Tag Archives: Marc Lowenstein


The 100th-birthday celebrations of the late avant-garde composer, painter, essayist, pacifist, and early civil- and gay-rights activist Lou Harrison continue. This week, the LA Phil presents a rare, one-night-only performance of Harrison’s 1971 opera YOUNG CAESAR—directed by Yuval Sharon and conducted by Marc Lowenstein—at the Walt Disney Concert Hall.

1967, the Summer of Love, was a turning point in Harrison’s life. San Jose State invited him to join their faculty—providing a level of financial security Harrison had not previously enjoyed—and he met Bill Colvig, a musician and brilliant instrument-maker. Lover, best friend, collaborator, it was Colvig who suggested a same-sex theme for Harrison’s opera project, and the composer chose young Gaius Julius Caesar’s love affair with Nicomedes, the Orientalist king of Bithynia. The LA Phil production, part of their Green Umbrella series, stars Adam Fisher in the title role, Hadleigh Adams as Nicomedes, and Bruce Vilanch as the narrator.

Harrison had studied and absorbed his close friend Harry Partch’s theories about Just Intonation—a tuning system of corrected intervals and precise pitch. Since YOUNG CAESAR would incorporate world music from the East as well as the West, for its creation Harrison and Colvig built a gamelan of tuned metal slabs, dubbed “Old Granddad.”

YOUNG CAESAR (libretto by Robert Gordon) will be performed by the LA Phil New Music Group and experimental opera company The Industry. The choreography for this production is by Danny Dolan.

YOUNG CAESAR, Tuesday, June 13. Sold out.

WALT DISNEY CONCERT HALL, Music Center, downtown Los Angeles

See: laphil.com/lou-harrisons-capital-cs

(From top): Bust of Lou Harrison by Bruce Kueffler, Adam FisherHadleigh Adams, bust of Julius Caesar, bust of Nicomedes.

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This week at REDCAT, by Kyle Rosen—

The debut of two pieces (this and T’filat haDerech) and excerpts from an opera (Little Bear) by Marc Lowenstein will bring together a cast of musicians from a rapidly growing, increasingly compelling, experimental music scene. Lowenstein is a composer, conductor, singer, and director of the budding LA-based opera company The Industry, and his work traverses and collapses musical, textual, and even mediatic boundaries.

By turns playful and lyrical, Lowenstein’s compositional language reflects not only his groundness in the avant-garde tradition, but perhaps more importantly illuminates one of the positive directions in which that tradition—though undoubtedly splintered—might be headed. Replete with Buddhist, Sufi, and Hebrew texts, a cello concerto, and a foray into the world of children’s stories, Thursday night’s program will reflect the composer’s eclectic interest in a variety of musical forms and expand upon an already engaging body of work.


MARC LOWENSTEIN, Thursday, April 6 at 8:30 pm.

REDCAT, Disney Hall, downtown Los Angeles



Marc Lowenstein Photo courtesy of the artist.

Marc Lowenstein
Photo courtesy of the artist.