After a 19-month closure due to the covid-19 pandemic, the Walt Disney Concert Hall has opened its doors once again for the 2021/22 season. The announcement comes from LA Phil Music & Artistic Director Gustavo Dudamel and Chad Smith, Chief Executive Officer and David C. Bohnett Chief Executive Officer Chair, all of whom expressed their gratitude to patrons for continuing to engage with the LA Phil throughout their hiatus from live music and performances.
“Over this past year, the pandemic has isolated us from one another, and so as we celebrate our return to Walt Disney Concert Hall, we want to remember all that unites us, and all that is best in us,” said Dudamel. “This season, we will blend different musical traditions, bridge geographical borders and build new connections among cultures, communities, audiences and artists. Whether experiencing the overpowering message of freedom in Beethoven’s Fidelio; moving to the rhythms of Ginastera, Villa-Lobos and Revueltas in the Pan-American Music Initiative; or feeling the passionate urgency of change in Power to the People!, this season is about coming together and once again sharing the beauty of life with each other.”
The 2021/22 season kicked off this past Saturday with the LA Phil’s annual celebratory fundraising-event, a “homecoming”-themed program that included the world premiere of an LA Phil commissioned work for orchestra by Gabriela Ortiz (also part of the Pan-American Music Initiative). And, now until Oct. 17, patrons can get 30 percent savings on tickets in select sections for select concerts.
Out of the dozens of performances to catch this season, Grimy Goods recommends the following shows below. We know the majority of our readers lean towards indie music and exploring music discovery; the concerts selected below embody all that and more. There’s a little something for everyone here and we can’d deny the grandeur of experiencing a concert at the iconic Walt Disney Concert Hall. The sound / acoustics are perfection.
Halloween Organ, Film & Music: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
This classic 1920s silent film by John S. Robertson and starring John Barrymore is a Halloween staple. Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde will be shown with a live organ soundtrack performed by organist Clark Wilson.
RY X and the LA Phil
Australian multi-instrumentalist and producer RY X is set to take the stage with the LA Phil backing him in what is sure to be a beautiful and complex arrangement. Known for his striking vocals and poignant lyrics, RY X moves audiences by making his music a cathartic experience.
Flamenco! Fiesta de la Bulería Jerez
The legendary “Fiesta de la Bulería,” one of the most important flamenco festivals in all of Spain, will be brought to the stage of the Walt Disney Concert Hall thanks to dancer Maria Bermudez. Bermudez, along with 15 other talented artists (singers, musicians, dancers) direct from the birthplace of flamenco, Jerez de la Frontera, Andalusia, Spain, will bring this one of a kind experience to flamenco fans in Southern California.
Robert Glasper Reimagines Ellington
An accomplished pianist respected by the jazz establishment, musician Robert Glasper will bring the music of Duke Ellington, reimagined and polished off to shine just as brightly as ever. Backed by an orchestra and some very special guests, he will take patrons along on a journey into the past, present and future of jazz music.
Sparks — Brothers Ron and Russel Mael — celebrate 50 years
Los Angeles raised brothers Ron and Russel Mael celebrate 50 years of making music together with two back to back performances. Known for their witty lyrics, inventive sound and genre bending music, the brothers have also written the highly anticipated movie musical, Annette, and they are the subjects of a film documentary directed by Edgar Wright. This very special performance at the Walt Disney Concert Hall will celebrate these achievements and more.
Chilean singer and songwriter and 3-time Latin Grammy winner Mon Laferte blends the musical traditions of her culture plus that of Mexico, where she currently resides, with bold pop music and powerful lyrics addressing social issues, especially among women, people of color and the impoverished in Latin America.
The LA Phil’s Creative Chair for Jazz, Herbie Hancock is a musical force not to be reckoned with, but surely to be enjoyed. He comes to the Walt Disney Concert Hall, bringing with him decades of innovation, craft and expertise.
A sharp songwriter with attention to detail, musician Andy Shauf has been heralded by fans and critics alike for his musical depth and has garnered comparisons to the likes of Joni Mitchell and Randy Newman. His warm, narrative music fills smaller spaces with ease and makes larger concert halls seem more connected and intimate.
Jeff Goldblum and The Mildred Snitzer Orchestra
Behind all the film accolades and big motion pictures, actor Jeff Goldblum also fosters a love and talent for music. He and his jazz band, The Mildred Snitzer Orchestra, have been touring around the United States and play regularly at Los Feliz’ Rockwell Table & Stage. Now, they will grace the stage of the Walt Disney Concert Hall.
Award-winning artist, composer, and producer Ólafur Arnalds blends the beautiful, traditional sounds of piano with layering of electronic instrumentation. Though he has had a diverse career as a musician, playing in metal bands and touring in a dance-music duo, his solo work is always much softer and evokes complex emotions such as melancholy or nostalgia.