Cher Public

People may say I can’t write, but no one can ever say I didn’t write

FFJAn aging eccentric—who has for decades occupied a dubious place on the fringes of New York’s musical life—today saw a lifelong dream fulfilled.

  • pavel

    Congratulations to JJ on his debut in the Old Gray Lady!

  • Gualtier M

    Well don’t expect a warm welcome from Anthony Tommasini in case you bump into each other by the water cooler! However, this is a strong debut! Will there be more to come??? A regular gig??? Frankly they need some fresh talent in the music criticism department.

  • laddie

    Wonderful news! I hope they send you to Santa Fe some day!

  • Quanto Painy Fakor

    What a breath of fresh air in the NYT! Congratulations to JJ.

  • Donna Anna

    Well mazel tov! As usual, a thoughtful piece and a welcome addition. Long may JJ wave.

  • Wonderful. Bravo, JJ!!!

  • Lohenfal

    I generally don’t read the Times music reviews anymore, but this one was considerably above average. Puccini’s superiority to his verismo contemporaries was well stated. Let’s hope that this reviewer returns often.

  • Excellent.

  • kennedet

    Congratulations JJ. One of the pleasures of Parterre Box is reading your reviews. It’s good to know that more people are being exposed to your talent.

    Off-topic. I saw Florence Foster Jenkins last night. Streep worked her magic again by conveying a character that can make you have a laughing fit one moment and almost be brought to tears the next. Simon Helberg of the Big Bang Theory actually played the piano pieces and Hugh Grant was refreshing in a serious role. However, Streep, if I’m not mistaken (the credits rolled much too fast)sang all the parts herself and possesses a very nice vocal quality at the end of the movie. I fully understand why she is considered one of the best actresses in the world. I highly recommend viewing this movie.

    • Thanks for your mini-review. If I recall, as a teen, La Streep wanted to be an opera singer. And I do recall her doing some very good amateur singing in Postcards from the Edge.

      • mjmacmtenor

        Here is Streep singing in the 1982 “Alice at th Palace” -- a Joseph Papp production with music by Elizabeth Swados.

      • kennedet

        Thanks Kashnaia. I sat there amazed at how she imitated FFJ with all of those off-pitches, horrible intonation, etc. AT first I thought it was dubbed or someone else but the timbre was clearly Streep’s. I hope I’m not mistaken. It really took a lot of artistry to sound that horrible.

  • Ilka Saro

    Maazel tov, Ciecale!

  • Leonora di Vargas

    Congratulations JJ on your entry into the NY Times. Very interesting review on the appeal of Puccini. Very interesting to me especially because though I can’t stand the manipulation of Puccini and don’t actually like the stories of many of his operas. But the music is at the same time very effective and often quite irresistible.

    On You Tube there are some postings by Covent Garden in which Tony Pappano introduces different operas (just google “Antonio Pappano introduces” if you haven’t come across any of them). He describes the musical source of some of the ways that Puccini’s music appeals in several videos about different Puccini operas.

    • Leonora di Vargas

      Sorry there should be a comma instead of full stop at the end of paragraph 1.

    • Leonora di Vargas

      Sorry there should be a comma not a full stop at end of paragraph one.

  • Krunoslav

    Auspicious, but mightn’t the writer have termed Sean Panikkar “strapping” or “hardy” --in keeping with house style?

    • Camille

      Now, now, dearie—-

      —your eagle eye must have not noted the house word “dusky” in description of Srta. Cecilia Violetta López’s voice. One hallowed house word at a turn, as there is plenty more time for the belovèd “strapping” and “husky”!

      Just now, I am listening to a late nineties Eugene Onegin with Chernov, Gorchakova, Farina, et al, conducted by the man who got away—-Pappano. O Bozhe moy--he may not be Russisch, but he is good.

      • Camille

        Come to think of it, Mr Thomas is a sure thing for “burnished” and “husky”.

  • gustave of montreal

    What an insult to perform that mediocre score of LE VILLI.

    • Camille

      It’s positively VILE!

    • tiger1

      Insult to whom?

  • rogwood

    Congratulations, well deserved!

  • luvtennis1

    Congratulations!!!!!!!! I have been reading JJ for nearly 20 years. I have always been impressed by the quality of the argument and the prose in virtually everything JJ has written. Good to see that the Times agrees with me!

    Long overdue in my opinion!

  • grimoaldo

    “the “Lescaut” duet, sung with throbbing power by the soprano Melody Moore and the tenor Russell Thomas….Talise Trevigne and Sean Panikkar were the full-voiced leading pair, both capable of sudden ravishing pianissimo phrases”

    And congrats to most excellent tenors Thomas and Panikar!

  • Alex Baker

    Wow! Congratulations!

  • erricco

    Such a pleasure to spot J.J.’s byline with that interesting review from Bard in today’s NYT !