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Lila Downs, Punch Brothers, Yann Tiersen coming to Luckman

June 8, 2012 |  6:00 am

Lila Downs
Folksy Mexican American singer Lila Downs, bluegrass-focused string quintet the Punch Brothers and French composer Yann Tiersen are among the artists slated to appear at the Luckman Fine Arts Complex during the 2012-13 season. Downs will open the season, one that takes a global approach to music and art, on Sept. 22. The Luckman is located just east of downtown on the campus of Cal State Los Angeles.

Spain's Concha Buika, whose mix of flamenco, soul, jazz and African rhythms earned her an album of the year nomination at the 2008 Latin Grammys, will perform on Nov. 17. Just days earlier on Nov. 10, celebrated Cuban jazz pianist Chucho Valdés will appear with his quintet. Valdés' 1970s group Irakere is credited as one of the defining Afro-Cuban jazz acts. 

Tiersen's performance on Jan. 26 will be a celebration of his cinematic work, as selections from his famed scores to "Amélie" and "Goodbye Lenin!" will be highlighted. Also of note is the first Los Angeles performance from Yoann Lemoine, who, in his musical persona as Woodkid, crafts intimate, avant pop. The Paris-based Lemoine is perhaps best-known in America for his music video direction (Katy Perry's "Teenage Dream" and Lana Del Rey's "Born to Die"), and he'll perform at the Luckman on Nov. 3. 

This upcoming season the Luckman Jazz Orchestra (LJO) will pay tribute to genre greats over a four concert series. The music of Kenny Dorham, Sonny Rollins, Slide Hampton and Jimmy Heath will be honored, and contemporaries such as Barbara Morrison, Carmen Lundy, Ernie Andrews and Dwight Trible will appear throughout. 

Other highlights include a concert from Georgian pianist Khatia Buniatishvili (Feb. 23), the worldly electronics of Israel's Idan Raichel Project (Jan. 19) and Canada's hip-hop ballet group RUBBERBANDance (March 9). Tickets for all Luckman events will go on sale June 15 via Ticketmaster. Tickets can also be purchased over the phone by calling the Luckman box office at (323) 343-6600.

Below is the full 2012-13 schedule: 

Sept. 22: Lila Downs
Oct. 6: LJO: Dorham tribute featuring Barbara Morrison
Nov. 3: Woodkid
Nov. 10: Chucho Valdés
Nov. 17: Buika
Dec. 1: Punch Brothers
Jan. 19: Idan Raichel Project
Jan. 26: Yann Tiersen 
Feb. 9: LJO: Heath tribute featuring Carmen Lundy
Feb. 23: Khatia Buniatishvili
March 9: RUBBERBANDance 
April 6: LJO: Hampton tribute featuring Dwight Trible
April 20: Northwest Dance Project
June 8: LJO: Rollins tribute featuring Ernie Andrews
June 15: Raiford Rogers Modern Ballet


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-- Todd Martens

Image: Lila Downs: Credit: Barbara Davidson / Los Angeles Times