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.”
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 »
Mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato is first among equals in a spectacular cast when she sings the title role of Ariodante in this season’s installment of Carnegie Hall’s critically acclaimed cycle of Handel’s operas in concert. A brilliantly melodic work, the opera features outstanding arias for each of the principal singers, including Ariodante’s melancholy “Scherza infida” and show-stopping “Doppo note.” Harry Bicket and The English Concert bring authentic Handelian brilliance to this marvelous opera. (Photo: Simon Pauly) Get tickets. Read more »
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 »
“Masterpieces are not there to subvert; they are there to explore.”
Oh, we’ve a veritable stew of canards to feast upon this week, cher public, courtesy of our old friend Rupert Christiansen.
“More telephone ring tones come from Bizet’s Carmen that any other opera.”
“An opera production should look the way the music sounds.” — Lady Valerie Solti