Putting in a little face time (and what faces!) at Charles Castronovo‘s cabaret at 54 Below last night were barihunk trifecta Erwin Schrott, Dmitri Hvorostovsky and Ildar Abdrazakov. Note the leather jeans. The tenor repeats his show tomorrow night following that evening’s Met performance of Don Ottavio. (Photo: Charles Martin)
Happy birthday to baritone Zachary Gordin, cover boy for this year’s Barihunk Wall Calendar.
Monteverdi’s L’incoronazione di Poppea (The Coronation of Poppea) is opera on the grand scale with mellifluous arias and breathtaking duets that tell a tale of ancient Roman political machinations, adultery, and murder in which there is no true protagonist. This stunningly expressive music is performed by an all-star cast. Soprano Miah Persson, praised by The New York Times for her “sumptuous sound and elegant lyricism,” is joined by singers who have all won worldwide critical acclaim for their mastery of this beautiful repertoire. The Guardian wrote that “there are few performers better-versed in the music of Claudio Monteverdi than Rinaldo Alessandrini and the ensemble he founded 30 years ago, Concerto Italiano.” Alessandrini and company anchor a performance that promises to be one of the season’s most thrilling nights of opera.
Karol Szymanowski’s 1926 King Roger was the sleeper hit of SFO’s season, not so much for its weird, mystical theme and feeble libretto but because the music is powerfully effective and Evan Rogister handled the shimmering, richly expressionistic orchestral writing with consummate skill. The choral writing is ravishing, especially the ecclesiastical Russian-sounding opening movement that emerges from the stark sounds of bells and gongs. Read more »
Prepare to swoon, cher public, as the Bayerische Staatsopera presents yet another of their hunk-o-rama webcasts, Eugene Onegin, starring Simon Keenlyside and Pavol Breslik.
It was indeed a curious sensation making a late morning trek to East 59th Street, a block devoted to showro0ms for bizarre upscale furniture and lighting fixtures, and then to enter a boutique cinema specializing in Hindi films (the big coming attraction right now is Desi Boyz) — and all this before sitting down in an auditiorium half- full of retirees to see a live performance of Don Giovanni from La Scala. That it worked as a Mozart experience I think can be chalked up to two factors: Robert Carsen‘s production and the constantly improving (if still imperfect) HD technology.
Randal Turner, pictured above, is but one of 33 barihunks featured in—who ever would have guessed?— “the first Barihunks calendar,” just in time for holiday giving and receiving. All proceeds from the calendar, available at the Barihunks site, will be donated to young artist programs. (Photo by Sarah Wells)
Good news, barihunk lovers! According to a press release from the Met, Mariusz Kwiecien will return to the stage for the title role of Don Giovanni on October 25, in time for the HD telecast October 29 as well as remaining scheduled performances through November 11.
Peter Mattei will sing the opening night of the Met’s new Don Giovanni Thursday, replacing the injured Mariusz Kwiecien. Subbing for Mattei as Figaro in Il barbiere di Siviglia tomorrow and Friday nights will be Rodion Pogossov.
Barihunk Mariusz Kwiecien injured his handsome back during today’s dress rehearsal of Don Giovanni at the Met and was taken to the hospital, tweets Dan Wakin. As La Cieca writes this, Kwiecien’s cover Dwayne Croft is at the Met rehearsing the opera’s first act swordfight.
Winners of the seventh annual F. Paul Driscoll Awards for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Excellence, or, as they are colloquially known, the Opera News Awards, have been announced. Accepting the coveted “Effies” on Sunday, April 29 at The Plaza in New York City will be sopranos Karita Mattila and Anja Silja, baritones Dmitri Hvorostovsky and Peter Mattei, and director Peter Sellars. (Zany photo of Sellars by Alex Ross.)