Los Angeles Music Preview: SONIC MASTERWORKS (Los Angeles Master Chorale at Disney Hall)

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by Frank Arthur on May 31, 2016

in Music


Eric Whitacre writes ridiculously sublime music, and I’m always happy to hear a 110-member chorale perform his work with pitch-perfect perfection. Thankfully, his work seems to be performed more often, perhaps due to the fact that he is a phenom with his social media compositions. This is one of the reasons Whitacre left Los Angeles five years ago to live and work in London, but now he brings his angelic music back to the City of Angels. The Los Angeles Master Chorale‘s (LAMC) has appointed Whitacre its first Artist-in Residence. His first concert takes place this Sunday, June 5, 2016 at Walt Disney Concert Hall–the home of LAMC and an extraordinary venue especially for choral performances (I find the less expensive seats in the balcony and upper terraces amazing).


The evening, Sonic Masterworks, concludes the LAMC’s 2015-16 season. You will hear some of the best a cappella works ever written. These global beauties from the last four centuries will slither into your soul and move your spirit to the rafters. Whitacre and the LAMC will perform two works: a choral setting of Depeche Mode‘s pop anthem “Enjoy the Silence” (see video below) and Swedish composer Anders Hillborg‘s “Mouayiyoum”, a musical evocation of the surrealistic beauty of the aurora borealis in the Scandinavian winter sky (this is why LAMC states it will create an aurora borealis of sound inside Disney Hall).

Also on the program: Grant Gershon (conductor) and Leslie Leighton (associate conductor) will conduct Ligeti’s conduct “Lux Aeterna” (which you’ll recognize from Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey), and other works by composers Moses Hogan, Abbie Betinis, Steven Stucky, Sydney Guillaume, Javier Zentner, and Baroque composer Antonio Lotti. This will also be LAMC’s first-ever performance of Gregorio Allegri’s revered Miserere.

Gershon makes no understatement when he wrote that “this concert is pure ear candy… sonically overwhelming pieces that…will bring out the complex and kaleidoscopic sonorities of the LA Master Chorale’s versatile voices.”


Antonio Lotti | “Crucifixus”
Gregorio Allegri | “Miserere”
Abbie Betinis | “Envoi”
György Ligeti | “Lux Aeterna”
Steven Stucky | “Three New Motets”
Eric Whitacre | “Enjoy the Silence” (Depeche Mode)
Anders Hillborg | “Mouyayoum”
Sydney Guillaume | “Au-delà du chagrin”
Javier Zentner | “Mi lumía”
Moses Hogan | “Elijah Rock”


Sonic Masterworks
Los Angeles Master Chorale
Grant Gershon, conductor
Lesley Leighton, associate conductor
Eric Whitacre, artist-in-residence/guest conductor
Walt Disney Concert Hall
Sunday June 5, 2016, at 7pm
for tickets, call 213.972.7282 or visit LAMC

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Javier Zentner September 23, 2016 at 8:15 am

I am honored that my “Mi lumía” was included in such a lovely program made up of very important composers. In case anyone is interested in more of my choral works, please visit my web site. Best regards.


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