At the Celebracion gala kicking off the Disney Concert Hall’s season Thursday, L.A. Philharmonic prexy Deborah Borda said she could hardly believe that conductor Gustavo Dudamel took over the baton only a year ago.

Dudamel echoed the remark, saying, “I feel like I’ve been here for life but it’s only been a year.” And continuing in that vein, he pointed to Peruvian tenor Juan Diego Florez, adding this was only the second time the two had performed together, “though it feels like we’ve been together for many years.”

The afterparty in a tent on Grand Avenue included large overhead spheres that showed projections of the ongoing perf by Melissa Manchester. Guests included music men John Adams, Herbie Hancock, John Williams and Neil Diamond. – — Shalini Dore