After a century of outstanding classical music programming in Santa Barbara, CAMA could be forgiven for resting on its laurels, playing it safe, and taking a centennial victory lap, but complacency is not in the organization’s institutional DNA. On Tuesday, December 11, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra will perform a free community concert at the Granada in honor of CAMA’s 100th anniversary, and it’s going to be a special night thanks to the presence of master mandolinist Avi Avital.
At a mere 50, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra (LACO) may be a youngster in comparison to CAMA, but in that half century of existence the group has developed a worldwide reputation for its formidable interpretations of the classical repertoire and for its passionate advocacy of new and baroque music. This concert is part of the LACO’s Baroque Conversations concert series, and pairs two double violin concertos by Antonio Vivaldi with a complete version of the composer’s most famous work, The Four Seasons. The featured soloist for The Four Seasons will be Avi Avital, the outstanding classical mandolin player of his generation.
True to the series title, this will be a real conversation featuring four of the best violinists on the West Coast in works perfectly suited to hearing their distinctive styles in brilliant musical dialogues. Then, with the stage set for a composition that the audience will have heard many times played by violins, on comes Avital, whose mandolin will respond not only to the rest of the orchestra, but to the entire centuries-old tradition of instrumentation on this sublime piece of music. For those who wish to indulge in verbal dialogue, there will be a free pre-concert lecture by music scholar David Malvinni. For ticket reservations and information, call the Granada box office at 899-2222.