Cher Public

And one for Handel!

“Davis noted that ‘it’s quite a coup to have Alice Coote starring in not one but two company premieres at Lyric next season – Cendrillon and Ariodante. I am tickled pink about this because she’s one of my favorite people’!” [Lyric Opera of Chicago’s 2018/19 Season]

  • Countessa Salome

    Good season!!! Be interested in seeing West Side Story!

  • swordsnsolvers

    Not a stunning season announcement by any means, but respectable.

    I’m glad we’re getting to see the Met’s timeworn Idomeneo as I always wanted to see that production live but never had a chance last year. Polenzani will kill it.

    Only four performances for Siegfried? Rheingold and Walkure I think had six apiece. No idea about the tenors.

    I don’t love Cendrillon but any chance to hear Davis conduct Massenet sounds good by me.

    Russell Thomas as Manrico, this has lots of potential. Same with Barton as Azucena which she has done before though I’ve never heard her.

    Bicket did a great job for this season’s Orphee. Don’t know much about the cast for Ariodante except Coote…. I am worried about Handel getting lost in a barn the size of the Lyric.

    I would far prefer Goerke over Stemme as Elektra, but I suppose Goerke has already done the role here and perhaps has to be at the Met in February for Ring duties anyway. Looking forward to Van den Heever as Chrysothemis.

    Shagimuratova as Violetta, yawn, if Puritani and Lucia were any clue she’ll hit the notes exactly without making me care the slightest bit. Zeljko Lu?i? as Germont could be promising.

    Also, this time the american musical they’re offering isn’t totally embarrassing. I’ll probably see everything except the Boheme and Traviata.

    • berkeleygirl

      The mere 4 performances of Siegfried may be in anticipation of underwhelming ticket sales. In November, I was surprised to receive a seat upgrade to the Lower Balcony. When I arrived for the performance, I was astonished to discover that the entire Upper Balcony had been closed off.

      • swordsnsolvers

        I would be irritated to get that “upgrade’ unless I was pretty far forward on the lower balcony. IMO the acoustics aren’t so great toward the back

        • Yige Li

          I was very unhappy about the “upgrade”. But since I went to Lyric a lot, staffs there know me, so after I begged for one minute, the house manager allowed me to sit at upper balcony. The acoustic was great. The only problem was that they used it for late seating…

    • Yige Li

      As I mentioned earlier, I don’t understand Freud’s obsession with Shagimuratova. Plus that production was bad (and as far as I know, they actually still have the previous production in their inventory…)

      • actfive

        I thought her Elvira was a vast improvement over her Lucia, especially in dramatic commitment.

        • Yige Li

          Maybe. I only remember Piotr’s elegant Edgardo from last season. And, unfortunately, just 2 weeks ago, I had a wonderful performance of La sonnambula featuring the luminous Rosa Feola’s Amina. In principle, I should not compare, but with such a recent experience… well…

          • actfive

            Rosa Feola is the real deal!

            • Yige Li

              Yes, she is! After LOC Rigoletto last year, I made the decision of having her on my list of singers that I will travel for. Since then, every time I saw her, I just loved her more.

    • Pelly’s Cendrillon has certainly been around. I saw it in Brussels in 2011.

    • Christian Ocier

      Fritz gave a fine performance of Das Lied von der Erde in the Albrecht recording, with Coote as the alto soloist. Not sure how he would weather Siegfried, but I thought he was an admirable Kaiser.

      • rhinestonecowgirl

        He was as good vocally as you can reasonably expect in the thankless role of Waldemar in the Dutch staged Gurrelieder, which I adore and which returns to Amsterdam in April with almost the same cast (Naglestad rather than Emily Magee) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sdb403AcD0A

    • So the Met’s Rings will be in early 2019? Future Met Wiki doesn’t have any further info about dates.

      • swordsnsolvers

        That’s sheer speculation on my part.

  • chicagoing

    I was irritated to discover just today that LOC sponsored a contest to guess their new season offerings as the deadline was midnight yesterday and I had some thoughts. I no longer feel badly. I would not have foretold a single one of these beside Siegfried.

  • berkeleygirl

    As a subscriber, I’m pretty thrilled. Since the arrival of Freud and Renee, there’s been a decided uptick in the quality of performance and repertoire. I’m a little surprised to see both Elektra and Trovatore back so soon, but the casts more than make it worth my while. Moreover, I much enjoyed McVicar’s Elektra. Stemme is probably the only singer alive who can match Goerke’s towering (in every way!) performance in this production. The icing on the cake, though, is Runnicles leading the show. Finally, Fabiano! I was starting to wonder when he’d ever make his debut.

    • chicagoing

      I am surprised to see Elektra and Trovatore back this soon and the same goes for Boheme and Traviata. It does not appear that most of these are new or even “new to Chicago” productions. We are now solidly in Anthony Freud planned territory. Not certain what this season is telling us about the future.

      • Yige Li

        Maybe, Freud’s season is: “Let’s try to do 4 operas, and let’s try to sell tickets for the other 4 operas.”

      • swordsnsolvers

        Of these, Boheme, Trovatore and Traviata are easy to understand as basic tentpole, “butts in seats” operas, but I’m not sure what’s the logic of running Elektra again so soon. Even if it proves popular, a one act show doesn’t yield nearly as much $ in concession sales.

        • Yige Li

          I’d guess it’s a vehicle for Nina Stemme.

          • Christian Ocier

            Can one imagine having Elektra as a career vehicle? What mere mortal can even say that? Birgit used Turandot as her calling card. And Nina appears to be doing the same with Isolde and Elektra. These sopranos are just nuts! (in a good way)

          • berkeleygirl

            Exactly what I was thinking…

    • Nina Stemme sang Elektra in concert in Paris just before Christmas (ideal programming for the season). It was a very successful evening.

      • Christian Ocier

        Very excited for her Elektra as well! I saw it at the Met and would be willing to see her a second time.

    • Christian Ocier

      I enjoy both performances by Goerke and Stemme, but I edge towards the latter as an interpreter due to the nuances she applies to her singing. When I hear Stemme, I hear so much involvement with the text and the music, as if she were transforming into the character onstage. Goerke is wonderful, with a voice that is gifted with a large dynamic range. But her assumptions of the great characters are rarely as moving for me.

      • Yige Li

        Having seen both, I wouldn’t mind to see any of them for the second time. But if I can choose, I would prefer to see Herlitzius whose Elektra I haven’t seen live.

  • chicagoing

    Danielle de Niese is a friend of the house but still surprised to see her coming over to sing Musetta.

    • Countessa Salome

      Has she done Musetta before?

      • Armerjacquino

        I think her upcoming Musettas at the ROH will be her first, although I may be wrong.

  • That Richard Jones production of Ariodante is wonderful and Coote was wonderful in it at the COC a couple of seasons ago.

    • Armerjacquino

      Is there puppetry in it? Weird question I know but a mate of mine did puppeteering on a Handel opera in Canada and I can’t remember which one it was.

      • fantasia2000

        Yes Armer, it’s the one with the puppets.

      • Is your friend the cute read-head with a beard? lol

        The puppet sequences are put in place of the dances at the end of each act.

        I found the puppetry quite evocative and moving. I remember having some issues with the logical consistency vis-a-vis the story, but they were a success.

    • fantasia2000

      I saw Richard Jones’ Ariodante when it premiered at Aix with starry cast. It was indeed wonderful … until the final scene, that I hated with a passion and definitely went against what Handel had in mind. I’m not sure if he kept that “epilogue”, but I bet he did.

      • I’m not always a fan of sad or grim endings set against jubilant music but I didn’t mind at all in this case. In fact, I loved the ending.

        In this staging, the jubilant music conveyed the oppressive community’s collective joy in contrast to the heroine’s troubled state. She is upset and those around her couldn’t care less as they insist she be happy. For me, there wasn’t dissonance in the staging and music.

        What I remember most is how Jones made a series of da capo arias into compelling drama.

  • CwbyLA

    Is Renee still involved in Lyric’s administration? Interestingly, she will be giving the commencement address at Northwestern: https://news.northwestern.edu/stories/2018/february/renee-fleming-commencement-address-northwestern/
    I am very impressed both by her and by Northwestern that hey chose an opera singer as the commencement speaker.