Los Angeles Music Center

Los Angeles Music Center anaheimer

LA Music Center - Jerry Moss plazaThe Music Center is one of the largest performing arts centers in the country, and it is in downtown Los Angeles. 

The Performing Arts Center of Los Angeles County (better known as The Music Center) is home to the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, Ahmanson Theater, Mark Taper Forum, Roy and Edna Disney / CalArts Theatre, and Walt Disney Concert Hall.  

This is the place for you if you love classical music, ballet, opera, or theater. 

The area around this large complex is walkable, with a nearby metro station, a beautiful park, restaurants, coffee shops, and the iconic city hall building.

The Jerry Moss Plaza is a 35,000-square-foot outdoor urban oasis connecting three of the venues at the center. Beautiful fountains, sculptures, and trees greet visitors as they make their way to their show. 

The center also offers free or inexpensive events throughout the year, including the Los Angeles County Holiday Celebration, a Christmas Eve tradition.

Dorothy Chandler Pavilion

LA Music Center - Dorothy Chandler Pavilion - by Carol M Highsmith - WikipediaThe Chandler Pavilion is home to the Los Angeles Opera and Glorya Kaufman Presents Dance. It also hosted the Academy Awards for several years. 

Los Angeles Opera produces standard operatic repertory as well as new and rarely staged operas. Some of the great works staged here are The Ghosts of Versailles, A Streetcar Named Desire, and Nicholas and Alexandra. 

You can find a list of upcoming operas here. The list includes Tannhäuser, Cinderella, and Aida. 

The ambiance and grandeur of the Pavilion are breathtaking, with beautiful chandeliers, an expansive lobby, and spiral staircases.

The Chandler Pavilion was home to the LA Philharmonic before it moved to Walt Disney Concert Hall.

Walt Disney Concert Hall

LA Music Center - Walt Disney Concert Hall - WikipediaThis iconic part of the music center was added in 2003 and became home to the LA Philharmonic and the Los Angeles Master Chorale. 

Walt Disney's wife, Lillian, donated $50 million as seed money for this project honoring her husband, who loved the arts.

The exterior of the building is an architectural marvel with a riot of curves and reflections. At night, the multicolored lights turn it into a shining jewel in the middle of downtown.  

Inside, the floor, walls, and ceiling flow into each other, continuing the sense of delightful confusion.

The main concert hall looks spacious and elegant, with seats terraced around the stage and a stunning pipe organ towering above the orchestra.

LA Music Center - Walt Disney Concert HallDuring a recent visit, I got the chance to listen to a beautiful performance of Rachmaninoff's Symphonic Dances. The orchestra played it flawlessly, and the acoustics in this hall were excellent. 

Interesting fact: This piece was first performed on February 18, 1943. 

During intermission, the bar offered some basic cocktails, wines, and snacks. In my opinion, the selection needs some improvement. 

Also, by the time some people got their snacks, it was time to return to the performance. I was lucky to know that you can order your drinks and snacks ahead of time and have them ready on a table during intermission.

The Broad Museum

The Broad MuseumAlthough this contemporary art museum is not part of the music center, it is worth mentioning here. It is right next to the Walt Disney Concert Hall and offers a convenient stop before or after the show.

The museum houses a 2,000-piece collection of modern art that sometimes defies comprehension. Some look like a child threw paint on a canvas, while others are worth a second look. 

I was most impressed by the Infinity Mirrored Room – The Souls of Millions of Light Years Away. A mirror-lined chamber housing a dazzling and seemingly endless LED light display and the oversized dining set made me feel like a midget in the land of giants.