Events | Eclectic Salon #2: Farewell to Ernst Toch's Bluethner Grand Piano

Los Angeles | October 18, 2017 | 7:30 PM

This program in the historic surroundings of Villa Aurora celebrates the diversity of the musical landscape of Los Angeles and is produced in collaboration with a variety of ensembles, some of which have been founded during the last decade, when L.A. became a true hub for new music. At the same time, we are honoring the rich musical culture of the European exiles of the 1930s and 40s, who profoundly shaped the musical scene in Southern California.

This concert marks the coming "retirement" of Toch's own concert grand,on permanent loan from the Toch Societywhich was a majestic presence in the Villa's Salon, though now being
reassigned to more intimate quarters at Villa Aurora.

Featuring Vienna-based pianist Anna Magdalena Kokits on the occasion of the release of her album of Ernst Toch’s piano music.

Introduction by Lawrence Weschler, author and grandson of Ernst Toch.

Vienna-born Anna Magdalena Kokits started playing the piano at age 4 and later studied with teacher and mentor Alejandro Geberovich (*Buenos Aires, 1948) at the Vienna Conservatory Private University. Still in her teens, Kokits performed at major venues across Europe and beyond and produced an album of sonatas by Hans Gál, Ernst Toch, Erich Zeisl and Karl Weigl. She is devoted to contemporary music, and particularly interested in rediscovering lesser-known or forgotten composers: her recording of solo piano works by Ernst Toch (1887-1964) was released on the Capriccio label in June 2017. Today, Anna Magdalena Kokits performs internationally and teaches masterclasses for young musicians.

Lawrence Weschler, the grandson of Ernst Toch and director of the Toch Society, was -for over twenty years- a staff writer at The New Yorker, where his work shuttled between political tragedies and cultural comedies. He is director emeritus of the New York Institute for the Humanities at NYU, and served as its director from 2001-2013.
His more than twenty books include Seeing is Forgetting the Name of the Thing Ones Sees (on California artist Robert Irwin), True to Life (on David Hockney), Mr. Wilson’s Cabinet of Wonder (on the Museum of Jurassic Technology); and Vermeer in Bosnia.
His website includes a section devoted to his writings on Toch and his fellow emigres in Los Angeles.

Ernst Toch (1887 – 1964) was one of Weimar Germany’s most celebrated composers. Fleeing the Nazis for California, he continued to write music, but found his work largely overlooked. Today, (…) his compositions are finally being reassessed and getting long overdue recognition. (The Guardian)


Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
32 variations in c-minor (1806)
Manuela Kerer (*1980)
Dla Rajun (2013)
Alexander von Zemlinsky (1871-1942)
Phantasies on poems by Richard Dehmel op. 9 (1898)
Vivian Fung (*1975)
from Glimpses: I. Kotekan (2006 - rev. 2016)
Ernst Toch (1887-1964)
Capriccetti op. 36 (1925)
George Gershwin (1889-1937)
Rhapsody in Blue, Solo Piano Version (1924)


Villa Aurora, 520 Paseo Miramar, Los Angeles, CA 90272

Admission is free
Please RSVP at or 310.454.4231

Street Parking is available on Los Liones Drive. Shuttle service starts at 6:30 pm from Los Liones Drive, off Sunset Boulevard two blocks North East of Pacific Coast Highway. Please do not park on the Topanga State Park Lot!


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