Celebrating its 80th year of bringing music to the famed leafy glade in the Cahuenga Pass, the Hollywood Bowl filled itself to the brim with big time talent Friday to salute that feat and open the season. As tribute shows go, this one certainly seemed exemplary.
Each of the five performers inducted into the Hollywood Bowl Hall of Fame knew exactly how to score, and each one of them did. The diverse list of honorees for the Hall’s second year included Marilyn Horne, Bonnie and John Raitt, Stevie Wonder and Eric Idle, who stood in for the Monty Python team that was being inducted.
The proceeds of the Bowl’s opening night gala this year will help pay for an L.A. Philharmonic outreach program that brings big time music to Los Angeles kids. The L.A. Philharmonic runs the Bowl.
John Mauceri, conductor of the many-faceted Hollywood Bowl Orchestra, played host pretty much flawlessly, assisted by an enormous television screen that transmitted every little thing onstage to the last row of the 18,000 seat venue – including a cellist who couldn’t stop chewing gum.