Jediah McCourt

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So far Jediah McCourt has created 40 blog entries.

REVIEW: In a dazzling recital, two musicians unlock the acoustics at Baker-Baum Concert Hall

The San Diego Union-Tribune
Christian Hertzog
May 21, 2019

Conventional wisdom has it that winning a performance competition will boost visibility — especially for a previously unknown musician — but it’s no guarantee of a long-term career.

The Quadrennial International Violin Competition of Indianapolis may not have much public recognition outside of violinists, Hoosiers and music presenters, but past gold and silver medal award winners include Pavel Berman, Leonidas Kavakos, Augustin Hadelich and Simone Lamsma (who gave a compelling account of Bernstein’s Serenade last year with the San Diego Symphony.)

The La Jolla Music Society clearly paid attention to the 2018 competition. Taiwanese American violinist Richard Lin won its Gold Medal last year, and LJMS brought him to the Baker-Baum Concert Hall at The Conrad Sunday afternoon. There, he impressed listeners with his beautiful tone and easy virtuosity.

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REVIEW: In a dazzling recital, two musicians unlock the acoustics at Baker-Baum Concert Hall2019-05-24T11:51:51-07:00

REVIEW: David Finckel and Wu Han magical in Debussy and Britten sonatas — and wow the crowd with Mendelssohn

The San Diego Union-Tribune
Christian Hertzog
May 11, 2019

Cellist David Finckel and pianist Wu Han gave the Baker-Baum Concert Hall a satisfying workout Friday evening for the La Jolla Music Society.

Their well-curated program was a chronological survey of sonatas for cello and piano by J.S. Bach (if you consider cello as a substitute for the viola da gamba), Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Debussy and Britten. However, only Mendelssohn’s work conformed to the classical notion of a sonata: four movements, the outer ones in fast tempos, the inner a scherzo and slow movement.

The form of Bach’s Sonata No. 1 in G Major for Viola da Gamba and Keyboard, BWV 1017 was a precursor to the 19th-century sonata: slow introductory movement, fast movement, slow movement, fast. Finckel played with minimal vibrato, cleanly enunciating his phrases. Han approached Bach with a soft-toned clarity, and rubato was very sparingly used.

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REVIEW: David Finckel and Wu Han magical in Debussy and Britten sonatas — and wow the crowd with Mendelssohn2019-05-14T09:37:15-07:00

ARTICLE: Anat Cohen is making the clarinet cool for a new generation

The San Diego Union-Tribune
George Varga
May 10, 2019

Internationally celebrated clarinet master Anat Cohen is well on her way to making her chosen instrument cool again, be it for fans of jazz, Brazilian choro music or the genre-leaping hybrid she performs with both her quartet and her 10-piece band, the aptly named Tentet.

Never mind that Cohen — who earned 2018 Grammy nominations for Best Latin Jazz Album and Best World Music Album — started off with some doubts about the clarinet herself and instead focused on playing tenor saxophone.

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ARTICLE: Anat Cohen is making the clarinet cool for a new generation2019-05-10T16:04:29-07:00

ARTICLE: Under Inon Barnatan, La Jolla Music Society’s SummerFest begins a new era

The San Diego Union-Tribune
Beth Wood
April 14, 2019

It’s a rare occurrence, but venerable arts organizations can sometimes get a fresh start. Witness the La Jolla Music Society, which will launch its 34th SummerFest in its brand new home with its brand new music director.

Led for the first time by pianist and curator Inon Barnatan, the popular monthlong celebration of chamber music will be held at The Conrad Prebys Performing Arts Center in La Jolla from Aug. 2 to Aug. 23.

SummerFest has long been known to attract top-notch musicians from around the world, and this year is no exception. The lineup includes cellist Alisa Weilerstein, pianist Conrad Tao, soprano Susanna Phillips, violinist Augustin Hadelich, baritone Tyler Duncan, the Mark Morris Dance Group and jazz vocal sensation Cecile McLorin Salvant.

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ARTICLE: Under Inon Barnatan, La Jolla Music Society’s SummerFest begins a new era2019-04-15T12:00:13-07:00

PREVIEW: Eclectic musical offerings set for new Conrad Prebys Performing Arts Center

The San Diego Union-Tribune
George Varga
April 3, 2019

And then what?

This weekend will see the gala opening of the La Jolla Music Society’s $82 million Conrad Prebys Performing Arts Center, where more than a dozen artists are set to perform between Friday and Sunday. They range from pop vocal star Seal and ukulele virtuoso Jake Shimabukuro to such classical mainstays as Hilary Hahn, Wu Han, the Miro Quartet and Inon Barnatan, the new music director of the society’s annual SummerFest.

But that’s just the start of what is being billed as the “Coming Home Festival.”

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PREVIEW: Eclectic musical offerings set for new Conrad Prebys Performing Arts Center2019-04-04T10:08:32-07:00

PREVIEW: Top music picks in San Diego: Gary Clark Jr., Chris Thile, Morgan James, Father John Misty and more

The San Diego Union-Tribune
George Varga
March 24, 2019

Fresh from his latest Grammy Award victory in February, mandolin master Chris Thile is a San Diego native and co-founder of the bands Nickel Creek and Punch Brothers. His solo concerts usually mix original compositions, Bach cantatas and bluegrass staples into an intoxicating blend.

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PREVIEW: Top music picks in San Diego: Gary Clark Jr., Chris Thile, Morgan James, Father John Misty and more2019-03-25T11:36:02-07:00

PREVIEW: Top classical music picks in San Diego: Anoushka Shankar, San Diego Opera, Anthony Davis, Mainly Mozart Festival and more

The San Diego Union-Tribune
Beth Wood
March 24, 2019

Internationally renowned sitar player and composer Shankar, a former Encinitas resident, is as expert playing classical ragas she learned from her late father, Ravi Shankar, as she is with more contemporary styles.

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PREVIEW: Top classical music picks in San Diego: Anoushka Shankar, San Diego Opera, Anthony Davis, Mainly Mozart Festival and more2019-03-25T11:34:08-07:00

PREVIEW: Top dance picks in San Diego: Malashock Dance, San Diego Ballet, Mojalet Dance Collective and more

The San Diego Union-Tribune
Marcia Manna
March 24, 2019

The athletic and vibrant Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater celebrates its 60th anniversary with a San Diego tour stop. Two performances, each with a different collection of repertory, makes it hard to choose which day to see this must-see show. Tuesday’s lineup includes Robert Battle’s work “Ella,” a tribute to jazz great Ella Fitzgerald with steps that trace her scat singing. Wednesday focuses on the timeless dances of the late Ailey. Both shows, however, include the inspiring masterpiece, “Revelations.”

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PREVIEW: Top dance picks in San Diego: Malashock Dance, San Diego Ballet, Mojalet Dance Collective and more2019-03-25T11:31:38-07:00

PREVIEW: Spring classical picks: Mahler’s Eighth, Hannigan’s Ojai and ‘Central Park Five’

Los Angeles Times 
Mark Swed
March 21, 2019

La Jolla Music Society promises a new world-class concert hall, a 500-seat theater designed by Epstein Joslin Architects with acoustics by Yasuhisa Toyota. It opens with a wide-ranging gala that includes violinist Hilary Hahn, pianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet, ukulele phenomenon Jake Shimabukuro and dancer Lil Buck.

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PREVIEW: Spring classical picks: Mahler’s Eighth, Hannigan’s Ojai and ‘Central Park Five’2019-03-22T16:23:49-07:00

PREVIEW: Tour celebrates the legacy of Alvin Ailey, whose dance company turns 60 this year

The San Diego Union-Tribune
Marcia Manna
March 21, 2019

Robert Battle likens the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater’s diverse repertory to a buffet of delicious dance offerings.

The company is celebrating its 60th anniversary with a San Diego tour stop next week and Battle is its third artistic director, chosen in 2011 by Judith Jamison, who took over for Ailey when he died in 1989.

The New York-based company presents two evenings of dance, presented by the La Jolla Music Society. Both nights feature the moving masterpiece “Revelations,” a work created by Ailey in 1960, set to a suite of spirituals that reflect all of the emotions of worship, from angst to joyous gratitude.

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PREVIEW: Tour celebrates the legacy of Alvin Ailey, whose dance company turns 60 this year2019-03-25T11:27:24-07:00