Grand Avenue is Downtown Los Angeles’s arts and cultural center where locals and visitors are provided ample opportunities to enjoy architecture, local arts, internationally acclaimed fine art, renowned live performances and ample fine dining experiences.
For the second year in the row, Grand Ave Arts: All Access — the local event that aims to provide free and open access to the venues and services of these participating cultural institutions: The Broad, Center Theatre Group, the Colburn School, Los Angeles Opera, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Los Angeles Central Public Library, Los Angeles Master Chorale, MOCA, The Music Center, REDCAT, and Grand Park — treated the public with access to ongoing live rehearsals, a chance to partake in various architecture tours, museum exhibition enjoyment, ability to view live performances, participate in workshops — basically explore all of what Grand Avenue has to offer for free!
My family and I decided to explore the grounds of Walt Disney Concert Hall since Grand Ave Arts: All Access is a one-day event that ends promptly at 5:00 p.m. and we already had a late start in today’s adventure (got to the venue by noon). There is so much ground to cover at this one venue alone! We were so glad we decided to take in the beautiful sights and fun pre-planned activities that the Walt Disney Concert Hall had to offer.
We began by taking in the famous stainless steel exterior designed by Frank Gehry:
We were subsequently invited to participate in the family bonding children’s art studio event of recreating a model-size rendition of the building using tin foil.
We moved on to the lobby area of the Walt Disney Concert Hall wherein we were treated to an all-day performance of LA Phil’s Nimbus.
We were also clued in on the wonderful “Classical Instrument Petting Zoo” event happening at the Concert Hall’s outdoor Blue Ribbon Garden. On the way to the instrument petting zoo, we encountered more magnificent sights of the building.
We explored the Walt Disney Concert Hall by joining the free guided tour, of which our tour guide provided a thorough breakdown of the Concert Hall’s history, construction of the exterior and the stories behind the various elements of the interior space, such as…
the intended carpet pattern (as well as the auditorium upholstery) bearing one of the favorite flowers of Lillian Disney (lilies):
the Frank font used for the Concert Hall’s beneficiary wall (designed to simulate the surface of the building exterior while not distracting from the overall design of the venue):
the contributions of architect Frank Gehry and other key contributors in the design and construction of the building:
the sights and sounds of the Organ Pipes:
and the state-of-the-art acoustic elements of the auditorium, of which all members of the guided tour were invited to explore at the end of the tour. It was especially awesome for me to enjoy John Williams’ Star Wars: The Imperial March (aka the Darth Vader theme) while sitting on one the Orchestra seats.
Also included in the tour is the story behind the outdoor Blue Ribbon Garden and how the Walt Disney Concert Hall created a wonderful outdoor setting to realize Lillian Disney’s wish for the public to have daily access to something so wonderful. We learned that the landscape design and the purposeful plantings of trees go hand in hand with Mrs. Disney’s vision for the public to enjoy a memorable outdoor experience year round.
The guided tour also educated visitors about the conceptualization and realization of the Rose for Lilly Fountain, the outdoor water feature constructed with Delft Porcelain built as a homage to Mrs. Disney’s favorite private collection of china soon after her death in 1997.
I hope you enjoyed my photo diary from today’s visit to the Walt Disney Concert Hall. If you haven’t already visited the venue already, I strongly suggest you do very soon!
Walt Disney Concert Hall
111 South Grand Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90012
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