Friday, February 26, 2010

Learning from the Bolshoi Master

Talented young dancers from Academy of Dance, Anaheim Ballet, Cal State University, Long Beach, California Conservatory of Dance, Chapman University, Irvine Valley College, Maple Conservatory of Dance, Pacific Coast Academy of Dance and UCI participated in a special master class conducted by Bolshoi Ballet dance coach Victor Barykin, above with pianist Svetlana Sokolova. The photo was taken on part of the set of Bolshoi’s Don Quixote in Segerstrom Hall.

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Thursday, February 25, 2010

Bolshoi Wows Opening Night Audience!

Exuberant Center ballet fans said last night’s opening of the Bolshoi Ballet’s Don Quixote was unlike any they could recall in Segerstrom Hall in many years. As the Los Angeles Times wrote, “Before you could say fouetté, opening night of the Bolshoi’s six-day run turned into a high voltage evening of spectacular dancing, temperamental artistes, and hollering from the balconies.” It was the sort of performance that does remain long in one’s memory. Following the opening, the cast, Center donors and Dance Series underwriters gathered at Scott’s for a celebratory party hosted by the restaurant. Among the crowed were Center President Terry Dwyer and his wife Amy, seen below with Ivan Vasiliev, and Center Executive Vice President Judy Morr with his co-star, Natalia Osipova. Performances run through Sunday, February 28.

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Wednesday, February 24, 2010

What's New, Buenos Aires?

Here's some news for everyone who couldn't get enough of The Music of Andrew Lloyd Webber. The New York Post is reporting that the critically acclaimed West End production of Evita is headed to Broadway.  The Post also reports that an offer has been made to none-other-than Ricky Martin to portray Che in the production, set to be directed by Michael Grandage of London's Donmar Warehouse.  No word yet on whether the pop star has accepted.

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See the Center on NBC’s Chuck

Last week the cast and crew of the action-comedy television series Chuck traveled from Burbank to film scenes in the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall. The Concert Hall was used as a location for some climactic scenes taking place during an eventful night at the symphony. We’ve been sworn to secrecy so we can’t give too much away, but the episode they taped deals with an intriguing international plot about an assassin. To see the Concert Hall’s debut on Chuck, tune into NBC on Monday, May 10 at 8 p.m. The episode is titled “Chuck VS the tooth.”

Photo above: Zachary Levi who plays secret agent Chuck and Josh Gomez who plays Chuck’s buddy Morgan Grimes in between takes at the Center

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Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Rave Reviews for the OC Register's Tim Mangan

Tim Mangan, the Orange County Register’s classical music critic, stopped by the Center today – not to review a performance but to talk to the volunteer docents. The docents give free public behind-the-scenes tours of the campus and its various theaters. They invited Tim to give an inside look into his job as a critic. Tim discussed everything from how he prepares for a concert, which includes reading scores and program notes and listening to recordings, to sharing his philosophy about reviewing – he says he’s listening for quality. The docents loved hearing what Tim had to say and quizzed him on the local classical music scene. Tim will be back at the Center this week to critique Kathleen Battle and Olga Kern and the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra in the Concert Hall. To read Tim’s reviews and more, check out the OC Register’s arts blog at For more information on free tours, click here (Tim is pictured above with docents Arlene Steinart and Beth Ruegger.)

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Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Calling All Andrew Lloyd Webber Fans

Our traveling flip cam caught up with several of the soloists from The Music of Andrew Lloyd Webber during a rehearsal in New York City last week. Click on the video above to hear from Broadway’s very own Howard McGillin, Laurie Gayle Stephenson, Kathy Voytko, Kevin Kern and Deone Zanotto during some of their down time. We can’t wait to see everyone here soon! The Music of Andrew Lloyd Webber plays Feb. 16 – 21.

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Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Having "Revelations" at Santa Ana High School

Students in the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater residency at Santa Ana High School demonstrated their talents as dancers and choreographers on Thursday, February 4. Click above to see the video. The week-long residency was held in conjunction with the Ailey’s engagement here March 2-7 and was underwritten by J.P. Morgan/Chase. Nasha Thomas-Schmitt, Co-Director, Arts in Education & Community Programs and National Director of AileyCamp, explained to guests what the kids associated with dance, emotionally, intellectually and physically, and directed a demonstration of their progress. Attending was Santa Ana Unified School District Superintendent Jane Russo, Santa Ana High Principal Julie Infante and Myeisha Gamino and Carla James from J.P. Morgan/Chase. A second residency was also held last week at Lathrop Intermediate School in Santa Ana.
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Friday, February 5, 2010

Learning Who, What, Where

Today, third-graders at George Washington Carver Elementary in Santa Ana enjoyed a performance by one of the Center’s Arts Teach artists, Imagination Machine. They performed Who, What, Where. Not only was it terrific fun (especially on a rainy morning), but the students were shown how to create stories using three important ideas – who, what, where. Who is in their story, what is the story about and where does it happen? During the morning they selected ideas by random, from which Imagination Machine’s artists and the children conceived tales that took place in a car wash and on a pirate’s treasure hunt and impersonated a lawyer, an elf, a shark and a valentine.
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Thursday, February 4, 2010

Kelli O'Hara the Teacher

Broadway star Kelli O'Hara took a break from her busy performance schedule to teach a master class for local college students last month during her engagement here. Watch the video to see what Kelli had to say about working with such talented singers and also what the students learned and took away from the class. A huge thanks to Kelli for sharing her passion and experience!
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Monday, February 1, 2010

Catch The Phantom on Today

Howard McGillin, one the stars of The Music of Andrew Lloyd Webber which visits the Center later this month, will appear on NBC's Today this Wednesday (Feb. 3) at approximately 10:25 a.m. PST. Theater fans may recognize Howard for his record-setting appearance as The Phantom of the Opera, a role he performed more than 2,500 times on Broadway. On Today, he will be interviewed and the audience will also be treated to a live performance. You can catch Howard on stage while The Music of Andrew Lloyd Webber plays here February 16 - 21.
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