July 18, 2019 – Jose Iturbi Foundation – LA Philharmonic Celebrates Gustavo Dudamel 10 Year Anniversary – Hollywood Bowl – Hollywood, CA.

I have been to the Hollywood Bowl numerous times but never like this. The evening started off with valet parking right up against the backside of the Bowl with a lovely reception on the right side of the stage in the special events tent. There was amazing food and drink with lots of fun conversation. I really felt honored and blessed to be part of this annual event. Thank you so much Harlan Boll and Donelle Dadigan.

Donelle Dadigan is quite the angel and gives so much of herself day to day. She is the founder of the Jose Iturbi Foundation-Mr. Iturbi being her Godfather. She talked about all of the great things that he did in his lifetime and how he affected her life and career. She pointed out many of the people in the audience as well as their musical background. There were many celebrities in tow. Some political figures were there as well and gave the Foundation much deserved proclamations. This part of the evening was just so special-all under one tent for The Joe Iturbi Foundation and Gustavo Dudamel’s 10-year anniversary.

Celebrated fans and supporters of The José Iturbi Foundation scheduled to attend as special guests of Co-Founder and President, Donelle Dadigan, include: Burt Ward (Robin/BATMAN); Susan Olsen (Brady Bunch); Geri Jewell (Facts of Life and HBOs Deadwood); Roslyn Kind; (Critically acclaimed Recording Artist), Lee Purcell (Multi-Emmy nominee); Donna Pescow (Multi-Emmy and Golden Globe nominee); Composer Charles Fox (2x Emmy, 2x Golden Globe & 2x Academy Award nominee & Grammy winner); George Chakiris (Academy Award & Golden Globe winner); Lainie Kazan (Tony winner/My Big Fat Greek Wedding), as well as the stars of Knots Landing (Celebrating its 40th Anniversary later this year), Emmy nominee, Joan Van Ark; Emmy winner, Donna Mills; Emmy & Tony winner, Michelle Lee.

Among the special guests of the Jose’ Iturbi Foundation that offered remarks were: CHARLES FOX (Emmy and Grammy winning Composer): “What a fantastic night of music at Hollywood Bowl last night for the Jose’ Iturbi Foundation. Gustavo Dudamel and the LA Phil were extraordinary as usual with Khatia Buniatishvili was as exciting as it was beautiful and superbly performed. For several of the highlights from film music, a number of very talented members of YOLA (Youth Orchestra Los Angeles) sat in for some of the Philharmonic members on a number of chairs and played beautifully. The Jose’ Iturbi foundation has been for many years a major contributor and great factor in young musicians’ lives in helping them achieve their dreams.  Bravo for a great night”.

Lainie Kazan (TONY Winner/My Big Fat Greek Wedding): “I have so much respect for Jose Iturbi and even more so, when I see what his Goddaughter, Donelle Dadigan, is doing with the foundation that bares his name.”

Joan Van Ark (Knots Landing): “O-o-o-o-oh what a night! Dinner and a stirring concert performance under and with the stars . . . all for a chance to inspire and empower young artists to follow their dreams for a career in classical music  by supporting the Jose Iturbi Foundation. Totally unforgettable.”

Donna Pescow  (Saturday Night Fever/Angie? Carol of the Bells): “It was a magical evening at the Hollywood Bowl last night celebrating the 10th Anniversary of the brilliant Gustavo Dudamel. The extraordinary concert pianist Khatia Buniatishvili performed and the evening was sponsored by the Jose Iturbi Foundation.  What a spectacular night of music, inspiration and joy! There were fireworks at the Hollywood Bowl last night both on stage and off. It was a celebration of the LA Philharmonics Gustavo Dudamels 10th anniversary as conductor, the glorious Khatia Buniatishvili performed and it was all sponsored by the Jose Iturbi Foundation whose work continues the great mans legacy. It was joyous!”

Susan Olsen (Brady Bunch): “I am a movie soundtrack geek! So I was in heaven!!! I had just been googling Bernard Hermann earlier that evening!”

Lee Purcell (Valley Girl/Carol of the Bells): “What a wonderful evening we had with the Jose Iturbi Foundation at the Hollywood Bowl celebrating Gustavo Dudamels 10th Anniversary as the conductor of the LA Phil. with pianist Khatia Buniatishvili brilliantly playing Tchaikovsky 1st, the Youth Orchestra LA, and the glorious fireworks-it was truly a night to remember!”

Michele Lee (TONY Winner/Knots Landing): “Just spectacular.  What could be more appropriate? Celebrating the classic music of the past at The Hollywood Bowl, while supporting the future of classical music with the Jose’ Iturbi Foundation.”

Geri Jewell (Facts of Life/Deadwood): “As Donelle pointed out, I have an unusual history with regard to music.  I used to play the organ at my father’s funeral home. I loved to play and it instilled an early appreciation for the importance and the effect music has on an audience. Although often overlooked, because you cant see the music, it sets a tone for a gathering and any scene in a movie or on a TV series.”

Roslyn Kind (Critically Acclaimed Singer) “Music is such an extremely important part of my entire families life.  It is all around us, not only in our films and TV shows, but in our daily life.  It defines us. Supporting the efforts of The Jose Iturbi Foundation is paramount to our future as a human race.”

This Special Concert celebrating Gustavo Dudemel 10 year anniversary with the LA Philharmonic as Music Director and conductor. Gustavo Dudamel Conducts Rachmaninoff with the Piano solo by Khatia Buniatishvili. The program was wonderful and Khatia is one of the Seven Wonders of the World!

The Evenings Music Program:
Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No. 3 in D Minor, Op. 30.
Allegro ma non tanto.
Intermezzo: Adagio.
Finale: Alla breve.
Piano solo Khatia Buniatishvili.
Iconic Selections from Hollywood’s Golden Age:
Korngold – “March of the Merry Men”, from The Adventures of Robin Hood.
Herrmann – Suite from Vertigo, Prelude, The Nightmare, Scene d’Amour.
Steiner – Suite from Casablanca.
Waxman – Sunset Blvd. Suite, Youth Orchestra Los Angeles, YOLA National Institute.
Mancini – The Pink panther Theme, Youth Orchestra Los Angeles, YOLA National Institute.

With Gustavo at the helm of the LA Phil excitement abounds. He just ignites his orchestra and everything around him. What a treat to be a part of this huge honor for him!

José Iturbi Foundation: The José Iturbi Foundation was created in 1985 by Marion Seabury and Donelle Dadigan. This not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization was founded in memory of concert great, José Iturbi. The Foundation is dedicated to continuing the legacy of José Iturbi, to fulfill his wish to make classical music accessible and enjoyable to people of all ages and walks of life, and to fulfill his desire of bringing to the public’s attention today’s greatest emerging talents and prize-winning classical musicians. The José Iturbi Foundation has fulfilled his mission by sponsoring blockbuster concerts, holding international musical competitions, and showcasing professional classical music artists in the making.

José Iturbi Biography: José Iturbi was recognized as the world’s greatest classical pianist during the 1930’s – 1970’s. José Iturbi was the world’s most popular classical musician from the 1930’s until his death.

Iturbi’s talent was recognized at an early age. He started piano lessons at age 3, and graduated with first prize honors from the Valencia Music Conservatory at 14 years old. Iturbi received a scholarship to study at the Paris Music Conservatory where he spent his days as a serious student and his nights playing in a Paris café in return for one meal a day, a space to sleep in the café store room after hours, and a few francs. Iturbi always tried to find ways to make ends meet. No matter how difficult times were Iturbi was determined to remain in the greatest cultural center of Europe – Paris.

In 1913, Iturbi graduated from the Paris Music Conservatory with the first of all first prize honors. He then held the chair of Professor of Piano Virtuosity at the Geneva Conservatory of Music in Switzerland (a post once held by Franz Liszt) for six years until his concert engagements became too numerous to permit his required teaching schedule.

Throughout his long career, José Iturbi concertized to adoring fans and sold-out audiences in every corner of the world. It was commonplace at Iturbi’s concerts for the overflow audience to be seated on stage. This remained his standard from the 1920’s and for the next five decades through the 1970’s! Excitement always accompanied Iturbi on his concert tours!

What a glorious evening under the stars. Elegant, sophisticated and wonderful-just what the doctor ordered on a crisp summer night in Hollywood.


(I dedicate this review to my late dear friend Oscar Vazquez; he was from Barquisimeto, Venezuela, same as Gustavo Dudamel.Oscar is very missed, but always in all of our hearts.)

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