Headshot of La Cieca

Cher Public

  • rompicolleone: OMG! I was playing in the orchestra for these performances. Thanks for reminding me of them! 9:08 PM
  • armerjacquino: Thanks! Should have mentioned that Kaufmann came badly to grief trying to be too clever at the... 8:10 PM
  • armerjacquino: Oh dear. I’ve not seen the man for twenty years but that is enough to make me remake... 8:08 PM
  • steveac10: “Valente was better than Cotrubas?” Yes. Valente had a spotty Met career, but when she... 8:06 PM
  • manou: Oh all right then – (yes it is that Philip Collins), and seeing as he is a Cambridge friend of... 7:39 PM
  • armerjacquino: Thanks! Although ‘review̵ 7; is pushing it. 7:31 PM
  • armerjacquino: Good God- I don’t have a Times subscription so can’t read the piece, but if... 7:30 PM
  • armerjacquino: Valente was better than Cotrubas? 7:28 PM
  • bluecabochon: Check the HD schedule for showings in the US, Evenhanded – if you live stateside –... 7:23 PM
  • Baltsamic Vinaigrette: ‘bone’ , natch… 7:18 PM

If it quacks like a Lebrecht

It’s Logic 101, really: “Peter Gelb says opera in the United States is having trouble finding an audience. A single performance at the Mariinsky Opera last week sold out. Therefore, Peter Gelb is a liar.”

Gee, our old Chagalls hang great

It’s time to call out the canard again, a whole row of them in fact: a series of “What’s wrong with the Metropolitan Opera?” editorials by “writer, speaker, consultant… compelling teacher…. [and] expert on everything Italian, the person other so-called Italy experts turn to for definitive information,” Fred Plotkin. Read more »

Enough with the whirling!

It’s time for lazy stage directors and lazy sopranos to find some other gesture besides the chain of clumsy pique turns (AKA “whirling”) that is the cliché go-to opera shorthand for “joy.” Nobody but drag queens actually twirl in real life, and they’re doing it ironically. Sopranos, take note that the waltz music the orchestra is playing doesn’t really exist in your character’s reality, so there’s no need to dance all the time, even if the director can’t come up with something interesting for you do do. And it looks just plain silly for a big middle-aged woman to go pirouetting around like some eight-year-old fairy princess. Stop whirling! Read more »


Bridge over troubled writer

Ineffable Igor Toronyi-Lalic (pictured, right) either spouts a novel canard or perhaps just froths incoherently. La Cieca will let you be the judge.

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Getting our canards in a row

“Masterpieces are not there to subvert; they are there to explore.”

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Le droit du canard

Oh, we’ve a veritable stew of canards to feast upon this week, cher public, courtesy of our old friend Rupert Christiansen.

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Not canard, more loon

“More telephone ring tones come from Bizet’s Carmen that any other opera.”

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The Life and Death of Colonel Canard

La Cieca can’t even

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The tutti frutti canard

“An opera production should look the way the music sounds.” – Lady Valerie Solti

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Indeed a great chance to be a canard

“Verdi revered Shakespeare and would turn over in his grave.”

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