Cher Public

  • grimoaldo: How wonderful that so many people all over the world saw this fabulous opera, one of the landmarks of Western civilisation, in... 8:56 PM
  • gustave of montreal: white Caucasian and Christians ? 8:38 PM
  • DerLeiermann: When I went to the Cav/Pag HD last year it was almost full capacity. And there were plenty of youngsters. I saw a lot of... 8:08 PM
  • Porgy Amor: About practically everything getting out on DVD nowadays Not the case with Met HDs. There have been fewer of these released in... 7:50 PM
  • decotodd: Yes the audiences at LA Opera are generally younger and more diverse than the HD crowd at my theater, too (Beverly Hills/Century... 7:29 PM
  • fletcher: I go to almost every Met HD broadcast in downtown Los Angeles. I’m always the only one there under 30, usually under 40,... 7:13 PM
  • armerjacquino: The audiences at the Met HDs I’ve been to in London have been largely in their 30s and 40s. 6:46 PM
  • javier: this is great news. 6:21 PM

Play ball

An opera house is good for other things besides opera performances, cher public, such as (for example) discussion of off-topic and general interest subjects.


  • rossifigaro says:

    wondering if the rusalka will make it to YT -- do hope so. curious to hear comments on the vienna state production which was streamed last week. (rather get the idea that their streaming venture is not all that successful) also understand the chicago lyric is presenting a new rusalka (McVicar?) with fleming having an advisory role -- all very interesting.

    • Bill says:

      Wednesday evening was probably my farewell to the Schenk Rusalka production which I saw 6 times
      in Vienna (all with Benackova) then 6 times with Benackova that first season it was done at the Met
      and several times each in the 4 revivals at the Met with Fleming. Though the realistic production has been crucified on these pages by those (like Cieca) who want an edgier Regie drama, but for me this
      production has held up well though the cast of the
      earliest days of its performances in Vienna (Benackova, Peter Dvorsky, Nesterenko, and Eva’
      Randova as both the Jezibaba and the Foreign Princess in the same performance, was probably the best of all. Fleming’s voice is at times nowadays a bit frayed in the higher regions. I have seen
      3 productions of this work in Prague, 2 in Brno and
      one in Bratislava and every singer of Rusalka I have heard plus the one at the Volksoper, were successful in the role -- and most were totally unfamiliar
      Czech and Slovak singers. Fleming of all of them has been the most mannered and cautious vocally -her acting the most studied. I saw 3 Rusalkas this round at the Met and Fleming’s movements, though totally appropriate, were identical each evening (in contrast to a singer such as Rysanek who in multiple Tannhaeusers at the Met in 1977 was never quite the same drmatically or in movement). Perhaps it is this lack of spontaneous acting and singing which makes Fleming’s performances a little dreary.
      the new conductor, Paul Nadler, began the opera very slowly and the song to the Moon was truly a dirge -- perhaps Fleming’s choice as he was
      watching her carefully during that aria. I do not think that Rusalka is a role that needs a mannered approach as so much of Dvorak’s music clearly
      indicates the mood, the yearning, the distress of failure. Still one must be grateful to Fleming for championing this work at the Met which sparked
      4 revivals. One might pretty much echo what others penned above about this performance under Nadler.
      Zajick was annonced as indisposed but willing to sing anyway and she was just as good as in all her
      other performances. I worry a bit about Piotr Beczala -- when he pushes his voice as he did at times particularly in the 2nd act, some of the sheen is lost and he seems rather ordinary. His soft
      dulcet tones in the reflective 3rd act however indicated the beauty of the voice in a much better way. Emily Magee did not seem particularly special but one hardly ever hears the Foreign Princess gorgeously sung -- perhaps it is the vocal line of the role. Plus the Foreign Princess must make a big effect with a considerably limited amount of actual singing, hardly time to warm up and the curtain comes down ending the act. Plus she is not necessarily a sympathetic character -- hence I found it interesting when Eva Randova sang both the
      Jezibaba and the Foreign Princess the same evening in the original production. A musical dramatic approach perhaps similar to having one singer perform both Venus and Elisabeth though that is a much heftier assignment. I have seen Rusalka now 35 times and look forward to the 36th wherever it may be.

      I wonder if Fleming and Benackova who have been the only Rusalkas at the Met in history, will discuss
      the role and the Schenk production of Rusalka in Salzburg this spring when Fleming essays Arabella and Benackova portrays Adelaide, Arabells’s mother.

  • Krunoslav says:

    Bianca, Yannick was *absolutely nothing special* leading Opening Night, despite the automatic praise he garnered. Seemed to have no clear ideas about the score, and indulged Miss Fleming overmuch in virtually all of her music. Where is Jiri Belohavek?

    • Jungfer Marianne Leitmetzerin says:

      Belohlávek just finished conducting the first run of the new production of “Rusalka” at Wiener Staatsoper with Krassimira Stoyanova and Michael Schade.

  • Buster says:

    I would have loved to see this Rusalka:

  • WindyCityOperaman says:

    Happy Valentine’s Day!

    Born on this day in 1602 composer Francesco Cavalli

    Born on this day in 1899 conductor Lovro von Matacic

    Born on this day in 1927 actress Lois Maxwell

    Happy 87th birthday soprano Laurel Hurley

    Happy 55th birthday soprano Renée Fleming

  • Cicciabella says:

    De Nederlandse Opera and Het Nationale Ballet in Amsterdam merged into one organisation last year. This month they’re introducing their new house style and name; Nationale Opera & Ballet, acronym NOB. Just in case anyone was in any doubt that opera and ballet are elitist pursuits.

    The English version is Dutch National Opera & Ballet. The season will be announced officially on the 17th of February, but hundreds of subscription holders already know that it will include: Orfeo, Alcina, Tamerlano, Macbeth, Lohengrin, Bohéme, a staged version of the Gurrelieder, Benvenuto Cellini, Lulu and L’étoile by Chabrier.

    • grimoaldo says:

      What a great repertory!

      • Cicciabella says:

        Looks very good, although much will depend on the singers engaged. They’re also reprising the Simon McBurney Zauberflöte from last year, which was a hit with audiences and critics alike and a total sell-out, unlike its reincarnation at ENO.

  • Jungfer Marianne Leitmetzerin says:

    Elina Garanca just dropped out of her April Octavians at Wiener Staatsoper. Sophie Koch replaces her.

  • zinka says:

    Two beloved singers..Geraint Evans was born on Feb.16, 1922 and despite the English, he and the fabulous Regina make this scene so adorable.

  • zinka says:

    May I sincerely wish you all, dal mio cuore, a very HAPPY VALENTINE’S day….Agree or not…you are special people…help to make my life fuller…wish you were in charge of the Met. Charlie

  • WindyCityOperaman says:

    Born on this day in 1891 tenor Dino Borgioli

    Born on this day in 1896 soprano Hina Spani

    Born on this day in 1899 composer Georges Auric
    (Zsa Zsa’s vocals courtesy of Muriel Smith-the first Carmen Jones)

    Born on this day in 1926 baritone Raymond Wolansky

    Happy 77th birthday conductor Zoltan Pesko

    Happy 67th birthday composer John Adams

    Happy 63rd birthday soprano Kathryn Harries

  • Buster says:

    Lawrence Tibbett takes a bath: