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Music Center's 50th-anniversary gala amps up energy to a fault
Music Center's 50th-anniversary gala amps up energy to a fault

Times, tastes, fashions and spectacles have changed in the past half-century. The Music Center has noticed. In 1964, the Memorial Pavilion, the first of the Music Center's four theaters and the one that would later be named for Dorothy Chandler, opened to a formal crowd, studded with stars. Women wore mink. Zubin Mehta conducted the Los Angeles Philharmonic in a program that ended with Beethoven's Violin Concerto featuring Jascha Heifetz as soloist. A couple of days later, Mehta led Beethoven's Ninth Symphony. Saturday night was the 50th anniversary of that opening gala, and it was time for a 2014 update. The curtain rose on four unidentified string quartet players, each...

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