Pierre Boulez cancels San Diego appearance due to volcanic eruption

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French conductor Pierre Boulez has canceled his scheduled Thursday appearance in San Diego due to the lingering meteorological effects of last week’s volcano eruption in Iceland.

Boulez, 85, was scheduled to perform parts of his piece ‘Sur Incises’ at the University of San Diego as part of the Kyoto Prize Symposium, which honors the 2009 recipients of the Japanese prize.


The Thursday afternoon concert will go on as planned, but Boulez’s colleague Philippe Manoury will deliver the lecture portion using the conductor’s prepared notes.

Steven Schick is set to replace Boulez on the podium for ‘Sur Incises.’ Gloria Cheng, of the new-music group Piano Spheres, will perform some of the solo parts of the piece.

A spokeswoman at the University of San Diego said Boulez is currently stuck in Paris and is having a difficult time flying out due to the volcano eruption.

Japan’s Kyoto Prize for Arts and Philosophy is handed out on an annual basis, but musicians are only selected for the honor once every four years. Other musicians who have received the prize include Nikolaus Harnoncourt (2005), György Ligeti (2001), Iannis Xenakis (1997) and Witold Lutoslawski (1993).

Thursday’s concert will take place at the university’s Shiley Theatre, Camino Hall from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. Tickets are free but reservations are required.

-- David Ng

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