Cher Public

  • johns33: We attended performance today at the met. To me, The aix en.provence set design did not work well. The voices sounded lost in the... 5:03 PM
  • Lady Abbado: Norma with Cerquetti and Corelli, Rome 1958: httpv://www.youtub e.com/watch?v=t-GN MbNwOII 4:32 PM
  • phoenix: no intention here of trying to upstage Marty Sohl or Nina Stemme, but in the name of esoterica, I must alert all that... 12:24 PM
  • jackoh: Well, there at least they could die in a real desert. 12:05 PM
  • phoenix: simple – when they get kicked out of that abysmal New Orleans, put ’em on a wagon train going west on the southern... 11:42 AM
  • gustave of montreal: In 1945 Hitler and his wife, Eva, committed suicide in Berlin. Is he still burning in purgatory ? 11:30 AM
  • jackoh: How could we abandon the place where Manon died? 11:23 AM
  • operablogger: Doesn’t matter — I don’t think Jefferson saved the receipt. 10:48 AM

Site unseen

giovanna amazonGiuseppe Verdi was so unhappy with the first production of his Giovanna d’Arco at La Scala in 1845 that he swore an oath to himself that he would never entrust that theatre with a prima again. His other vow was to never speak with the impresario Bartolomeo Merelli after he oversaw what Verdi considered a substandard mounting and then had the audacity to sell the rights of the score out from under him to Ricordi. La Scala waited twenty-four years, until the Italian revision of his La Forza del Destino, before he finally relented.
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To live and die (with honor) in L.A.

ButterflyLos Angeles first saw Giacomo Puccini’s Madama Butterfly presented at the Mason Opera House downtown in 1908 by the English Grand Opera Company. Rumors that LA Opera Artistic Director Placido Domingo portrayed Cio-Cio San’s little boy in that production remain unsubstantiated.  Read more »

La lune est encore sur la mer

Esa-Pekka Salonen made his American conducting debut with the LA Philharmonic in 1984 at the tender age of 26. Back when LA Opera was still finding its sea legs, the orchestra wasn’t our strongest suit so whenever something really challenging was programmed they would hire the LA Phil. So the glorious David Hockney designed Tristan und Isolde, which was my first, in 1987 with Jeanine Altmeyer, Florence Quivar and Martti Talvela had Zubin Mehta and the Philharmonic spinning gold in the pit. The next year came Berg’s Wozzeck with Simon Rattle and his then-wife Elise Ross as Marie with a very abstract production and LA audiences stayed away in droves.  Read more »

Flute 4

Out there in the dark

The revival of Mozart’s The Magic Flute at the Music Center downtown, last seen at LA Opera in 2013, is reason for jubilation for everyone except perhaps the singers engaged.

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magic amazon

Every little thing she does is magic

Ms. Guy goes into detail about what made Sills a “magic” performer, recounting reactions of people across an extraordinarily broad socio-economic spectrum who discovered their love of opera and singing through her.

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Sutherland amazon

Everytime we say goodbye

Gather around while I play Ghost of New Year’s Eve past!

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Aida amazon

Ardori inospiti

The most recent Egyptian voluptuary of 2006 by our friend Franco has now been replaced by the most singularly spartan production of Verdi’s masterpiece I think I’ve ever seen.

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Turandot_Dessi

Gli enigmi sono due

Giacomo Puccini’s final opus interruptus is and shall always remain my favorite opera. The reasons for this preference are so varied and numerous that if they were printed and bound the volume would most assuredly require its own stand.  

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Norma 1

The rite stuff

Remember that time you went to the opera and the entire evening was perfection?

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moby

Consider the subtleness of the sea

Hopefully the assignment of Herman Melville’s endless whaling opus Moby-Dick as compulsory reading for High School students is a thing of the past.

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