Tenors Bryan Hymel (pictured) and Joseph Calleja redeem otherwise routine Puccini revivals at the Met, says Our Own JJ in the New York Observer. (Photo: Ken Howard/Metropolitan Opera)
What we have here is the grandest opera never heard—in spite of the fact that Giacomo Meyerbeer’s Robert le Diable made, arguably, the most sensational debut of any in the history of the Paris Opéra. The massive work was hailed by nearly every composer of its day as a masterpiece, save a few bitter pill takers—Herrs Wagner and Mendelssohn I’m looking at you—and then transcribed into concert pieces by many of them.
Staging innovations for that first production included the first use in Paris of the English theatrical trap door. It even started trends in dance that live on to this day with the invention of the ur-tutu and the introduction of the “ballet blanc” genre with the ladies of the corps all in white. Being immortalized by Degas twice in paint and having the singular distinction of being the only 19th Century opera to have a rose named after it hardly even scratches the veneer of how wildly popular Robert was in its heyday. Read more »
La Cieca has been wining, dining and otherwise wooing her Met connection (pictured above) and he (or is it she?) has come across with some tidbits about upcoming seasons at Casa Gelb.
One startling upset catches the eye among the many winners (if that is the word) of the 2013 Parterre Box Awards.
Congratulations to Bryan Hymel (right), winner of the 2013 Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement in Opera “for his performances in Les Troyens, Robert Le Diable and Rusalka at the Royal Opera House.”
Tenor Bryan Hymel has been named the recipient of the eighth annual Beverly Sills Artist Award for young singers at the Metropolitan Opera.
American tenor Bryan Hymel will make his Met debut, singing the role on December 26, December 29 matinee, January 1, and January 5 matinee (the date of the global HD transmission).