Our Own JJ (not pictured) offers his recommendations for 10 opera and classical music events worth hearing this spring. [New York Observer]
Is that a photo of Meryl Streep, Al Bundy and the other Al?
Of the list in the article, I most want to hear, not see, live the Sonnambula as the principals are extraordinary, from all accounts. Perhaps if Geld liked the public a bit more -after so many boos to some productions in the last ten years- he would do them the favor of intoducing more partial view seats or, better, no view seats (but perfect hearing) :).
By all means sit in the Family Circle (preferably in the rear). The seats are miles away from the stage, part of the stage is obstructed and the acoustics are the best in the house. And you can’t beat those prices.
I totally agree with you Kashania. My favorite place is the standing place in the “nose bleed section”. I often just sit down on the floor and listen….the sound is glorious!
I would also recommend to anyone available the WAR REQUIEM on April 30 with Robert Spano + Atlanta Symph
-ony. I’ve heard Spano conduct Britten before and he’s really wonderful and attentive.
I have heard him conduct both Berlioz and Respighi before, and he was DITTO.
You should come Camille! April 30 at Carnegie Hall
Wow. By happenstance, I am flying back up on that date, but won’t arrive @ LGA until well after the concert starts. Darn it. Timing is all.
Oh well, you all will tell me about it.
Vo-Cha-Cha, how did you like Camarena? I was really astonished as I had no idea who this guy was and was not expecting anything.
I really love Camarena, Camille. I’m so picky about tenors and he truly has what I desire in a tenor sound: beautiful natural emission (mirabile dictu, no manufactured sound!!) and colors colors everywhere. I admire the technique of Florez and Brownlee (to name a couple more familiar tenori di grazii), but Camarena’s timbre and way of singing has this immediate connection to the words and their natural colors; it’s a beautiful feeling when someone is both singing and speaking to you.
I rather like the Zimmerman production. It has a Twilight Zone dramatic quality and a handsome set -- a loft out of one’s urban dreams. The only thing I did not like- writing ‘aria’ on the blackboard -- was scuttled after opening night. The actual sleepwalk is the most effective I ever saw. Zimmerman’s take foretells Christof Loy’s eerily gripping ‘recording studio’ “Die Frau ohne Schatten” at Salzburg.
“ARIA” was still around at least by the time of the HD broadcast. I didn’t mind that touch so much, and I’m also in the production’s tiny Parterre fan club. Maybe it’s just that by the time I saw it on DVD — a combination of brutal reviews and the opera’s not being a favorite kept me away for a couple years — my expectations were low, and it exceeded them. I thought Zimmerman’s direction had some charm and ingenuity, and the original cast seemed inspired to give sharp performances for her, not just JDF and Dessay but the lower-wattage players. This is not a show I’d go to war over, but I would put it somewhere in the middle of the new productions of the Gelb years. I could not imagine sitting through Don Giovanni, Faust, any installment of the Ring, or that vile production of Le comte Ory again unless I just had to see some singer or singers. It’s been demonstrated to me that they are dreary experiences even when the cast includes performers I love as much as anyone alive and working in opera.
Porgy, I’m almost positive I saw “Elvino,” not “Aria” in the HD. But anyway, count me in too as liking the production.
Ah, yes. I was coming here to correct myself, having caught up on the discussion of the same subject in the Sonnambula-dedicated thread.
Hosokawa Toshio is certainly a terrific composer. But “The Raven” is only about 45 minutes long. Great for a lunch-time concert, I suppose. Otherwise, I would hope they would supplement it with something else.
Joyce and Juan Diego in Cenerentola. There’s nothing I want to see more.
They’re both quite wonderful in that production with the rats. (No, the other one.)
What a fun clip! Costumes, wigs and props are also delightful, but the performers are quite dwarfed by that huge set and the ugly kitchen tiles seem at variance with everything else that is going on, but I have only seen this clip, fwiw.
The clip is representative. This production by Joan Font is a lot of fun to watch, more so than the Met’s current one, in my opinion. The rats, besides moving the furniture around, serve as the heroine’s mute friends, listening to her when no one else does. DiDonato reaches over and scratches one behind the ears at one point. Sometimes they’re also watching a duet, their heads moving back and forth during rapid-fire exchanges as if it’s a game of ping-pong. It’s all very cute, in the good way. The only strike against this DVD is the way the orchestra under Summers is recorded — it occasionally sounds like a concerto for cymbals and orchestra.
The rats made me think of that old comic “Spy vs. Spy” from Mad Magazine!
Not forgetting the original Cinderella rodents
I saw the Platee production, which was very imaginative. The singing is the typical Baroque style (white and very little vibrato). Indeed Kermes stole the show with who knows how many E-flats.
I have been randomly checking the Carnegie Hall website for months for any newly available tickets to Iestyn Davies’ concert next month. After reading this article by JJ, I went there again today and lo, there was one available seat that must have been returned! Thanks for the nudge -- it paid off!
Wasn’t Maria Agresta supposed to sing Mimi at some point? She’s my fave new soprano. Just listened to GIovanna D’Arco again and she’s terrific.
Maria Agresta sings Mimi at the Paris Opera this very week.
I have her singing Oberto, Gemma di Vergy, I Masnadieri and Giovanna and she’s fabulous in all of them.
After a very stimulating conversation on parterre box regarding Parsifal, my wife and I plan to spend the Lent season devouring the Jonas Kaufmann DVD. Thanks Cieca.
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