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A protean John Zorn musical marathon at LACMA and UCLA
A protean John Zorn musical marathon at LACMA and UCLA

John Zorn is a defiant, protean musician, inescapable on the American scene everywhere it would seem except Los Angeles. But after a 25-year absence, he was back this weekend to proteate. Is that a verb? Maybe not yet. But Zorn made it one with a marathon on Saturday. It began at 10 a.m. at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art with a Syrian oud player performing music updating a traditional Jewish melodic style in front of a 9th-century BC Assyrian relief of an eagle-headed goddess. The Zorn day ended past midnight at UCLA with the composer wailing, like a certain phantom, on the Royce Hall organ. Zorn may become a verb as well. Zorn's defiance is attitudinal, in that he is a...

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