Headshot of La Cieca

Cher Public

  • ML: Wise ass. That was not my point. 2:02 AM
  • Poison Ivy: I’ve never thought of DG as playing out in real time, the way Who’s Afraid of... 1:56 AM
  • La Cieca: Well, to be sure, Donna Anna cannot properly marry while she is mourning her father, which means... 1:16 AM
  • Poison Ivy: Heres a pretty long review of the ROH DVD: http://operajourna l.blogspot.co.uk/2 014/09/mozart-... 1:11 AM
  • Poison Ivy: Well the thing is you (and I) might find the sextet unbearable/hypocri tical/preachy, but the... 12:59 AM
  • La Cieca: A theater that is doing the Prague edition of Don Giovanni. 12:52 AM
  • ML: What kind of house omits Mi tradì? 12:44 AM
  • ML: If you heard his Gurnemanz, you would know he is ready for Sachs — a role that benefits from the... 12:37 AM
  • Bill: Mrs. JC – what is wrong with having a weakness for Mara Zampieri? – she is the last great... 12:26 AM
  • Avantialouie: The only way I can make sense of “Don Giovanni” at ALL is for Don Giovanni to be... 12:15 AM

In Bruges

They say that Boston, despite many cultural distinctions, ain’t no opera town, and for some decades—generations?—this has been true. But tides of change will break, even on the shores of the Hub. There is a baroque opera revival, spawned by the Boston Early Music Festival (a Monteverdi trilogy arriving next spring) and leading to hi-jinks at the region’s many schools, and to Boston Baroque, which gives Handel’s Agrippina in April. The somewhat traditional Boston Lyric Opera presents everything from Lizzie Borden (last month) to La Traviata (next month), though confining itself to three or four productions a year.

Then there’s a lively newcomer, Odyssey Opera, which debuted last year with Rienzi to celebrate the Wagner bicentennial. Last Saturday night, Odyssey gave Erich Wolfgang Korngold’s best-known opera, Die tote Stadt, in the New England Conservatory’s lovely, 800-seat Jordan Hall, and sold the place out. A very impressive cast sang and acted the concert with brief (mezzanined) contributions from the New World Chorale and the Boston Youth Chorus.   Read more »

Outskirts

Has anyone made Balzac’s “Sarrasine” into an opera? That’s the tale of a French artist in Rome falling in love with an opera diva—who turns out to be a castrato en travestie. (Women were forbidden the stage in Pope-land.) The story is simple, an anecdote, but the MacGuffin of gender is kept writhing in the air by the diva’s fear of her lover’s fury should he learn that the appealingly feminine creature he loves is, in fact, a man. Kind of like M. Butterfly. Roland Barthes wrote a charming structuralist analysis of the possible improbabilities of this tale, S/Z, and it has been given as a play, with two women, one melodramatic, one hilarious, and a drag performer (the great Bette Bourne), all playing the diva. At once.   Read more »

Great shakes

The little opera companies of New York are like chanterelles: Some years they sprout everywhere and you can savor the scent in the woodsy air; other seasons they’re hard to find and unsatisfying when you stumble on a patch. New York’s got lots of untapped vocal talent but you never know which companies will have their ears screwed on straight.   Read more »

Meade as Lucrezia

The curse of drink

Two operas both alike in dignity, set in dimly lit Renaissance towns ruled by seething, conspiratorial courts.

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dagger

Indian summer

“Who will dare dance with me the ancient Dagger-Dance of the Californians?”

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rimsky

The Night They Raided Rimsky’s

Opera-lovers who attend too much modern opera may find that it feels like duty.

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passenger

Notes on camp

Zofia Posmysz spent two years as a prisoner in Auschwitz—and she’s still alive and standing pretty tall, in New York for the Lincoln Center Festival God bless her.

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eliot

And Hanson is as Hanson did it, too!

Think of it as the anti-Puritani.

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paladin

Haydn in plain sight

The operas of Franz Josef Haydn are seldom presented in the great opera houses of the world, but then, they weren’t composed for the great opera houses of his own world.

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Gun-Brit_Barkmin

A dream deferred

Andris Nelsons led the Vienna Philharmonic in a performance of Salome that provided just the sort of thing one hopes for in a concert performance of an overflowingly rich operatic score.

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