Headshot of La Cieca

Cher Public

  • pavel: I love her in this video! I just can’t stop thinking, however, how much she looks like a... 6:49 PM
  • MontyNostry: I saw Max Jota in a competition a few years ago (2011) and I thought he was genuinely talented,... 6:41 PM
  • Poison Ivy: Ok, I’ve done some digging on what’s available for Monastyrska and have found some... 6:37 PM
  • antikitschychick: Lmaooooooo this is too funny. I really like her but Verdi might be rolling around in his... 6:35 PM
  • zinka: httpv://www.youtub e.com/watch?v=kngG tt-pQM4 To all my very scary buddies here…I wish you a... 6:30 PM
  • antikitschychick: Yeah I think she may have been tired last night…or because it’s just a revival... 6:28 PM
  • actfive: That is some pretty fabulous singing, esp Abigaille and Lady M. 5:49 PM
  • almavivante: It pains me to ask what may be a very dumb question, but: Do people REALLY buy these Xmas albums... 5:28 PM
  • pirelli: It’s interesting listening to the clips of Kelli/Renee and Kurt/Renee in particular. In both... 5:24 PM
  • uwsinnyc: I have to say she sounded *marginally* better when she did them a couple years ago. Or may be it... 5:18 PM

A dude? Am I a dude? Madame Flora, a dude?

It’s just not true that Gian Carlo Menotti composed The Medium as an opera only because he couldn’t get Joan Crawford to do it when his libretto was originally a screenplay. But you can see how these rumors get started. I know what I’m talking about here, because I started that one myself.   Read more »

L’infelice Aragonese

Camille Saint-Saëns was such a brilliant, facile musician that pals like Wagner and Liszt felt a distinct schadenfreude when he suffered composer’s block. Still, in a career of some eighty years’ length, he completed a dozen operas (not to mention symphonies and concertos and, as Leon Botstein explained and demonstrated at Bard, the world’s first full-length film score)—but you are unlikely to have heard more than one of the operas.  Read more »

Thirds and music

Richard Wagner told Cosima he first got the idea of composing an opera about Tristan and Isolde while he was conducting Bellini’s I Capuleti e i Montecchi starring his muse, Wilhelmine Schröder-Devrient, in the trouser role of Romeo.

Wagner said lots of stuff. Whether this bit was true or not, it was Wagner’s high opinion of Bellini (especially Norma, of course) that kept the man in the repertory outside of Italy through the dark years of verismo and Gesamtkünstwerk. Happily, the two men never met; Wagner would have tried to borrow money and you know how that would have turned out.  Read more »