Yuja Wang and that little orange dress. Discuss.
When the young Chinese pianist Yuja Wang wore her little orange dress a few weeks ago at the Hollywood Bowl, there was a whooping reaction from the audience. When Times music critic Mark Swed wrote about Yuja Wang's little orange dress, there was a reaction on the blogosphere. It was, let's say, mixed.
Many blog posts, comments and tweets asked: Is there an appropriate -– explicit or implicit -– dress code for such performances? If so, did Wang violate it? Should classical music critics comment on a female musician's attire?
In fact some critics –- Swed included -– have noted the unique performance attire of musician Cameron Carpenter, who plays the organ in an assortment of flamboyant, high-fashion-meets-just-gotta-be-me outfits. (For anyone interested in seeing Carpenter up close, he’s scheduled to perform in a free concert -- reservations needed -- at the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall on Oct 2.)
Read the full Times story on classical concert attire, including an interview with Carpenter. And in an accompanying Critic's Notebook, Mark Swed writes about how the incident -- if not the dress -- may have been blown a bit out of proportion, with a some history on concert dress.
Unfortunately, one voice missing in the whole debate is that of Yuja Wang herself. Despite repeated requests, her management company declined to make the musician available for the story. Which means we’re left to glean the only clue to how she might feel about the whole brouhaha from the comment posted Friday to her @yujawang Twitter account that might be construed as a reference to the controversy.
It simply said: “live and let others live.
If you’d like to add your voice, we’d love to hear it, so please weigh in. Was Wang’s Hollywood Bowl outfit distracting, classy or something in between?
Share your views in the comments below, some of which may be published soon in the Los Angeles Times.
-- Adam Tschorn
Photo: Yuja Wang taking a bow after playing Rachmaninoff's Third Piano Concerto at the Hollywood Bowl. Credit: Lawrence K. Ho / Los Angeles Times