer at the Redlands Bowl. He followed that by appearing as Romeo in Gounod’s Romeo and Juliet and Rinuccio in Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi. Nmon Ford is a two-time Grammy Award winner (including Best Classical Recording) for his participation in Naxos’s recording of William Bolcom’s Songs of Innocence and of Experience. Ford most recently performed both “Scarpia” in Tosca and the title role in a new production of Billy Budd with Hamburg Opera.
OSCAR CASTRO-NEVES —
Brazilian Bossa Nova founding figure Oscar Castro-Neves is renowned as a composer and arranger for his sophisticated harmonic concepts and the texture and color of his orchestrations. He is equally known for his distinctive guitar style and is also a record producer who has worked with dozens of major artists in the jazz, popular, Brazilian and classical idioms.
Castro-Neves will headline the August 18th pop concert.
XIN XIN — Special guest pianist Xin Xin will join the Marina del Rey Summer Symphony for the final classical concert of the season on August 23rd.
Xin Xin, born in Beijing, began piano lessons at the age of four. At the age of eight he was chosen to study at the prestigious Central Conservatory of Music for gifted young musicians. During his adolescence, he emigrated to North America, where he started getting attention from the media through his successes in numerous competitions.
He has performed as soloist with the Edmonton Youth Orchestra, Interlochen Arts Academy Orchestra, USC Thornton
Symphony Orchestra, USC University Orchestra, USC Community Orchestra, Hour of Power Orchestra, Peninsula Symphony Orchestra, Culver City Symphony Orchestra, Redlands Symphony Orchestra, Torrance Symphony, Wuhan Symphony Orchestra, American Youth Symphony, and the Pacific Symphony Orchestra.
LAINE AND DANKWORTH — Dame Cleo Laine, a Grammy Award-winning and platinum-selling artist, will front the John Dankworth Group as the pop concert season finale.
The British-born Laine, who also has starred in Broadway productions, got her start in show business when she auditioned successfully for a band led by musician John Dankworth, under whose banner she performed until 1958, when the two were married.
Her recording of You’ll Answer to Me reached the British Top Ten at the same time that Cleo was prima donna in the 1961 Edinburgh Festival production of the Kurt Weill opera/ballet The Seven Deadly Sins.
Her career in the United
States was launched with a concert at New York’s Lincoln Center, followed in 1973 by the first of many Carnegie Hall appearances. She won her first Grammy Award in recognition of the live recording of her 1983 Carnegie Hall concert.
Other important recordings during that time were duet albums with Ray Charles and Mel TormÈ.
Dankworth’s career spans over fifty years as a performer, composer and conductor. Dankworth combines confidence and virtuosity with eclecticism and unpredictability. He took up playing saxophone after being impressed with the work of Charlie Parker. He was voted Musician of the Year in Britain
in 1949, the beginning of a succession of such honors, which included top composer, arranger and leader of both small and big bands in Britain. His two early hit records are Experiments with Mice (1956) and African Waltz (1960).