Fifty years after the U.S. premiere of Leos Janácek’s The Makropulos Case at the San Francisco Opera, the piece made a successful return to the same building this month. Featuring a daring performance by leading soprano Nadja Michael and sung in the original Czech, Janácek’s disconcerting commentary on youth and immortality received a full-throated performance. Read more »
I’ve found myself at a number of Carmen productions over the last 18 months (a Jonas Kaufmann-less Saturday matinee at the Met last spring, a Wolf Trap young artist production, and, most recently, a minimal chorus-less outing in Atlantic City which turned on an affair between Carmen and Micaela), and besides putting me over the annual advisable quota for any particular warhorse, it has given me some time to ponder the current state of the Carmen enterprise. Read more »
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.
“In a winter rich with splashy debuts, Friday’s performance of Le Comte Ory introduced a 27-year-old South African charmer who may well be the Met’s next big star. She’s Pretty Yende, and that first name fits her to a tee, what with her willowy figure, megawatt smile and—most of all—ravishing light soprano.” [New York Post]
Avgust Amonov will make his Met debut in the title role of tomorrow evening’s performance of Verdi’s Otello, replacing Johan Botha, who is ill.
La Cieca hears that soprano Latonia Moore will make her Metropolitan Opera debut this Saturday afternoon.
Mariella Devia will augment her already vast bel canto repertoire next year with the role of roles: Bellini’s Norma.
The Monday, 12th December, Weill Hall recital debut of Signora Chiara Taigi, a strikingly good looking Italian soprano, who had made her American operatic debut this past March, starring as Selika in the OONY production of Meyerbeer’s long-neglected L’Africaine, was something Your Own Camille had looked forward to with a high hopes and a faintly wondering glee, for several months now.
Says the Met press office: “Roberto De Biasio will make his Met debut as Gabriele Adorno in the Thursday, January 20 opening performance of Simon Boccanegra, replacing Ramón Vargas, who is ill. Mr. Vargas is scheduled to sing the remainder of the performances.”
No programs for last night’s Fanciulla, just someone had worked overtime on the copier to give us a cast list and plot summary. If no delivery for the glossy, fully 3k people there, just slight slip and slide on the Plaza enough to keep me gripping the alpenstock. (A weapon of Individual Destruction, permitted by the Met, if not airlines outside of Chehnya.)
“The decades-overdue debut of Sir Simon Rattle at the Met Friday night demonstrated brilliantly just what we’ve been missing: His conducting of Pelléas et Mélisande is the musical pinnacle of the season.” [New York Post]