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LA Phil 100

Celebrate the centennial of this landmark orchestra with “La Valse” by Ravel, Stravinsky’s “Firebird” and more led by three renowned LA Phil conductors: Zubin Mehta, Esa-Pekka Salonen, and current music and artistic director Gustavo Dudamel.

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♪♪ -Next, on 'Great Performances,' join the LA Phil for their 100th birthday celebration.

-It's poetry -- poetry and music.

-It's part of the heart of the city.

This is our celebration of a century of this city being, really, a light unto the world.

-Guys, right here. Thank you.

-It's amazing. It's 100 years.

-To me, the LA Philharmonic family is about the identity of a city that embraces the world.

-'LA Phil 100' is next.

[ Instruments tuning ] ♪♪ ♪♪ [ Cheers and applause ] [ Cheers and applause continue ] [ Cheers and applause continue ] [ Cheers and applause continue ] [ Cheers and applause fade ] ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ [ Music ends ] [ Cheers and applause ] [ Applause continues ] [ Applause continues ] [ Cheers and applause ] -A new chapter in the story of the Los Angeles Philharmonic began in 1962, with the arrival of a striking young conductor, Zubin Mehta.

-Yeah, I was shocked -- completely shocked.

They just asked me to take over.

-Zubin was 26, and he obviously was terrific.

-In 1964, Mehta and the orchestra opened the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, putting Los Angeles on the map.

-Reporters from all over the world were there, and, you know, Los Angeles was considered a cultural desert.

That was one of the more exciting nights, I think, for this town.

♪♪ [ Applause ] -Throughout the 1970s, Mehta and Executive Director Ernest Fleischmann expanded the orchestra's reach.

-We invented the 'Marathon' -- from 10:00 in the morning to 10:00 at night, we played 12 hours of Beethoven.

-The fearless young maestro valued excellence in every genre, collaborating with artists such as Frank Zappa and John Williams.

[ 'Star Wars (Main Title)' plays ] He expanded the orchestra's reach through 14 tours and dozens of best-selling recordings.

♪♪ Over more than 16 years of collaboration, Zubin Mehtaand the Los Angeles Philharmonic came of age.

What was once a good orchestra became a great one, and now the world was watching.

-Of course, experience I will never forget.

♪♪ [ Music ends ] ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ [ Music ends ] [ Cheers and applause ] [ Applause continues ] ♪♪ -The appointment of Esa-Pekka Salonen was a gamble.

-Morning.

Um, a pleasure in introducing Mr. Salonen.

-The very fact that they gave this orchestra to some guy from Finland who was completely unknown in this country -- [Chuckling] or any country.

♪♪ -But when Salonen conducted the Los Angeles Philharmonic for the first time, the connection was unmistakable.

-Esa-Pekka is totally brilliant in everything.

♪♪ He's also physically as clear and adept as anyone I've ever seen.

On the podium, he's a great athlete.

-While Salonen began his tenure at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, he ended it in an iconic new venue -- Walt Disney Concert Hall.

-We thought, 'Okay, this is a total fantasy, but a fantastic one.' [ Chuckles ] And now the hall has become an iconic building in Los Angeles, in the world.

♪♪ [ Cheers and applause ] -Salonen developed the orchestra's sound and versatility, presenting more than 120 premieres and over 50 commissioned works.

-When Esa-Pekka thinks of himself, he thinks of himself as a composer, so he sees the world through the lens of the composer.

So, of course he would do world premieres when he's here.

-Salonen and the orchestra also dreamed bigger than ever before, collaborating with innovators in theater, dance, and the visual arts.

-What we had, starting with Esa-Pekka, was a real reputation for daring.

-Under Esa-Pekka Salonen's direction, the Los Angeles Philharmonic reenvisioned what a 21st-century orchestra could be.

-The LA Philharmonic is a beacon of light, a place where tradition and innovation can be combined into something very powerful and popular.

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♪♪ -The thing about Gustavo is that his ambitions are enormous.

♪♪ -We try to create.

We are sometimes crazy, but beautiful crazy.

-A fearless innovator, Dudamel has pushed the boundaries of the orchestral experience.

♪♪ -He came out of El Sistema, of this program which is really about giving voice to kids, where they might not have the opportunity to have that voice otherwise.

-Dudamel's 2007 vision for YOLA, or Youth Orchestra Los Angeles, was a game-changer for the LA Phil and for the entire community.

-This dream of music as a fundamental human right -- this is the future of YOLA.

♪♪ Maestro Abreu always said, you know, start small, and from that, you get bigger and bigger.

Imagine a young boy from Venezuela arriving here and becoming the best friend of Frank Gehry, having this beautifully unique connection with John Williams, John Adams, Herbie Hancock -- all of these great people.

It's a dream still, you know?

Every time that I'm doing a concert with the orchestra, it's an event -- it's something very special.

-When he puts out his movements that's so powerful, we play like there's no tomorrow.

We actually give out 150% --the 50% we never thought we had.

-Built on the foundation laid by Zubin Mehta and Esa-Pekka Salonen, Gustavo Dudamel's compassion has shaped Los Angeles for the better.

-What we have developed is the soul of the orchestra and the commitment to bring morepeople close to classical music.

[ Cheers and applause ] [ Cheers and applause continue ] [ Cheers and applause continue ] [ Cheers and applause fade ] ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ [ Music ends ] [ Cheers and applause ] [ Cheers and applause continue ] [ Cheers and applause continue ] [ Cheers and applause continue ] [ Cheers and applause continue ] [ Cheers and applause fade ] [ Cheers and applause ] [ Cheers and applause continue ] [ Cheers and applause continue ] [ Cheers and applause continue ] [ Cheers and applause continue ] [ Cheers and applause continue ] ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ [ Cheers and applause fade ] ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ [ Music fades ] [ Cheers and applause ] [ Cheers and applause continue ] [ Cheers and applause ] -To find out more about this and other 'Great Performances' programs, visit pbs.org/greatperformances.

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