Richard Lynn is a New York City based opera lover who writes at parterre box under the name Dawn Fatale. His love of opera started at a very young age when he used to listen to the Met broadcasts and obsessively read back issues of Opera News in lieu of socializing at family gatherings. In college, he majored in Chemistry while taking as many music and theater courses as possible. He worked at the Music Library to get access to the opera recordings that were off limits to undergraduates. Since the early 1990s he has been writing about opera at parterre box and other publications and is particularly interested the evolution of staging and performance practices.
Sometimes, as with last week’s upending election, history seems to jump to an entirely different, unimagined timeline. The individuals who cause these disruptive changes have been a fascination for Philip Glass, whose first three operas form the so-called “Portrait Trilogy” about visionaries who transformed their respective eras. Read more »
At the election-eve Jenufa at the Met, Trumpism made an unexpected, if timely appearance. Before the show, a patron was holding court in the Lounge, bemoaning how Peter Gelb had ruined Aida by removing the elephants from the Triumphal Scene. Read more »
The redevelopment that took place at Lincoln Center during Reynold Levy’s tenure as president of Lincoln Center represents a considerable accomplishment. One can can question decisions, priorities and outcomes (devoting precious plaza real estate to a very good, but very expensive restaurant; the awkward, treacherous path from the Met through a Brian de Palma-inspired tunnel to the subway), but Levy deserves recognition for the combination of fundraising savvy, stubbornness, and leadership he displayed in getting this done. Surely, there’s an interesting saga to told. Unfortunately, Levy’s ponderously titled memoir They Told Me Not to Take that Job: Tumult, Betrayal, Heroics, and the Transformation of Lincoln Center doesn’t tell it. Read more »
James Levine turns 72 this year. Even though his health has improved considerably in the past year and he may continue to conduct for a decade or more, it seems inevitable that he will step down as the Met’s Music Director sometime in the next few years to assume the role of Conductor Laureate.
For my 2014 retrospective, I’ve chosen two shows from the past year that are returning in 2015 and that really shouldn’t be missed by NY-based-and-visiting parterriani.
This past week of contract negotiations at the Metropolitan Opera has been notable for the absence of any new PowerPoint presentations or fustian proclamations.
In response to repeated urging by La Cieca, Our Own Dawn Fatale has contributed a “to do” list for the benefit of Met management, assuming the company makes it out of this summer alive.
For those of you still queasy after Mary Zimmerman’s sophomoric snarknado attack on Bellini’s La Sonnambula, the new DVD of the Stuttgart Opera production should provide a bracing restorative.