Saturday, May 3, 2014

Walt Disney Concert Hall night

We have access to a lot of events through the CPA (Caltech Postdoc Association) and the last of them was an evening at the Walt Disney Concert Hall with the Los Angeles Philharmonic. I'll tell you a little more details of this evening, and by the way, visit this monument!

The Walt Disney Concert Hall

For those who do not know, the Walt Disney Concert Hall is a concert hall made by the architect Frank Gehry and completed thanks to the donation of the wife of Walt Disney (50 millions plus 85 millions later!!!). This hall is the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the Choir of Los Angeles' home and may welcome about 2000 people.

Anecdote: The facade was originally to be made ​​of stone, but because of the over-cost, it was finally made ​​of metal skin. I think this is a happy result because these are the reflections that give all his style to the building! Within the hall is a huge modern organ whose facade was also drawn by F. Gehry with the help of the consultant organ Manuel Rosales.

Organ of  the Walt Disney Concert Hall
The interior of the hall is ok but is still a bit cheap with laminated coatings on walls and RER seats (French railroad public transport), we was a bit like being in a SNCF train station (National French railroad company).

Hall of the Walt Disney Concert Hall

Concert of the Los Angeles philharmonic

Before the concert, we ate there and we expected to find a coffee shop or a nice restaurant. In fact, we only found a self service with chips and chili! Not really the type of restaurant you would expect to find in this kind of place ! By cons, this is expensive and fortunately correct. We learned afterwards that there was an other restaurant much more chic ( French of course!) which seemed pretty good. So, next time we go to a concert, we seek it ... and if it does not cost too much, we will eat there!
Regarding the music, we went to listen to the Stravinsky Violin Concerto with Leila Josefowicz as soloist, and the Brahms Symphony No. 4 all led by Suzanne Mälkki (Music Director of the  Ensemble Intercontemporain). We knew neither one nor the other, but we really enjoyed the performance. (without being very critical either, I must admit!). By cons, we were really confounded by the musician dress code. Indeed, everyone was dressed as if they were shopping : jeans, sneakers, sweats of all colors and the soloist was even dressed in a kind of baggy pants half jogging! That was the same for the audience  (but it was expected). Except these details, we were impressed by the quality of listening angelanos not a single noise during songs and still better, no silly applause as soon as there was a silence. It may seem obsessive, but it's really enjoyable!!!

After the concert

L.A. by night
To end the evening, we went to the Edison bar and we were able to advantage one of the most prominent Los Angeles bars apparently (but not really impressed). The only interest of the bar is the decor and its neat style. The latter pays homage to the building in which the bar is located: a Fine Arts building constructed at the beginning of the century and having its own power generator in the basement for the first time with (where is now the bar). What is funny is then the facts were distorted and now people believe that this bar contains the old Edison's factory! (But this is wrong, of course). Another nice thing: we ran into an animation with a very nice trapeze dancer! Here's the poor quality video of the dancer, but that will give you a glimpse of what we could see!

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