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PRESS CONTACT: Laura Stegman (310) 470-6321 Laura_Stegman@hotmail.com
LOS ANGELES JEWISH SYMPHONY,
LED BY FOUNDER/ARTISTIC DIRECTOR NOREEN GREEN,
PRESENTS "L'CHAIM!" (TO LIFE!):
A MUSICAL CELEBRATION OF EASTERN EUROPEAN CULTURE FEATURING GUEST ENTERTAINER MIKE BURSTYN
Also on the Program are Soloists Mark Kashper, Violin;
Zinovy Goro, Clarinet; and Yevgeniy Milyavskiy, Piano
Sunday, August 9, 2009, 7:30 p.m.
A spirited program showcasing Jewish and Yiddish music and songs of Russia, Poland and other Eastern European countries performed by artists rich with Eastern European roots is presented by the Los Angeles Jewish Symphony (LAJS) on Sunday, August 9, 2009, 7:30 p.m., at the Ford Amphitheatre. "L'CHAIM!" (TO LIFE!): A Musical Celebration of Eastern European Culture, features guest entertainer Mike Burstyn and LAJS Founder/Artistic Director Noreen Green, who leads the orchestra with soloists Mark Kashper, violin, Zinovy Goro, clarinet, and Yevgeniy Milyavskiy, piano, in an evening that toasts hallowed cultural traditions.
The first half of the program includes Wladislaw Szpilman's Piano Concertino, featured in the Academy Award-winning film "The Pianist" and written while the composer was interned in the Warsaw Ghetto. Rising pianist Yevgeniy Milyavskiy's performance represents the LAJS's artistic vision providing opportunities for young musicians to appear with a symphony orchestra. Also on the program is The Fiddler, based on a Yiddish Shalom Aleichem tale, written by American composer Elliot Finkel for violin, narrator and orchestra, spotlighting LAJS Concertmaster Mark Kashper and entertainer Mike Burstyn. Rounding out the evening's first half is To the Wedding with soloist Zinovy Goro, clarinet, by Grzegorz Fitelberg (1879-1953), the legendary composer/conductor internationally known as "the Ambassador of Polish Music" whose life was dedicated to promoting Polish art, culture, and music worldwide. The program's second half features Burstyn and the orchestra presenting music, songs and stories, adding their voices to international efforts to promote the revival of the endangered legacy of Yiddish language, culture and history.
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Since 1994, the Los Angeles Jewish Symphony, under the baton of Dr. Noreen Green, has been dedicated to the performance of orchestral works of distinction which explore Jewish culture, heritage and experience. It also serves as an important resource for aspiring composers and musicians. Dr. Green, LAJS founder and artistic director, is a renowned lecturer on Jewish music, and an accomplished educator. Under her baton, the orchestra has performed in concert with a number of artists including Billy Crystal, Tovah Feldshuh, Leonard Nimoy, Randy Newman, Theodore Bikel, Laraine Newman, Valerie Harper, Pat Boone, Lainie Kazan, Fyvush Finkel, Dave Koz, Marvin Hamlisch and others.
Burstyn, one of the world's most popular Jewish entertainers, has enjoyed a unique international career entertaining audiences on stage, screen and television, in nightclubs and on concert stages throughout the world. Born to a famed family of actors, his work includes "The Komediant," a documentary about his family, which won the1999 Israeli Oscar. He has received standing ovations and an Outer Critics Circle nomination as Meyer Lansky in "Lansky" and his second Drama Desk Award nomination for his performance in "On 2nd Avenue." He recently completed a concert tour of Israel celebrating his 50th anniversary in show business and co-starred with Valerie Harper in the national tour of "The Tale of The Allergist's Wife." He won an Outer Critics Circle Award nomination starring as Mike Todd in the Broadway musical "Ain't Broadway Grand" and a Drama Desk Award nomination for his portrayal of Mayer Rothschild in the critically acclaimed Off-Broadway revival of "The Rothschilds." He also starred on Broadway as P.T. Barnum in the Tony Award winning musical "Barnum," a role he recreated in the Dutch language production in The Netherlands.
Kashper, the Los Angeles Philharmonic's associate principal second violinist, has appeared as a soloist with the L.A. Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl as well as in many New Music Group and Chamber Music Series programs, collaborating with such distinguished musicians as Andre Previn, Emanuel Ax, and Yefim Bronfman. He has served as the LAJS concertmaster and frequent featured soloist since 1994.
Goro, considered a brilliant exponent of the clarinet in all types of music, including the highly specialized field of Klezmer music, has performed on countless television and motion picture soundtracks, and orchestra recordings for the Columbia, Decca, Philips and RCA Labels, and in the Mark Taper Forum's 1986 production of Ghetto. He has worked as a composer, orchestrator, arranger and clarinetist with the L.A. Chamber Orchestra and is currently LAJS principal clarinetist.
Milyavskiy, at the age of 23, is the Best American Prize winner of the 2008 Jose Iturbi International Piano Competition and has received numerous other awards, including grand prize at the 2006 Los Angeles International Franz Liszt Competition, a 2002 Spotlight Award from the Los Angeles Music Center, and the ASCAP Lieber & Stoller Award. He has performed in numerous solo, chamber, and orchestra appearances nationally and overseas and was a fellow at numerous music festivals.
The Ford Amphitheatre is located at 2580 Change Blvd. East, Hollywood, CA 90068. Tickets, priced at $36 and $25 and $12 for full-time students with ID and children 12 and under, are available at www.FordTheatres.org or 323 461-3673 (for non-visual media 323 GO 1-FORD).
DR. NOREEN GREEN, founder, conductor and artistic director of the Los Angeles Jewish Symphony, is also music director at Valley Beth Shalom in Encino, a renowned lecturer on Jewish music, and an accomplished educator. Since the orchestra's founding in 1994, she has brought neglected as well as new and familiar orchestral works on Jewish themes to the concert stage and has achieved worldwide recognition for her knowledge and skill in presenting this material. Under Green's baton, the orchestra has performed in concert with a number of artists including Billy Crystal, Tovah Feldshuh, Leonard Nimoy, Randy Newman, Theodore Bikel, Laraine Newman, Valerie Harper, Pat Boone, Lainie Kazan, Fyvush Finkel, Dave Koz, Marvin Hamlisch and more.
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MIKE BURSTYN is one of the world's most popular Jewish entertainers. Born in New York to a famed family of actors, Mike first walked out on stage at the age of three, stole the show from his father and hasn't looked back since. He has enjoyed a unique international career entertaining audiences on stage, screen and television, in nightclubs and on concert stages throughout the world. "The Komediant," a documentary about Mike and his family, won the1999 Israeli Oscar. He recently received standing ovations and an Outer Critics Circle nomination as Meyer Lansky in "Lansky" and his second Drama Desk Award nomination for his performance in "On 2nd Avenue." He recently completed a concert tour of Israel celebrating his 50th Anniversary in Show Business and co-starred with Valerie Harper in the National tour of "The Tale of The Allergist's Wife." He starred in a National tour garnering rave reviews as Al Jolson in the musical "Jolson." He won an Outer Critics Circle Award nomination starring as Mike Todd in the Broadway musical "Ain't Broadway Grand" and a Drama Desk Award nomination for his portrayal of Mayer Rothschild in the critically acclaimed Off-Broadway revival of "The Rothschilds." Mike starred on Broadway as P.T. Barnum in the Tony Award winning musical "Barnum" (a role he recreated in the Dutch language production in The Netherlands). Other Broadway credits include "The Megilla" and "Inquest," in which he was hissed and booed eight times a week as Roy Cohn. Off-Broadway Mike acted as host-narrator for the 92nd Street Y's famous "Lyrics & Lyricists" series, inaugurated City Center's popular Encores series in "Fiorello" and starred in "The Fishkin Touch," in Murray Schisgal's "Circus Life" and in the revival of Neil Simon's "The Prisoner of Second Avenue." His recent regional credits include acclaimed portrayals of Tevye in "Fiddler On The Roof"; as Nathan Detroit in "Guys & Dolls"; "1040," a new musical by Jerry Bock ("Fiddler On The Roof") and Jerry Sterner ("Other People's Money"); as Kurt Weill in "Berlin To Broadway" (Carbonell Award Nomination); "Hatikva," his tribute to Israel's 50th Anniversary and the national tour of the Broadway musical "Those Were The Days." Recent U.S. TV appearances include "As The World Turns," "The Cosby Mysteries," "Law & Order" and HBO's "Dog Watch" with Sam Elliot and Paul Sorvino. Mike won two Israeli "Oscars" for his screen portrayal of Kuni Leml, a kind of Israeli Forrest Gump. The Israel Cinematheque saluted his achievements in the Israeli film industry by honoring him at a special ceremony in 1997. Over the past decades he has had several successful television shows and been a recording artist for CBS Israel. He also hosted and starred in his own TV variety show in Holland. "The Mike Burstyn Show" was rated among the ten most popular shows in The Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg. Among the many guest artists to make their Dutch television debuts on the show were Mike's friends Ben Vereen and Chita Rivera, who recommended him to the producers of "Barnum." Mike has been honored through the years with numerous artistic, cultural and humanitarian awards. He is an honorary board member of Gilda's Club, a Trustee of the American Friends of the Hebrew University and served as Honorary President of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation of Israel.
MARK KASHPER (Concertmaster/Violin) was born in Leningrad (now St. Petersburg), Russia in 1954 and started taking violin lessons at the age of five. Until the spring of 1972, he studied exclusively under the personal guidance of Professor Aron Khnifel. A graduate of the Moscow Conservatoire (where he was one of the last and favored students of David Oistrakh), Kashper also graduated from the Leningrad Conservatoire. As a student, he received numerous awards and scholarships. As an Assistant Concertmaster and soloist with the Moscow Conservatoire Chamber Orchestra, Kashper performed extensively throughout the Soviet Union, Europe, and Latin America. He emigrated from the Soviet Union in October 1977. In February 1978, Kashper arrived in the United States, and three months later won an audition to join the Los Angeles Philharmonic. In September 1979, he was promoted to the first violin section, progressed steadily through its ranks, and was named the Orchestra's new Associate Principal Second Violinist in May 1986. In March 1987, Kashper won high praise from the audience and critics alike for his performance of the Luciano Berio Corale in its West Coast premiere with the Los Angeles Philharmonic under the direction of Pierre Boulez. He has also appeared as soloist with the L.A. Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl, as well as in many New Music Group and Chamber Music Series programs, collaborating with such distinguished musicians as Heinz Holliger, Andre Previn, Emanuel Ax, and Yefim Bronfman. An active recitalist and avid chamber music player, Kashper has been performing regularly in the Los Angeles area and throughout the United States. Since March 1994, he has served as the Concertmaster and frequent featured soloist with the Los Angeles Jewish Symphony.
Clarinetist ZINOVY GORO was born in the Ukraine, Kiev, and was educated at the State Tchaikovsky Conservatory in Kiev, with further training in the United States at the Trebas Institute of Recording Arts in Los Angeles. Prior to his arrival in America, Goro pursued a prestigious career as principal clarinetist in the State Honored Symphony Orchestra of Radio and Television. A brilliant exponent of the clarinet in all types of music, including the highly specialized field of Klezmer music, he has employed his talents to excellent effect in countless television and motion picture soundtracks, orchestra recordings for Columbia, Decca, Philips and RCA Labels, and in the Mark Taper Forum's 1986 production of Ghetto. Goro has worked as a composer, orchestrator, arranger and clarinetist with the L.A. Chamber Orchestra and is currently principal clarinetist for the L.A. Jewish Symphony.
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YEVGENIY MILYAVSKIY, piano, age 23, was the Best American Prize winner of the 2008 Jose Iturbi International Piano Competition. Born in Mozyr, Belarus, he began studying piano, at the age of 3. At age 8, he had a debut with the Belarus State Chamber Orchestra. After immigrating to the United States in 1994, he studied under a full scholarship at the Southern California Conservatory of Music, with Grant Horrocks. In 1998, he began his studies with the world renowned concert pianist, Professor Daniel Pollack, with whom he is now finishing his Master of Music degree in piano performance at the USC Thornton School of Music. Yevgeniy is a winner of numerous awards and competitions, including the 2002 Spotlight Awards at the Los Angeles Music Center, the 2003 NFAA competition in Miami, and the 2005 Southern Missouri International Piano Competition. He has received numerous prizes from the Lenis Fe Bland Foundation Competition in Santa Barbara, the Young Musicians Foundation, Los Angeles, and the YAPMF Music Festival, Palos Verdes. Yevgeniy is a Liberace Scholar, and a recipient of the ASCAP Lieber & Stoller Award. He has performed in numerous solo, chamber, and orchestra performances nationally and overseas and was a fellow to numerous music festivals. Yevgeniy was a grand prize winner of the 2006 Los Angeles International Franz Liszt Competition, as a result of which he performed all Liszt programs in Los Angeles, San Francisco, London, and the Franz Liszt Museum and Academy in Budapest. He also performed at the Spoleto Festival de Dui Monde in Spoleto, Italy for Francis Menotti, son of composer Gian Carlo Menotti. He has been working as an accompanist for the UCLA vocal department, and premiering music by colleague composers from Southern California. Yevgeniy will be continuing his musical studies as a D.M.A. Candidate at UCLA this fall in the studio of Pr. Walter Ponce. In May of 2009, Yevgeiny performed at the Wadsworth Theatre with the Los Angeles Jewish Symphony, in the world premiere of Eric Zeisl's Biblical Ballet "Jacob and Rachel."
Since 1994, the LOS ANGELES JEWISH SYMPHONY, under the baton of Artistic Director Noreen Green, has been dedicated to the performance of orchestral works of distinction, which explore Jewish culture, heritage and experience. It also serves as an important resource for aspiring composers and musicians. As part of its mission, the Los Angeles Jewish Symphony is committed to building "bridges of music" and understanding within the diverse multi-ethnic communities of our great city. The mission of the Los Angeles Jewish Symphony is to perform orchestral works of well known as well as not commonly recognized Jewish composers; establish opportunities for the presentation of new compositions by Jewish artists; serve as a professional resource for aspiring Jewish and non-Jewish musicians; act as an educational medium for Jewish music and composers; and provide educational opportunities for diverse populations of school age children. Since its debut performance in 1994, the Los Angeles Jewish Symphony has won local, national and international acclaim for its inspired programming featuring commissioned new works and many world premieres. Its performances at numerous prestigious venues locally and overseas have played to the ovation of standing room only audiences. In addition to its yearly concerts, the Los Angeles Jewish Symphony develops and conducts educational outreach programming for over 1000 school children each season. The Symphony's commitment to our future generations reflects its belief in the life affirming value and importance of music appreciation. The Los Angeles Jewish Symphony fills a cultural niche that revitalizes the legacy of Jewish music and spans the broad range of Jewish heritage from the nadir of adversity to the triumph of accomplishment. In the words of the Los Angeles Times, "...the Los Angeles Jewish Symphony seems committed to the axiom that diversity is a terrible thing to waste." www.LAJewishSymphonyorg.
EDITORS PLEASE NOTE:
Sunday, August 9, 2009, 7:30 p.m.
FORD AMPHITHEATRE, 2580 Cahuenga Blvd. East, Hollywood, CA 90068
"L'CHAIM!" (TO LIFE!): A Musical Celebration of Eastern European Culture
LOS ANGELES JEWISH SYMPHONY
DR. NOREEN GREEN, conductor
MIKE BURSTYN, guest entertainer
MARK KASHPER, violin ZINOVY GORO, clarinet YEVGENIY MILYAVSKIY, piano
The FORD AMPHITHEATRE is located at 2580 Cahuenga Blvd. East, Hollywood, CA 90068, just off the 101 Hollywood Freeway across from the Hollywood Bowl and south of Universal Studios. The grounds open two hours before showtime for picnicking. The Ford offers a number of dining options: a variety of food and beverages is available on site and box dinners for evening events may be ordered in advance. Patrons are welcome to bring their own food and drink. The Ford is disabled accessible. Portable wireless listening devices are available upon request. On-site, stacked parking costs $5 per vehicle for evening shows and $1 per vehicle for morning family shows. For evening shows only, FREE non-stacked parking serviced by a FREE shuttle to the Ford, for evening amphitheatre performances only, is available at the Universal City Metro Station lot at Lankershim Blvd. and Campo de Cahuenga. The shuttle, which cycles every 15-20 minutes, stops in the "kiss and ride" area. This event is part of the Ford Amphitheatre 2009 Season, a multi-disciplinary arts series produced by the Los Angeles County Arts Commission in cooperation with Los Angeles Countybased arts organizations.
For a complete season schedule, directions to the theater and parking information, log on to www.FordTheatres.org. 6-23-09