Cher Public

Bells are ringing

With the world’s focus on France this week (and if it isn’t, it should be!), it seems appropriate to offer you a staple of the French repertoire: Lakmé, the oriental fantasia by Léo Delibes.  This 1980 performance from Dallas stars Ruth Welting, Alfredo Kraus, and Paul Plishka, conducted by Nicola Rescigno.  Read more »

Hold your peace

Given the events currently playing out on the world stage and the fact that this week marks holidays for Christians, Jews, and Muslims, it seems like a good time for something topical, introspective, and non-liturgical: Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem with Anna Netrebko, Ian Bostrdge, and Thomas Hampson in an incredibly moving performance from the 2013 Salzburger Festspiele.  Read more »

Wallflower at the orgy

I’ve reached one of my goals for 2017: with this week’s upload of Edgar, you can now find at least one complete performance of every opera by Giacomo Puccini on my Mixcloud site.  Bryan Hymel and Angela Meade star in the composer’s second opera in a concert performance from Frankfurt in 2014.  Read more »

A spouse tale

A performance of Gluck’s Alceste from Wiener Staatsoper in June 2016.

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Scritto in ciel

In our circle, Mexico City in the summer was the opera capital of the world from the late 1940s and early 1950.

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Blut force

The very first Vienna post-war performance of Elektra.

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Keep the Rome fires burning

I offer an alternative to those who aren’t fans of Wagner: Mozart’s La clemenza di Tito from the house where it premiered.

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No saints in two acts

The cast of Wiener Staatsoper’s first-ever performance of Lulu in 1968 reads like a Who’s Who of then-contemporary Austro-German opera: the 28-year-old Anja Silja, Martha Mödl, Waldemar Kmentt, Hans Hotter, Hilde Konetzni, Manfred Jungwirth, Heinz Zednik, and Karl Böhm presiding over a production by Otto Schenk. 

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Head of state

To celebrate the 86th anniversary of her birth (25 May 1929), I bring to a close Beverly Sills’ traversal of the Donizetti “Tudor Queens” with this live Anna Bolena from 1973.

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