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Classical Pick of the Week: Russian Romantics

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Alexis Weissenberg (a favorite of LAist) and Herbert von Karajan perform the Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto no. 2, which can be heard in its entirety in this week's classical pick. There are only a few classical events this week as we head into September, and the classical pick this week takes places at the Hollywood Bowl. Concerns about air quality are warranted, but as for now, the shows are still on schedule. The Hollywood Bowl tweeted yesterday that, "Air quality @ the Bowl is moderate to good, no smell of smoke from distant wildfires." If there are any changes to the schedule, we will update you as soon as we find out. But for now, the shows must go on. Both concerts are scheduled for 8 PM, on Tuesday and Thursday respectively.

Miguel Harth-Bedoya and Lynn Harrell (played the Dvorak Concerto at the Bowl, which Yo Yo Ma played this week) make their return to the Hollywood Bowl this week, with a performance of French composers. Although Édouard Lalo is French, his Cello Concerto has a Spanish influence (from his visit to Spain).The other pieces are all well known pieces from well known composers, you've probably heard the pieces even if you aren't familiar with the title. The rest of the program includes the Bacchanale from Samson and Delilah, excerpts from Carmen, and Bolero.

Thursday features Joyce Yang in her debut at the Bowl. Joyce Yang is an up and coming performer who is best known for taking home a few prizes at the 2005 Van Cliburn Competition at the age of 19. Another prize winner from that competition made her debut last year (Sa Chen), with the Schumann. The Rachmaninoff piano concerti are popular choices for younger performers, since the high level of difficulty for his pieces make them popular choices in competitions for the final rounds. Rachmaninoff's Vocalise and Rimsky-Korsakov's Scheherezade are also included. This is a great program for a romantic evening, and the piano concerto is one of the best known pieces of Rachmaninoff.