Cher Public

One Saturday in November

My figures show it’s still too early to call Ohio, but other races are more decisive. Today’s chat has some strong contenders!

11:00-2:00 LRT KLASIKA: LA TRAVIATA from Paris. Natalie Dessay is outperforming herself, putting this firmly in the 3 F.K.s.

11:40-1:10 BARTOK RADIO: Bernadette Wiedemann Recital. Nate Silver is mum on this one, and it may go to the Supreme Court, even though it’s not the repertoire the Supremes are comfortable with.

1:00-4:30 WFMT American Opera Network: LA TRAVIATA from Houston. An Albina Shagimuratova Violetta cannot be gainsaid, or even pronounced after one or two beers. 3 F.K.

1:00-4:30 BBC 3: FAUST from Opera North. Would the BBC even be airing this if it were from — say — Fresno? 3 F.K.

1:00-4:30 CBC TWO: TOSCA from COC. Just one letter keeps this from being a porn site. Delavan and Pieczonka struggle valiantly, and you can always tune out the tenor. 3 F.K. Speaking of bad Cavaradossis, did anyone else hear the TOSCA from Sabadell today? ooo, dogies!

1:00-4:00 DEUTSCHLANDRADIO KULTUR, also ESPACE 2 at 2:00: DER SCHATZGRABER. Perennial candidate Franz Schreker is banking on sheer unfamiliarity to gain acceptance and the win. 2 F.K.

1:00-3:00 DWOJKA POLSKIE: Franck’s STRADELLA. A total unknown scores an upset. Sample it and you’ll probably keep listening. 1 F.K.

1:00-5:00 FRANCE MUSIQUE: FIDELIO from Munich, Meier, Kaufmann. Safely in the 2 F.K. column.

1:00-5:00 KBYU: XERXES from San Francisco. One of the strongest Conservative contenders. Safely 2 F.K.

1:00-4:00 NPR World of Opera: Bellini’s ZAIRA. Come for the controversy; stay for the snooze. 1 F.K. for the boredom factor.

1:00-5:00 RADIO 4 NETHERLANDS, also DR P2 at 1:20: BORIS GODUNOV from Madrid. 3 F.K. Groissbeck came into the race early, but wasn’t helped when Gertseva replaced Uria-Monzon.

1:00-5:00 RADIO CLASICA DE ESPANA, also LYRIC FM at 2:00: Delius’ A VILLAGE ROMEO AND JULIET. If you can’t get any sleep at the Bellini, this one will probably be deserted. 1 F.K., unless you like to argue with yourself in the dark.

1:00-4:00 RADIO OESTERREICH: IPHIGENIE EN AULIDE from Vienna. 2 F.K. but the only thing on the list with negative electoral votes.

1:00-5:00 RTP ANTENA 2: TRISTAN UND ISOLDE from Bayreuth. 3 F.K. with Theorin and Smith.

1:00-6:00 WCNY: FIDELIO from Houston. If you’ve got the stomach to slice-and-dice Karita Mattila, bring 3 F.K. with you.

1:00-3:00 WRR: THE MERRY WIDOW. Anybody can F.K. Thomas Hampson, but it takes a real man to F.K. Felicity Lott.

1:30-4:00 BARTOK RADIO: LA CLEMENZA DI TITO – from Vienna. I call this gold, not least for Garanca, which means it’s open for Batter-the-Bobolink. 3 F.K.

2:00-5:00 RADIO SLOVENIA: GIOVANNA D’ARCO. Years from now, your street cred will depend on your being able to say, “I knew from the very start that Maria Agresta would never last.” 3 F.K.

2:00-4:30 RADIO STEPHANSDOM: ALCESTE. Anne Sophie von Otter is running on her record, which makes this a win. 2 F.K.

2:00-5:00 RADIO TRE: FALSTAFF from ROH. Maestri and Martinez are solid, but there are plenty of nits to pick elsewhere. 3 F.K.

2:00-5:00 SVERIGES RADIO: DON GIOVANNI from La Scala. This one’s got it all — sharps, flats, sags, wobbles — it’s like a retirement village beauty pageant. 4 F.K.

3:00-6:00 LATVIA RADIO KLASIKA: DER FLIEGENDE HOLLANDER from Bayreuth. Despite Pieczonka, this one goes down to defeat. 3 F.K.