The legendary and beloved Italian tenor died earlier today. He was 90. Read more »
UPDATE: The Met has responded to the presentation from Local 802 et. al.
PREVIOUSLY: La Cieca has come into possession of an interesting presentation, with fonts and everything, from Local 802, American Federation of Musicians, and the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, outlining their solution for the current financial crisis at the Metropolitan Opera. You may not be surprised to learn that their cost-saving stratagems include slashing the company’s budget for new productions, media and administrative costs, while increasing pay to the orchestra. Read more »
In his memoirs Richard Strauss had the foresight to put down what he called his “10 Golden Rules for Young Conductors.” It’s a fairly comprehensive list in spite of being so short with pithy comments like, “Never look encouragingly at the brass.” Number three has always been the one that’s fascinated me most: “Conduct Salome and Elektra as if they were by Mendelssohn: Fairy music.” Seriously, how often has that happened? The average performance of Strauss’ Elektra reaches a decibel level akin to the landing deck of a fully functional aircraft carrier. I’ve even heard rumors that the John Culshaw produced ‘sonic-stage’ spectacular Decca recording with Georg Solti conducting and Birgit Nilsson’s all-out assault on the title role can be heard from space. Read more »
Christine Goerke is the Prima Donna in this scene from Francesca Zambello‘s Glimmerglass production of Ariadne auf Upstate New York, and Did I Mention That the Komponist is a Dyke?
Your conduit to the spirit world, La Cieca, isn’t feeling quite as clairvoyante as usual today, cher public, so she’s going to ask your help in predicting what will happen in the course of the Met’s current labor negotiations.
“The labor strife at the Metropolitan Opera took on a new urgency Wednesday, when the company’s general manager, Peter Gelb, sent its orchestra, chorus, stagehands and other workers letters warning them to prepare for a lockout if no contract deal is reached by next week.”
“Renee Fleming appears to be having as much fun as the audience with her send-up of a fragile opera diva.” [Troy Record]
Bel Canto at Caramoor is something that I’ve always wanted to attend but never have because … well because frankly I’m just too lazy during the summers, and I’m also a big baby about outdoor performances.
Two operas both alike in dignity, set in dimly lit Renaissance towns ruled by seething, conspiratorial courts.