Hitler’s emigres & exiles in Southern California 1

Ideas & Opinion · Music

Prominently marked in my calendar for February 16 is a book talk at the L.A. Central Library’s ALOUD series by my friend Dorothy Lamb Crawford.

Dorothy, a musicologist whom I met at the Ballets Russes centenial celebration in Boston last year, writes about the brilliant gathering of composers, conductors, and other musicians who fled Nazi Germany to relocate to L.A. windfallShe examines the lives, creative work, and influence of sixteen performers, fourteen composers, and one opera stage director, who joined this immense migration beginning in the 1930s.

I recently wrote about one composer in this group, Eric Zeisl. The occasion was his major work “Jacob and Rachel” getting new choreography from Los Angeles dance troupe BodyTraffic.

The short version of Zeisl’s story is here. You can read the full story in the Los Angeles Times

In her book Crawford presents portraits of Igor Stravinsky, Arnold Schoenberg, and the other musicians while considering their influence as a group—in the film industry, in music institutions in and around Los Angeles, and as teachers who trained the next generation. The book reveals a uniquely vibrant era when Southern California became a hub of unprecedented musical talent.

At the talk in Pacific Palisades Crawford will be joined by Barbara Zeisl Schoenberg, the daughter of Eric Zeisl and and daughter-in-law of Arnold Schoenberg.

Tuesday, Feb. 16, 7 pm
Dorothy Crawford in conversation with composer/conductor William Kraft: ALOUD series at the LOS ANGELES CENTRAL LIBRARY
Wednesday, Feb. 17, 7:30 pm
Dorothy Crawford in conversation with Barbara Zeisl Schoenberg at VILLAGE BOOKS, 1049 Swarthmore Ave., Pacific Palisades 

Thursday, February 18, 7 pm
Dorothy Crawford talk at VROMAN’S BOOKSTORE, 695 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena.

One comment on “Hitler’s emigres & exiles in Southern California

  1. Emma Lewis Thomas Jan 25,2010 11:33 pm

    What about mentioning Pia Gilbert? Is she in the book? Composer, pianist, good friend of many of the persons you mention above, especially the Schoenberg family. Professor Gilbert taught at UCLA for many years in the Dance Department created by Alma Hawkins in 1963 and composed music for dance and theater in Los Angeles for many years. When she retired, she moved to New York and continued teaching at Juilliard, where she still teaches a class, according to George Dorris, co-founder (with Jack Anderson) and co-editor of Dance Chronicle (with Jack also), whom I saw two weeks ago in New York. She is amazing!

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