La lune est encore sur la mer

Esa-Pekka Salonen made his American conducting debut with the LA Philharmonic in 1984 at the tender age of 26. Back when LA Opera was still finding its sea legs, the orchestra wasn’t our strongest suit so whenever something really challenging was programmed they would hire the LA Phil. So the glorious David Hockney designed Tristan und Isolde, which was my first, in 1987 with Jeanine Altmeyer, Florence Quivar and Martti Talvela had Zubin Mehta and the Philharmonic spinning gold in the pit. The next year came Berg’s Wozzeck with Simon Rattle and his then-wife Elise Ross as Marie with a very abstract production and LA audiences stayed away in droves.  Read more »