Headshot of La Cieca

Cher Public

  • turings: Thanks, manou – very funny! Calleja reminds me a bit of Ramon Vargas – lovely lyric voice, seems... 6:28 AM
  • NPW-Paris: I saw that Lakmé. You were better off just hearing it. 4:16 AM
  • NPW-Paris: Some of us here have also seen it (and discussed it) and found it a disappointment. 4:02 AM
  • MontyNostry: I’ve always found Ken Russell’s (admittedly rather tacky, but that’s Ken for... 3:41 AM
  • armerjacquino: Whoa there. ‘Matronly 217; doesn’t mean the same as ‘maternal 217;. 2:53 AM
  • armerjacquino: Shicoff was no slouch either. 2:52 AM
  • guy pacifica: Thanks for posting that snippet of Aria. A reminder that I must watch it again. There are some... 2:36 AM
  • Krunoslav: Croatia a/k/a Dalmatia produced several “ItalianR 17; opera singers, including Ester... 1:47 AM
  • Krunoslav: ‘When was last superb Rodolfo [--] Carreras???’ Fabiano is excellent, but I’ll... 1:24 AM
  • antikitschychick: goodness what a harsh review! Poor Joseph Calleja is reduced to a Teddy Bear…and... 12:35 AM

It’s complicated

Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg is a problematic opera—or, rather, it is an  opera that has, in the last century or so, become problematic. Its composer,  Richard Wagner, was a profound artist who insisted in treating on profound  themes: Life, Death, Love, Redemption and so forth. In this opera, though, his  focus shifted to different universalities: Art and (here comes the troubling  part) what you might call ‘German-ness’.” [New York Observer] (Photo: Ken Howard/Metropolitan Opera)

Puss perfect

Xavier Montsalvatge is best known in these parts for the songs of his “Antilles” period in the 1940s, the exquisite “Cinco Canciones Negras” and so on, making use of rhythms and melodies with a Caribbean flavor. In a ninety-year life, nearly all of it passed quietly in his turbulent native Catalonia, honored by every changing governments, he wrote in a dozen forms and as many styles, ignoring the trends, remaining true to himself.   Read more »

Martinu, very dry

Gotham Chamber Opera, which began to operate twelve years ago with a double bill of Bohuslav Martinu’s quirky little pieces, opened its 2014-15 season with two more, Alexandre bis (Alexander, twice) and Comedy on the Bridge. Both were composed in the 1930s, when Martinu, like any East European with artistic aspirations, was living in Paris. There, he became acquainted with the neo-classicism of Stravinsky, the modernism of Les Six, with surrealism and le jazz hot. His music is difficult to pigeonhole: quirky, light, individual. When war broke out, he absconded to America, which he enjoyed, but he returned to Europe before his death in 1959.  Read more »

Alexandre

Daily double

Here’s a quick last-minute quiz for you Martinu fans out there: answer the question after the jump and win two tickets to Gotham Chamber Opera’s double bill program of Alexandre bis and Comedy on the Bridge this week.

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PHOTO CREDIT – Richard Termine

Raven review

The NY Phil Biennial, a new music festival that is dedicated to new music, kicked off its first season at a drowsy time on the performing arts calendar, the week after Memorial Day.

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Photo: Ken Howard/Metropolitan Opera

West side, east side

Recently, opera showed up at both Mets, the Metropolitan Opera and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

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orphee_thumb

Orpheus goes downtown

Marc-Antoine Charpentier came along at the wrong time for a composer of French opera.

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two_boys

Desk set

“Two Boys demonstrates that Mr. Muhly is capable of very great things indeed, offering extended glimpses of the kind of masterpiece he just missed writing here, and, more happily, of the kind of masterpiece I feel confident he will write in the future.”

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baden_baden_donath

Breaking Baden

Baden-Baden 1927 is the title Gotham Chamber Opera has given to its evening of four brief operas that premiered together at a festival in, yes, Baden-Baden on July 17, 1927.

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Sound please!

Magrets de canard

For our weekly meander through mendacity, we turn to no less than Gotham Chamber Opera’s own Neal Goren, who writes, “People repeat as fact that women ruin their voices, or at least sacrifice their high notes, by singing in chest voice. So untrue!”

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