Malibu Seen: The Sound of Music Is Finally On

Gustavo Dudamel lifts his baton to bring the sounds of greatness back to the Hollywood Bowl.

After a long year-and-a-half, it is finally summertime, COVID-19 is getting quiet and that means it’s time to pull out your fuzzy blankets, stack your wicker picnic baskets and coolers with goodies, and hit an unforgettable evening at the famed Hollywood Bowl.

It was a horrible wait, but bowl and LA Philharmonic fans are ecstatic to hear the heavenly sounds of music courtesy of the “Dude”—Gustavo Dudamel—and his talented band.

The bowl makes its debut after an 18-month intermission due to the terrible pandemic, which amounts to the first lengthy intermission in the bowl’s 98-year history.

Being away from the stage, the Phil has problems of its own and plunged toward a $150-million budget shortfall.

But the bowl is trying to mend ties with its beloved community. A few days before the bowl’s opening night dress rehearsal there will be a free concert for frontline workers to thank them for all their hard work and heavy lifting. 

Some guidelines for COVID remain in place; social distancing rules will be around for the time being. But if the state fully reopens by June 15, as expected, the outside auditorium can operate at more like 80 percent capacity. Other guidelines include monitors who will roam the grounds reminding concertgoers to wear their masks and maintain social distancing. 

Gustavo Dudamel will be putting on several appearances including classic tunes by Beethoven, Gershwin, Mozart and guest performances by Viola Davis as well as the traditional fireworks spectacular.

Then, there are the musicians, who have taken a big hit of their own. But bowl officials say they are doing their best to rehire most of the 300 seasonal employees who were laid off from the bowl last year. That number would normally be about 1,000, but this year it slims down to about 800 because of a lower audience capacity.

So, when it comes to the bowl, celebrate! 

There are some COVID-19 clouds lingering, but we are finally seeing some light at the end of the tunnel. And best of all for music lovers, the bowl is back!