Reaching Across The Concert Hall Aisle

AEG Live argued Jackson’s prescription drug and addiction problems predated their deal and that it did not hire Murray or see he was a danger to the star. Even though Lloyds didn’t pay off on Jackson’s death, legal and insurance experts say artists’ coverage will now carry many more exclusions — specific instances of prior injuries, drug use and now perhaps negligence by staff that won’t be covered – giving promoters and insurance firms an out from paying claims if stars do not fulfill obligations due to negligence by a person on the star’s staff. “There will be exclusions for personal assistants, doctors, anybody but the performer,” said Jon Pfeiffer, an entertainment attorney in Los Angeles. “If an assistant or professional does something wrong, the artist will go after the assistant and not AEG.” Insurers wound up settling with Spears after she sued a group for almost $10 million in 2005, after she was forced to cancel the European leg of a tour due to a knee injury. Spears and her promoter had bought “contingency insurance” from several companies including Liberty Syndicate Management Ltd, French company AXA’s AXA Corporate Solutions, one of the more common policies that cover abandonment, cancellation or postponement of a concert. The companies initially refused to pay Spears for losses arising from the canceled shows, claiming she failed to disclose surgery performed on her knee five years earlier. Spears had passed the insurance company’s required medical exam a year before the tour was to begin. John Callagy, attorney for Spears in the case, told Reuters it became apparent the insurance companies were aware of her prior knee injuries from earlier insurance applications. Mary Thompson, president of Las Vegas-based Capstone Brokerage, said she expects Spears probably bought “contingency insurance” for her Planet Hollywood residency but now it includes new stipulations following the pop star’s widely publicized breakdown a few years go. Tougher drug use monitoring and higher insurance pricing arose after 23-year-old actor River Phoenix died in 1993 of a drug overdose while under contract for two movies. When he died, two insurance companies paid nearly $5.7 million to the producers of “Dark Blood” and “Interview With the Vampire,” but then sued his estate in a federal court in Florida to get their money back, claiming he violated his contracts by lying when he said he did not do drugs.

While some groups work to forge common ground, opposing voices seem content to stay in their own camps rather than explore new perspectives. The same could be said of the city’s music scene. In addition to being the political center of the country, D.C. boasts one of the most vibrant arts sectors of any city in America (it’s the choral music capital of the nation , according to Chorus America). Whatever music helps you get your groove on, chances are good you can find performers catering to your tastes in the nation’s Capital. In a city with such a wealth of musical offerings, most of D.C.’s choirs, orchestras, bands, and vocal groups are content — or even feel it necessary for survival — to brand themselves within specific stylistic lines. Playing it safe is less risky, and often more lucrative, than crossing boundaries or blending genres. A large chorus will always have an easier time selling tickets to Mozart’s Requiem than to a concert of lesser-known compositions, even if the latter is every bit as enjoyable and artistically worthwhile. So the baroque orchestras stick to Bach, and the jazz ensembles don’t stray too far from Duke Ellington. Audiences want things that are easy to categorize, and the District’s cultural institutions are eager to give them what they want. Rarely do you see an ensemble challenging you to broaden your perspective and take in multiple styles of music in one show — or even within a single song. Enter The Capital Hearings, a 12-voice a cappella ensemble that came on the scene in 2010. We began as a group of friends who wanted to broaden our own musical horizons and take our audiences along for the ride. Since the early days spent sifting through arrangements and experimenting with our sound over drinks in the casual confines of friends’ apartments, we have evolved into a group that thrives on breaking boundaries and shaking things up in the orderly Washington arts community. While our appropriately “punny” name for a D.C.-based group helps attract attention, we strive to create music that offers much more than novelty.

Concert Update

Best of Brew City: What to Do in Milwaukee, Things to Do, Events, Mobile Guide to Going Out

$17.50 to $26.50. Mimosa: 8 p.m. Dec. 6, the Rave. $16.50 to $26.50. Mythbusters Behind the Myths Tour: 7:30 p.m. Dec. 4, Milwaukee Theatre , 500 W. Kilbourn Ave. $48 to $128, on sale 10 a.m. Friday at the box office, (800) 745-3000 and . The Brian Setzer Orchestra Christmas Rocks 10th Anniversary Tour: 8 p.m. Nov. 16, 18 and 19, Northern Lights Theater, Potawatomi Bingo Casino , 1721 W. Canal St.

Concert hall celebrates 10th anniversary

Philharmonic for the 100th anniversary of the birth of Benjamin Britten. James Conlon will conduct War Requiem by Britten as a part of the Britten 100/LA celebration at the Walt Disney Concert Hall, and again at the Renee and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall. USC Thornton Symphony orchestra manager Josh Roach is excited to work with Conlon. Its a great opportunity for the students to work with a world-class conductor, James Conlon, gain exposure to one of the great choral-orchestral repertoire pieces of the 20th century, and perform in two fantastic venues: Disney and Segerstrom, Roach said. The Los Angeles Philharmonic will be playing this concert as a part of their Sounds About Town series, one of their many concert series of the season. Another event that is sure to excite is the Tchaikovskyfest. An eight-part concert series, Tchaikovskyfest will include various educational events in Los Angeles and end with a grand finale with both the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the Simon Bolivar Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela. With larger-than-life intensity, music director Gustavo Dudamel will conduct Tchaikovsky symphonies with the L.A. Philharmonic. As a young boy, I discovered Tchaikovsky through great recordings and he has had a very special place in my heart ever since, Dudamel said. In light of the L.A. Philharmonics 2012 Mahler Project, the orchestra will collaborate with partner orchestra Simon Bolivar Symphony Orchestra to bring to life the work of Tchaikovsky during their series beginning in February 2014. On top of a star-studded season, the Walt Disney Concert Hall is going a step further and is offering $10 tickets for select concerts throughout the season.

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