Entertainment & Arts

Osvaldo Golijov misses yet another deadline for violin concerto

Osvaldo Golijov
Osvaldo Golijov has yet again postponed the premiere of his new violin concerto, a piece that was co-commissioned by the Los Angeles Philharmonic.
(Carlos Chavez / Los Angeles Times)

Osvaldo Golijov is one of the most in-demand composers working today, with commissions from major orchestras around the world. But the past few years have been difficult for the Argentine composer: He has missed deadlines for new pieces and was accused earlier this year of plagiarism.

On Thursday, Golijov whiffed again with the announcement that his new violin concerto -- already delayed -- will not be ready for its scheduled performances in January. The piece had been scheduled to be performed by the Philadelphia Orchestra, with violinist Leonidas Kavakos, in concerts in Philadelphia and Carnegie Hall.

The piece is a co-commission of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Berlin Philharmonic and London’s Barbican Centre. It had been scheduled to be performed at Walt Disney Concert Hall in May 2011, but the performance was canceled because the piece wasn’t ready in time.

A premiere in Berlin scheduled for earlier this year was also called off.


Golijov released a statement via Carnegie Hall on Thursday, saying that “some works have a pleasant birth, while others a difficult one. ... The violin concerto belongs to the second type, and I can only hope that when it is ready to see the world, it will be worthy of the artistry of Leonidas Kavakos, as well as that of the other artists and presenters who entrusted me with its creation.”

The January concert at Carnegie Hall is to feature Karol Szymanowski’s Violin Concerto No. 2 in place of the Golijov piece. 

In 2010, Golijov had to cancel a new song cycle that was to have premiered at Disney Hall, saying the piece would not be finished in time. 

Earlier this year, Golijov faced accusations of plagiarism regarding his piece “Siderus.” The composer was accused of improperly borrowing passages from Michael Ward-Bergeman’s “Barbeich.”


Golijov reportedly defended himself, claiming that his piece incorporated unused music from his score to the Francis Ford Coppola movie “Tetro." 


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