LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) –  For the first time in 18 months, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra filled the Walt Disney Concert Hall with the sounds of music.

The Saturday evening concert was the first in more than a year, since the venue was forced to go silent due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Jaime Martin, the conductor for LACO, said the energy that orchestra feels on stage from fans is exhilarating and something that they’ve all been eagerly waiting to feel again.

“I cannot tell you how long we have been waiting for this,” Martin said. “It’s the same for everybody. We’ve been waiting for months, more than a year and half doing concerts online. We’ve been playing concerts for empty house, for people to enjoy at home of course.”

Approximately 700 vaccinated guests were invited to attend the free event and concertgoers had to mask up, as well as show their vaccination cards, upon entry.

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“Putting on a concert like this, we would typically plan 18 months, two years in advance. This, we did in a matter of just a few months,” Ben Cadwallader, LACO’s executive director, said.

In normal, pre-pandemic times, the concert hall welcomed more than 2,200 audience members to performances.

The chamber orchestra will be playing its second live performance on July 1 in San Marino.

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