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The Modern Day Composer Refuses To Die: Frank Zappa’s ‘200 Motels’ (finally) gets world premiere
02.26.2013
03:19 pm

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The complete orchestral score of Frank Zappa’s notoriously difficult to play 200 Motels will be premiered in the composer’s hometown of Los Angeles, when the L.A. Philharmonic reconvenes for their tenth year at the Walt Disney Concert Hall on October 23rd.

“I believe in my heart of hearts that someone on the board (of the L.A. Philharmonic) said it’s about time,” Gail Zappa told Billboard:

Written mostly in motel rooms while Zappa and the Mothers of Invention were on tour, portions of the piece received a premiere in May 1970 at UCLA’s Royce Hall with Zubin Mehta conducting the L.A. Philharmonic. Portions of the score were used in Zappa’s film of the same name.

The Zappa family and its representatives have had ongoing conversations with the L.A. Philharmonic about presenting Zappa’s orchestral music, which is heard far more often in Europe than in the area he lived his entire life, Southern California.

“Musicians now are very familiar with the composers of their time, which I am glad about,” Zappa added. “Frank wrote music that challenges your playing ability and I think musicians embrace that.”

On October 29th, just six days after the LA premiere, the BBC Concert Orchestra, with Jurjen Hempel conducting, will perform 200 Motels at the Royal Festival Hall in London.

Below, Ringo Starr introduces Frank and the boys:

“The power of pop music to corrupt and putrefy the minds of world youth are virtually limitless.”

 

Posted by Richard Metzger

 

 

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