You know how hot dogs somehow taste better when you're outdoors? Sometimes so does music. So, the classics just might acquire a little extra flavor at this week's Marina del Rey Summer Concert, held under the stars at Burton Chace Park, when Frank Fetta conducts the Marina del Rey Summer Symphony performing works by Debussy and Copland as well as the evening's highlight, Rachmaninoff's Piano Concerto No. 3 . The “Rach 3,” as it's affectionately known by its fans, is such a difficult undertaking that even legendary pianist Gary Graffman bemoaned the fact that he hadn't learned it when he was a student and “too young to know fear.” But the apparently fearless Rufus Choi, winner of both the Grand Prize and People's Choice Award at the prestigious José Iturbi International Piano Competition, performs the work that made Van Cliburn a global superstar in 1958 when he beat out the Russkies for the gold medal at the Tchaikovsky International Piano Competition, and turned all of America on to classical music.

Thu., Aug. 6, 7 p.m., 2009

LA Weekly