Cher Public

Ennis del Mar! Il storpi montano splende come un santo altar

“The cast, to a member, embraces every chance…” Anthony Tommasini goes to Brokeback Mountain. [New York Times]

  • Krunoslav

    “Try to re-member the kind of September…”

  • Clita del Toro

    Puccini could have written Brokeback Mountain: Le Fanciulle del West???

    • figaroindy

      Perhaps Ennis should have sung “Always Through the Changing” -- sounds like the same ending.

      Completely unrelated -- saw “Nabucco” at Florida Grand last night -- first time I’d seen that opera, and enjoyed the piece a lot. Some good singing, although some uncertain moments. I believe the Abigailles are double cast between Maria Guleghina and Susan Neves. I saw Guleghina -- some good moments, a couple very splatted notes -- seems to be a disconnect to the very top notes…interesting piece, though, and lots of good ensemble/chorus stuff, too. I see why this is such a difficult role for the soprano -- it’s all over the place, and runs the gamut completely!

    • javier

      weren’t they in the south?

    • Angelo Saccosta

      I Fanciulli, Clita darling, or on second thought, maybe you have it right !!!

  • A. Poggia Turra

    I think Tony T. is overthinking a bit -- I loved the pacing and the quieter interludes. Remember, we are in desolate high country much of the time, to me the overtly lyrical parts remind us that the world and its realities are all too ready to intrude.

    At no time last night did I feel bored or antsy as regards the pacing of the score. YMMV, of course.

  • manou

    OK -- as we say in French I give my tongue to the cat: please explain the title of this post.


    • WindyCityOperaman

      (He’s kind of doin’ a take on Gioconda’s Enzo aria. At the Hoffnung music festival, same thing was done to conductor Norman Del Mar, but not sure any of you youngins’ know about that)

    • La Valkyrietta


      You have to wax poetic. I think the title is brilliant. Get into a Ponchielli mood, think of Bergonzi or Corelli and then instead of Cieeeeeeelo e mar, go EEEEEEnnis del mar. It’s a Gioconda without Zinka.

      • manou

        Thank you both -- I did get the Cielo e Mar reference, but could not work out “Il storpi montano”. I guess is a kind of Italian rendering of Brokeback Mountain, but if so it might have been expressed differently. I am putting it down to poetic licence (with a “c” because I am in London).

        • La Valkyrietta


          I see now what motivated your post, the perhaps violence done in using “il storpi montano” for “l’etereo velo”. I think “il storpi” is fine, it does have the “l ” and “r” sounds in “l’etereo”. The violence is done when trying to sing montano in place of velo. I see why you say it might have been expressed differently. This illustrates how dangerous it is to abandon the “original” composers give us and make adaptations, translations, arrangements and what have you, as something is usually lost. Still, it is amusing.

  • Ilka Saro

    One of the two cowboys is named Ennis Delmar.

  • Quanto Painy Fakor

    Assuming that the music is not going to bore people who might be tempted to leave before the end of the opera, the biggest mistake might be not having an intermission for cruising. What a lost opportunity for potential Spin and Marty wannabees.

    • Henry Holland

      When my brother (also gay) and I were in junior high, we used to park ourselves in front of the TV after school for Spin & Marty and The Hardy Boys. I had a crush on David Stollery, he had a crush on Tommy Kirk and we were both madly in love with Tim Considine.

      Thanks for the good memories, QPF!

      • Quanto Painy Fakor

        How fortunate you had a brother with whom you could share you fascination. I had forgotten all about The Hardy Boys

        • Henry Holland

          [Dismissive wave of hand] Oh, not *those* Hardy Boys, those feather-haircut fops Cassidy and Stevenson, no, Considine and Kirk were the real deal.


          Yeah, it was cool to have a gay brother, we didn’t really talk about it at the time, but years later we laughed at how we’d rush home for certain shows. Mmmmmm……Tony Dow on Leave It To Beaver and Billy Gray on Father Knows Best……mmmmmmm.

          • Quanto Painy Fakor

            What a blunder! Sorry.

            and his rival for our attention, Paul Petersen

      • operaassport

        Parker Stevenson. Be still my heart. I loved every time they did a surfing episode so he could strip. He was a college athlete and it showed.

        Shaun Cassidy always looked like a teenaged girl to me.

        How about Bobby Sherman in Here Comes the Brides?

        • -Ed.

          Bobby Sherman! Yes, yes, I remember having a copy of Teen Beat or some such magazine that had a photo spread of him in speedos at a swimming pool. I kept it hidden in the bathroom, behind the clothes hamper where no one would ever look lol. Or is that TMI? He’s still around, last I looked he was driving an ambulance in SoCal.

        • Grane

          For me it was Richard Warwick in Last of the Mohicans. Didn’t realize that was him in IF… till I was long grown. He died of AIDS, very dad.

          • Grane

            Er, sad.

  • Quanto Painy Fakor
    • Henry Holland

      Consensus from those reviews: libretto is too wordy, there’s unnecessary characters, Wuorinen’s music has nice touches but is too busy in that modernist way, the staging is good not great.

  • sfmike

    “…despite the pulsing, incisive performance that the conductor Titus Engel draws from the orchestra.” The unintentionally risqué descriptions just keep coming…

  • operaassport

    Oh, Tony, member and embrace all in the same sentence!

  • m. p. arazza

    ”As of now, the only definite plans to present “Brokeback Mountain” elsewhere are for a new production at Theater Aachen, in Germany.”

    No doubt this has been amply pointed out, but I can’t help thinking that Levine has actually been a champion of Wuorinen’s music, no? We’re not talking about Nico Muhly here. (And Wuorinen, I see, even wrote a birthday piece, “Praegustatum for James Levine.”) I’m not sure why I can’t easily imagine Levine conducting “Brokeback” at the Met, but stranger things have happened…

    • You’re right. If I recall, Levine programmed a lot of Wuorinen during his time at the BSO.

  • Camille

    I must applaud TT, for once, for not including among his ‘members’ his old fallback standup guys, “husky, dusky, earthy, & strapping”. Mebbe I’d better proofread to see if I missed them for I find it fairly incomprehensible he hasn’t employed them guys.

    Quite the most enjoyable review I’ve read of his, in a coon’s age.