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Caracas: Day 10

All good things must come to an end, and so must this tour. Today we packed up and headed on the bus to compete with the traffic headed to the coast for celebrating Carnival, a 5-day celebration observed in Latin America.

Caracas: Day 9

Mahler 8 with 1,400 musicians, check.  Live theatercast to the U.S. Canada and Argentina, check.  An extraordinary musical event that brings 10 symphonies, 2 orchestras and 1 conductor together, check.  What an unbelievable experience!   The day started out with a full-dress run-through of “The Big Tamale,” the eighth symphony of Gustav Mahler.  

Caracas: Day 8

  Buenas Noches!   Today was one full of events.  Early in the morning we set off for the cable car gondolas to climb the mountains directly north of Caracas; it was a serene ride on the way up with clouds coming in and out of view: A view of the city looking south southwest   By the time  we got to the top, it was very foggy and cool; very different from downtown!

Caracas: Day 7

Today we saw a true spectacle.  Four orchestras and two choirs, numbering 1300 musicians in total, put on a show for the LA Philharmonic, the media, and our MC for this Saturday’s live broadcast of Mahler’s 8th symphony John Lithgow.  This was a logistical mountain realized in perfect detail without a single hitch.  

Caracas: Day 6

Buenos Dias! Today was one of the pivotal ones.  Our first with the new choirs here in Venezuela, this rehearsal for Mahler’s 8th was a mass of people and a wall of sound created that swept through the hall and into our hearts.  

Caracas: Day 5

One more day, another fantastic journey.  Today we took an excursion to the Santa Teresa Rum Farm, approximately 1 3/4 hours from Caracas.  The bus ride to the hacienda was an adventure in itself, with many sights to see along the way: El Barrio Pintoresco For more photos taken on the way to the distillery, click on through!

Caracas: Day 4

Hello Mahler lovers! Today was another fabulous day in Venezuela.  We rehearsed four of the six symphonies we are performing across these 10 days of our residency here in Caracas this morning; we touched on spots and spent the second half of rehearsal getting acquainted with our soloist for Mahler’s 4th.  

Caracas: Day 3

Today I had the chance to spend a few hours with my 1000mm spotting telescope on the roof of our hotel- a great way to get a little more familiar with Caracas.  Our hotel is located next to the now-closed Aerodromo Francisco de Miranda, the base Hugo Chavez used during one of his initial coups in 1992.  

Caracas: Day 2

After our late arrival the night before, the orchestra enjoyed catching up on some sleep before our first acoustic rehearsal at the Teatro Teresa Carreño.  We were given a police escort on the way, something which we have been promised every time we embark anywhere on our buses: Stopping traffic: the LA Phil Once inside the arts complex, we had a chance to get a feel for the hall before tuning and brushing up on Mahler’s 9th.  

Caracas: Day 1

Today was our big travel day: LAX-MSY-CCS.  We had a pause in New Orleans to refuel the jet, acquire more food for the passengers and swap out the crew. Having debarked, we were each greeted with a broad smile and firm handshake by none other than Dr.