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Classical 101

Gustavo Dudamel: Walter Mitty dreams becoming reality

Walter Mitty, James Thurber's ineffectual dreamer, would be jealous of Gustavo Dudamel.  You remember  Walter Mitty - a wartime pilot one minute, an emergency room surgeon the next - fantasies all played out in his mind as he lived a rather mundane existence.

In the music world, there is no greater dreamer than Gustavo Dudamel, for whom no dream is too big. Â The difference is, he is not content to live out his fantasies in his mind.

Gustavo Dudamel believes that if he can dream it, it can become reality through sheer force and determination. In his role as Music Director of the L.A. Philharmonic, he is focused on transforming that venerable institution into America's most successful orchestra.  In an age of salary cuts and cutbacks in the Arts and elsewhere, his agenda is ambitious and, apparently, attainable. Read Critic's Notebook: Gustavo Dudamel wraps up an ambitious year (L.A. Times)