Cher Public

Once upon a Thames

“Houston Grand Opera’s 2014–15 season, the company’s 60th anniversary season, includes the world premiere of A Christmas Carol by Iain Bell… from award-winning Dickens authority Simon Callow… the American premieres of Sir Nicholas Hytner’s The Magic Flute and Lee Blakeley’s Sweeney Todd…. John Cox’s Otello… and Michael Grandage’s hit staging of Madame Butterfly…. Iain Paterson’s first staged portrayal of Wotan…. Likewise Susan Bullock and Nicholas Phan—leading exponents of Wagner and Britten respectively—join Nathan Gunn in turning their talents to gallows humor with role debuts in Sweeney Todd…” [HGO]

  • “Not since Joan Cross’s legendary interpretation of Joanne in Company has a Sondheim musical enjoyed such an elegant sufficiency of Britten exponents.”

    • Often admonished

      “Not since Joan Cross’s legendary interpretation of Joanne in Company has a Sondheim musical enjoyed such an elegant sufficiency of Britten exponents.”

      It’s time to find another shtick, honey.

  • manou

    So glad we are able to lend some class to Texas.

    • peter


  • Clita del Toro

    OT: Watching Rosenkavalier for Salzburg. I really liked Stoyanova this time.

  • DeepSouthSenior

    This past June, I checked out the HGO website when I was in Houston as an Elder Commissioner to our church’s General Assembly. So, for two months I’ve had my sights on Die Walkure next April and May. Given the rave reviews at Parterre of Christine Goerke in “Frau” last season, I’m eager to see her as Brunnhilde. The HGO’s Press Release ramps up the excitement: : “Christine Goerke, giving her hotly anticipated first staged performances in the U.S. as

    It’s a seven- to eight-hour drive from our home to downtown Houston. At least we won’t have to be on I-10 from Houston to San Antonio, which (by way of understatement) is the “Wild, Wild West” of interstate travel. Brave it, and you’ll know what I mean.

    Individual tickets go on sale by phone Sunday, August 24, and online Monday the 25th.

    • DonCarloFanatic

      Is the cast going to be different when Houston does the full cycle a year or two later? Not that seeing an extra Walkure ever did anyone any harm.

      • Don_Dano

        I don’t believe that Houston plans to do a full cycle. I think the plan is to do one Ring opera per year for four years.

        I am not completely sure, but I have always had the impression the Christine Goerke will be singing all three Brunnhildes.

        • Don_Dano

          Although considering Houston’s Das Rheingold sold at 103% of capacity, maybe they should reconsider the decision not to do a traditional one week Ring Cycle.

    • BaronScarpia

      You can see/hear Christine Goerke’s Walkure Brunnhilde in Toronto with the Canadian Opera January/February 2015.

      • Don_Dano

        And what is the typical January/February temperature in Toronto?

        • DonCarloFanatic

          It’s not the temperature. It’s the snow. Lots and lots of snow.

          • il_guarany

            I’ve been living in Toronto since 2004, and, excepting the BC coast, this region has the mildest winters in all of Canada (I realize that’s not really saying much). Still -- let’s say the “average” (meaning normal-ish and acceptable) daytime temp in January would be around -10C (around 18F, maybe?). Snow is erratic and difficult to predict buy by and large downtown Toronto is spared most of snow’s fury, and there was one winter in the past 5 years when we hardly got any snow at all. Come on up, it’ll be great fun.

      • Whilst here, you can also catch the Tcherniakov Don Giovanni.

  • la vociaccia

    In fairness, the Christmas Carol is a one-man show starring an American.

    …who is a Britten specialist

  • Clita del Toro

    Salzburg Rosenkavalier. I really liked Stoyanova as I said. Given that she is not the prettiest or most charming actress, she did really very well Erdmann was, well…..
    Her glassy singing aside, she looks like a tall, skinny Dr. Joyce Brothers with Bugs Bunny teeth. Groissböck was excellent (and very cute). Koch was good (but not fab) and looked good. They all acted very well, and I do like the production and direction.

    • Chanterelle

      Of the principals I liked Stoyanova and Groissböck best. This Ochs isn’t totally deluded to think himself capable of pleasing a young girl, and this Marschallin is, at last, a mature women who has more on the line as she sees her young lover turn to a girl his age. And she sounded wonderful. The scene just before the final trio was very well directed--personenregie is not dead! Handsome sets and costumes, too.

  • And?????

  • Hippolyte

    I heard Nicholas Phan in last weekend’s live broadcast of Bernstein’s Candide from Tanglewood (well, the first act anyway). I thought he was efficient but charmless and the voice lacked beauty--I really missed Paul Groves who was so lovely in the New Philharmonic version a while back. I would be curious to hear the rest of the broadcast but all in all what I heard wasn’t so impressive, although von Stade sounded like she might make something of the Old Lady (the only number of hers I got was “I am easily assimilated”).

  • Harold

    And if you have to miss the HGO season, you can see it the following year in Chicago.

  • David

    Must be a slow news day. Or La Cieca’s heard a ‘commonwealth accent’ again: