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December 2008 Archives

Mitchell Lurie dies at 86


Mitchell Lurie dies at 86
world-renowned clarinetist taught at USC

By Dennis McLellan
LA Times

Mitchell Lurie, a world-renowned clarinetist and clarinet teacher who taught for many years at USC and the Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara, has died. He was 86.

Lurie, who had been in ill health in recent years, died of pneumonia Monday at his home in West Los Angeles, said his son, Dr. Alan Lurie.

A Brooklyn native who grew up in Los Angeles, Lurie was the principal clarinetist for the Pittsburgh Symphony and then the Chicago Symphony in the late 1940s.

He then launched a long career in Hollywood as a top clarinetist for film studios and became a distinguished chamber musician, who may have been best known for his numerous performances with the Budapest String Quartet and the Muir String Quartet.

Read more about this at the Los Angeles Times website:,0,7400048,full.story

Dudamel to Take Over from Salonen

Gustavo Dudamel

Dudamel's baton entices a new wave of classical music lovers

By Roxana Popescu
San Diego Union Tribune

The high-energy Gustavo Dudamel will replace Esa-Pekka Salonen as music director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic next year.

The hardest part about preparing for a 10-minute telephone interview with Gustavo Dudamel is figuring out what to do with all that energy.

Not with it, actually, but without it: What if his legendary pep didn't come across in a chat crammed between six other interviews? What if he was worn out, or distracted? Because if there's one thing that pops out from all of Dudamel's five-star YouTube clips ? the one attribute both fans and skeptics say defines him ? it's that indomitable energy.

The second hardest part was getting a hold of the man. At 27, Dudamel is arguably the greatest conductor of his generation, considered by many to represent the future of classical music and the hope for its reinvigoration. This fall, he's on a national tour with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, which the La Jolla Music Society presents at the Civic Theatre tomorrow. Next spring, he'll take over as music director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic.

Read more about this at the Union-Tribune website: