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Arts and Entertainment

Classical Pick of the Week: Kickin' it Old School

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Contrary to popular belief, this video does not explain the history of the piano in its entirety. The harpsichord and the pianoforte were precursors to the modern piano, and you can hear both of them (and an organ) in this week's Classical Pick. Do you ever long for the good ol' carefree days of the 40's and 50's? You're in luck. This week, you'll have several opportunities to relive your baroque fantasies. This Wednesday, one of the oldest (and greatest) orchestras in the world, the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, is visiting one of the newest (and greatest) concert halls in the world, the Walt Disney Concert Hall. This orchestra has been around since 1743 (with alumni including music directors Mendelssohn, Walter, Masur, and Furtwangler) and is coming this Wednesday to perform some Beethoven with pianist Louis Lortie in tow.

You can also check out LACO this Saturday and Sunday in an all baroque program including Purcell, Vivaldi, and Bach. The Saturday performance takes place in Glendale at the Alex Theatre and the Sunday performance at Royce Hall in Westwood. If you're in the Pasadena area (or want some Brazilian music with your Baroque music?), the St. Cecilia Orchestra is performing a program with Bach, Vivaldi, and Villa-Lobos. That concert is next Sunday at 4 PM (tickets are 20 and 26 dollars, or 7 dollars for youth).

If you're still feeling the effects of Valentine's Day, the Harmonia Baroque has a concert this Sunday and next Sunday called "Love, Sweet Love" featuring recorders, viola de gamba (which is like an old school cello), harpsichord (old school piano), and baroque violin (I'll let you figure that one out). Guest soprano Maurita Phillips Thornburg will be performing a handful of arias (about love). They are at Concordia University this week and Peninsula Community Church next Sunday. Both concerts start at 4 PM.

Sundays Live at the LACMA makes its return next week with a concert featuring the fortepiano (the fortepiano isn't as hold as the harpsichord, but is the instrument that made way for the piano that we know today). Pianist Malcolm Bilson will perform works by Haydn, Mozart, and Weber. As usual, concerts start at 6. The First Congregational Church of Los Angeles is hosting a concert for dual organs featuring organ music from various composers including Bach. There is a suggested donation of 20 dollars and the church is in Downtown LA on Commonwealth.

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