Celebración! Gustavo Dudamel and the LA Phil with Juan Diego Flórez
Preview the Concert

THIRTEEN’s Great Performances spotlights the October 7 opening night concert of the Los Angeles Philharmonic and Music Director Gustavo Dudamel featuring renowned Peruvian tenor Juan Diego Flórez at Walt Disney Concert Hall. Actress Eva Mendes hosts the broadcast.

Great Performances is a production of THIRTEEN in association with WNET.ORG, one of America’s most prolific and respected public media providers.

Flórez and Dudamel, close friends off the concert stage, developed the special lineup of bel canto arias and popular Latin American canciones by Rossini, Granda, Lara, Moncayo, Grever, Gutiérrez and Márquez for Celebración! Gustavo Dudamel and the LA Phil with Juan Diego Flórez. The program will air Wednesday, December 29, 2010 at 9 p.m. ET on PBS (check local listings).

Watch a preview:

In describing the conductor’s interpretation of Rossini’s “Semiramide” overture, critic Mark Swed of the Los Angeles Times enthused, “Dudamel rode Rossini’s crescendos like a surfer on an epic wave, sending nature’s power into to the concert hall. He brought out wonderful instrumental details. The orchestra sparkled.”

The full program is slated to include:

ROSSINI Overture to La gazza ladra
ROSSINI “Principe più non se” from La Cenerentola
ROSSINI Overture to Semiramide
ROSSINI “La speranza più soave” from Semiramide
GRANDA (arr. Flórez) La flor de la canela
LARA (arr. Hayes) Granada
MONCAYO Huapango
GREVER (arr. Guinovart) Júrame
GUTIÉRREZ (arr. Pena) Alma llanera
MÁRQUEZ Danzón No. 2

As a bonus, viewers will also hear Flórez bring down the house all over again with two brilliant encores: “Ah! Mes Amis” from Donizetti’s “The Daughter of the Regiment” and “La Donna è Mobile” from Verdi’s “Rigoletto.”

The evening marks the beginning of Dudamel’s second season as the Los Angeles Philharmonic Music Director. Acclaimed worldwide as an exciting and compelling maestro, Dudamel began his tenure at the Los Angeles Philharmonic in Fall 2009, while continuing as Music Director of the Gothenburg Symphony in Sweden. Dudamel also enters his eleventh year as Music Director of the Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra of Venezuela.

On October 8, 2009, Dudamel led the Los Angeles Philharmonic in the inaugural gala at Walt Disney Concert Hall. This concert was also telecast on PBS’s Great Performances.

Dudamel was born in 1981 in Barquisimeto, Venezuela. In 1996, he was named Music Director of the Amadeus Chamber Orchestra. In 1999, he assumed the Music Director position of the Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra. Gustavo Dudamel was named one of the 100 most influential people of 2009 by TIME magazine and has been featured three times on CBS’ 60 Minutes.

Flórez’s virtuosic bel canto tenor voice makes him an ideal interpreter of Rossini, Donizetti and Bellini and much sought after by the world’s leading opera houses. His performances in opera as well as in concert have won him acclaim by the public and critics alike.

Born in Lima, Peru, he made his official debut at the Rossini Opera Festival in Pesaro (Italy) in 1996, substituting for the leading tenor who fell ill. He was considered an overnight sensation, drawing attention from theaters like La Scala, where he made his debut that same year, at the age of only 23.

Flórez, who is making his debut in the Walt Disney Concert Hall, has enjoyed great success at theaters such as the Metropolitan Opera, Royal Opera House (Covent Garden), Vienna State Opera, Paris Opera, Teatro Real in Madrid, Gran Teatro Liceo in Barcelona, Lyric Opera of Chicago, San Francisco Opera, Zurich Opera, Deutsche Oper in Berlin, and the Salzburg Festival.

He has recorded numerous solo CD’s and complete operas on CD and DVD, and received many prizes and decorations. In 2004 he was decorated with the “Orden al Merito” (Order of Merit) in the rank of “Gran Cruz” (Great Cross), and in 2007 with the “Orden El Sol del Perú” (The Sun of Peru Order) in the rank of “Gran Cruz” (Great Cross), the highest decoration from the Peruvian government.

Mendes first captured the attention of moviegoers in a small, but pivotal part in the critically acclaimed film, “Training Day.” Since then, she has had notable roles in “Stuck on You,” “Once Upon a Time in Mexico,” “Hitch,” “Ghost Rider,” “Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans,” “We Own the Night,” and “The Spirit.”

Celebración! Gustavo Dudamel and the LA Phil with Juan Diego Flórez was recorded for telecast by Bernhard Fleischer Moving Images, THIRTEEN in association with WNET.ORG, 3sat, and the Los Angeles Philharmonic.

Great Performances is funded by the National Endowment for the Arts, Vivian Milstein, the Irene Diamond Fund, the Starr Foundation, public television viewers, and PBS. Major support for the telecast is also provided by The Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Arts Fund, the LuEsther T. Mertz Charitable Trust and Jody and John Arnhold. For Great Performances, John Walker and Cara Cosentino are producers; Bill O’Donnell is series producer; David Horn is executive producer.

  • marie

    Hi iam a fan of juan diego florez Iwanted to when are you guys are going to put juan diego florez’s new procuction on the televison so my family I could watch it.
    let me now when.
    love marie

  • Leo_ny

    Didn’t you read this part? “…The program will air Wednesday, December 29, 2010 at 9 p.m. ET on PBS (check local listings).”

  • Chris

    The program is a bore. Florez doing stuff he has done for years and the rest of little interest. The Christmas in Vienna program he did would have been a better choice for PBS but it missed it.

  • Ell

    Oh my goodness! ! ! ! What a report Tavis Smiley has done! Awesome. There needs to be more done
    on the issue of music in ALL schools. Eventhough we have an example of extending of programs to children
    in Indianapolis with our (ISO)…..wonderful by the way, there needs to be some other methods to get the arts
    back into ALL schools. Bravo.

  • Elise Curran

    @Chris No, you’re a bore. Dudamel and Florez are an exciting combination of music-makers and it’s a pleasure to have real music on PBS for a change.

  • George V. Dickey, Ph.D.


    i was in tears watching your show about classical music. Mr. Dudamel [sp.?) so very, very much reminds me of the fictional Claude in ‘Body and Soul’ by Frank Conroy–which i just finished reading last night. I told my daughter recently that music is the only real magic i know. Conroy’s book and your show broughr me to my knees. When my 12 yr. old daughter plays ‘Greensleeves’ perfectly (she has been studying wirth a graduate of the Berkeley school of Music for 2 years}, I am so stuned–having been only a rhythm guartest in a garage band in the sixties, I see what I’ve missed, and am beyond joy when i see what music means to her. Thank you for this show, for maybe really touching some new folks who did not know they needed touching. if you are ever in touch with Mr. Dudamel, please give him–what–the message that he may really have an answer, and thank you for recognizing this. The poor, beleagered (sp?)planet needs something real and deep to stave off impending disaster. I believe you are onto one important answer: the magic of music+plus the power of children. With Highest Regards, George Dickey (george_dickey2003@yahoo.com)

  • Maura

    Bellissimo!! Thank you!

  • Cris

    how do i get a copy of this great concert!!. it just finished and i want a copy!!! :).. great performance!!

  • Nina

    Me too….how can I get a CD of this incredible performance!

  • William R.

    Simply incredible! Watching it in HD on our flat screen and it’s almost like we’re there. Truly, a magnificent, passionate performance that dazzles. Dudamel is a marvel. Bravo PBS!

  • cris
  • Victor Mosquera


  • Jeannine Léonard

    Bravo, bravo!!! c’est merveilleux

    J’ai adoré…

  • JulieG

    Does anyone know the name of the piece toward the end by the Mexican-American composer that Dudamel said is the most popular Latin piece of our time? Me encanta!

  • Silvana Graf

    Amazing performance! I am so proud to be a Peruvian right now…

  • Vicente Peralta

    Dudamel is as exciting as he is idiotic. His support and active promotion of the poorest Latino stereotypes sucks. Is he so empty that he is unaware of the fact that he is shooting himself in the foot (and insulting all of the so-called Latinos) by so doing?
    His performances are brilliant and compelling, but he has not shown any deep musical substance in the program. Just colorful music–and a great show. But that does not make for great music, for which intelligence and guts are needed–neither of which he seems to possess.

  • Michele


  • Iris

    Bravissimo!!!!! I am such a fan of Dudamel and the pairing with Florez was absolutlely magical. Thank you PBS!!!!!!

  • Mary Bruening

    Fantastic! What a week! Two nights ago Glenn Gould, and now this marvelous concert wityh Dudamel and Florez! I feel that I have waited a long time for this kind of attention to classical music on pbs, and am thrilled that there’s a possiblilty we may enjoy such fare in the future. Please, please fill our evenings with similar inspiration and pleasure – at least some of the time! A steady diet of history, politics, and war is not the programming I care to have in the evening. What better time for the arts than prime time?

    Many thanks again. My check will be in the mail tomorrow.

  • Dave M.

    Well, it was entertaining to watch a program where Dudamel tried to make the case to Tavis Smiley that classical music does not have to be elitist, immediately followed by the kind of event that helps propagate the view of classical music as elitist. Would just as soon have watched and heard the concert that the LA Phil gave for the backstage staff that Dudamel mentioned early in the Smiley show.

  • Gene King

    Chris I disagree with you completely. The Celebracion concert is fabulous any time anywhere.
    Dudamel and Florez are astounding.

  • John Canner


    Excellent !!

    Thank You.

  • Kathleen Villager NYC

    Mary, you said it all. Two nights ago, Glenn Gould, now this. I’m transported. And I’m renewing my pledge. Thank you, Gustavo and Juan. Thank you, LA Phil. Thank you, PBS.

  • Anne

    This concert – such beauty, joy, passion – such music!- amidst nightly news of disaster, fear and despair.
    This gives me hope that humankind may yet survive with our best instincts still alive.
    Thank you for this wonderful celebration of life.
    I join the others who asked if there is a cd so that we may buy it and relive the joy.
    And I salute maestro Dudamel for the intelligence displayed by his brilliant and compelling performance.

  • music lover

    Two great shows! Thank you, PBS, and Maestro Dudamel. People like Vicente Peralta are why I avoid dinner parties. Pompous self-indulgent prattle.

  • Tina P

    I stumbled upon this great performance while channel flipping tonight, and I was astounded. It was absolutely amazing!!!!!

  • P.J. Dorsey

    Thank you for expressing my lost feelings that music is surly is the one true MAGIC in our lives. That magical seed of music performance seemed to have been planted and bloomed in you in the sixties now a new seed,according to you, is blooming in your daughter to perform at a higher level, and are you not living in that renewed majic!
    I concur with you music transends sp? all our daily lives and I pray that it will continue to do so for generations to come.

  • Ricardo G

    PBS – thank you
    Mr. Smiley’s one hour show was entretaining and eye opening. It is too bad our school district starts our children with music lesson in 5th grade. my children continued music in high school and i am grateful for their commitment to the music.

    PBS – great “exposure” to great music.


  • P.J. Dorsey

    What a brilliant performance by Juan Diego Flores. How old is this young man ?

  • Humberto Capiro

    Yes people! We latinos have high art and artists such as Gustavo & Juan Diego! This is just the beginning! Get ready to know how much talent we have in Latin America! Gustavo will lead the way!

  • RHarlowe

    It is YOUR ignorance that is on display. Dudamel is brilliant.
    His music is vibrant, alive and contemporary.
    He is an inspiration.

    You, on the other hand, are just a poor, dumb schmuck!

  • Sally Hendrick

    As a native New Yprker, now living in “wild” Tennessee, it was the best Chrisrmas present I could have received to see the DUDAMEL/fLORES concert of October 7th shown on December 29th..

    To critisize the choices of pieces as “elitist” or “boring”, show the lack of appreciation for what people want to hear and see- two fabulous artists, enjoying every minute of their incredible work to an audience who adores every note they produce!

    It was a fantastic concert- mede me very home sick, but glad i can enjoy “the finer things in life” right in my own “den on the mountain!” Congratulations for giving me such joy! Happy New Year!

  • hdhouse

    Just a great hour and a half of television. Thank you.

    I read above where the programming was thought to be somewhat pedestrian. So let me get this straight. A very very good conductor with a great orchestra playing nearly flawlessly and a soloist who makes you just about want to sing along….and?

    I’ve got all the Mahler symphonies on CD and some of the more arcane Schoenberg and Webern if you want to borrow them. Frankly, I’d advise you to lighten up now and then and have some fun.

  • Byron

    What a wonderful program! I couldn’t agree more with the folks which describe it as a great way to spend an hour and a half. I enjoyed it so much that I have decided to become a PBS member and donate the money I would have been sending to the cable company to PBS to support this type of quality entertainment. To the people complaining, lighten up.

  • Barbara

    A bore?? This concert was fabulous! My husband and I watched it spellbound and smiling. The wonderful inter-action between Florez and Dudemal resulted in a mesmerizing concert.

  • Steve

    A wonderful program! Exciting and joyous. Why in the world is it not being repeated? I missed the first 1/2 hour. I want to hear the whole program. PLEASE!

  • Rick

    A magnificent program in musical and human terms. Dudamel and Florez are not only musicians of superb quality but above all they reach the deepest expressions of the most noble and spiritual human feelings. Hearing them is not enough. One must see their expressions, the soul coming out on their eyes and flowing all over their faces and body language. They open the doors for one to believe all the beautiful things one has has always wanted to believe in if the heart is light and open to miracles. Dudamel’s El Sistema USA is an example of ideals put into practice. His organization is helping hundreds of children to be great contributors to society through musical achievements, strength of character, maturity, and promise of citizenship of the highest caliber. Just listen what these kids have to say to see how Dudamel is much more than one of the most important conductors alive. I could not hold my tears throughout this concert.

  • leighx2

    BELLISIMO!! Absolutely incredible. Felt like I was floating on air the entire day after watching the concert. It moved my “SENSIBILITY,” as Dudamel keeps pointing out. INCREDIBLE!!

  • Maria

    What an experience!!!! I am so really proud of Dudamel and Florez, they represent our Latin American Heritage
    in such a magnificent way. If you are Latino, it is impossible not to cry during this concert, so many memories for
    many of us, interpreted with so much beauty and elegance. Also, Eva Mendez deserves a big “BRAVA” for an
    elegant and wonderful presentation.

    Un caluroso saludo suramericano para Gustavo y Juan Diego, un millon de gracias por la digna representacion
    de nuestros amados pueblos, que hacen con su implecable trabajo, Gracias por llenar nuestros corazones de
    emocion y alegria!!! De una venezolana que ha llorado de felicidad por un ALMA LLANERA tan increiblemente
    interpretada!!!!! Gracias, mil gracias!!!

  • Hung Lo from Japan

    Wrong!!! Perhaps this is indeed re-hashed, but very exciting and entertaining. Those in attendance seem pleased and as for my family and I, we will most certainly be graciously awaiting their next performance.

    Thank you PBS.

  • Jean

    Jan 3 2011
    Every new year I look forward to the Vienna performance but this year I was disappointed. It was completely lackluster in my opinion. Then I happened on the PBS performance Celebracioni and I was thrilled. It far surpassed the Vienna concert. Dudamel is unbelievable and so is the voice of Florez. Now I am hoping for PBS to repeat it so that I can see every moment. A total joy… and such talent in two young people. Their mutual admiration is also wonderful to see. A completely unforgettable experience.Loved every moment.

  • Ana Maria

    I missed the program and was told by a friend what a wonderful experience it is. Please let me know if you will have one more repetition. Please email me if you schedule it. Thank you.

  • EVD

    I was fine with Tavis Smiley’s interview until he made the ignorant comment about Dudamel’s command of the English language.
    I’m a black woman, and I’m embarrassed for you, Tavis.

  • EVD

    Oooooo, a hater!

  • Aceinthewhole

    I thoroughly enjoyed this program. Repeat or not, it is so satisfying to know that quality television does indeed

    still exist ! Television does not need to be something one sits in front of too enjoy, but can move freely

    throughout the dwelling and still enjoy the sounds being ejected from such an apparatus. Thanks again PBS,

    I’m sure we can be expecting a rebroadcast sometime in the future. . . .

  • http://dddsstwengbgf-ewrwer.net Alberto Paulus

    I am not sure if this information will be helpful for me, but I liked your site anyway

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