In Thursday’s (4/9) Orange County Register (California), Timothy Mangan writes, “Tuesday night’s event was Esa-Pekka Salonen’s last Green Umbrella concert as music director [of the Los Angeles Philharmonic]. A short film commemorated his 17 years in the position; when he stepped to the podium a standing ovation was his reward. … The program was specially designed, though, at Salonen’s request. Four young composers, more or less unknowns, were commissioned to write pieces, their only directive being, apparently, a limit of 20 musicians. … [Enrico] Chapela’s ‘Li Po’ gets the award for most energetic. … [Anna] Clyne’s ‘Within Her Arms,’ written in remembrance of her mother, was perhaps the most traditional work performed, an elegy of sorts for strings,” with 15 separate parts. On “Mouthpiece XI,” the composer Erin Gee “with two microphones in hand, vocally produced a series of clicks, pops, whistles, sputters, and fast mumbling in no language whatsoever, the instrumental forces chasing her as the tail of a comet. … Fang Man’s ‘Deluge,’ inspired by a Kandinsky painting of the same name, is a formidable work for tape and orchestra, strenuous, loud, sinister and celestial.” Salonen’s own “Floof,” written when he was 24, capped the program.

Posted April 10, 2009