‘Sundays Live’ may be silenced

“SUNDAYS Live” -- the free chamber-music series broadcast live from the Los Angeles County Museum of Art -- is threatened with cancellation. The series, with a history going back to 1948, is sponsored by the Los Angeles Cultural Affairs Department. According to Bill Vestal, cultural affairs program coordinator and producer of “Sundays Live,” funding for the series runs out June 30 due to cuts in the city budget.

Vestal says a number of interested parties are attempting to raise $50,000, the approximate annual cost of maintaining the concerts. Saul Levine, president and general manager of KMZT-FM (105.1), which broadcasts the series at 6 p.m. Sundays, says the station “will do everything in our power to help the series survive.”

“Sundays Live,” which claims to be L.A.'s longest-running live broadcast series, began with occasional concerts at the old County Museum on Exposition Boulevard, moved to Barnsdall Park, the John Anson Ford and, after being taken over by the Cultural Affairs Department in 1985, the Bing Theater at LACMA. KMZT has broadcast the series since 1999.

Along the way, virtually everyone in L.A.'s classical music community has had a turn at the mike. It’s a springboard, says pianist Delores Stevens, who first played on the broadcast in the 1950s.


Up tonight: Caltech professor and pianist James Boyk, with a program of Bach, Schubert and Chopin.

-- Daniel Cariaga