Cher Public

Female on the beach

Richard Strauss’ Ariadne auf Naxos started life as a favor to the great theatrical producer Max Reinhardt who had saved the world premiere of Der Rosenkavalier in Dresden in 1911. Reinhardt was now being given his choice of a musical/theatre piece to revive for the Deutsches Theater in Berlin. His choice would be Molière’s Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme with Hugo Von Hofmannsthal providing the new adaptation of the text and Strauss contributing incidental music in the manner of Lully and a final divertissement on the classical Ariadne.

Our musical history books show us that this exciting new hybrid entertainment eventually happened at the Stuttgart Court Theatre ballooning into a nearly five hour performance that left the audience, who were there mostly for their Strauss, in a state of benumbed frustration.  Even with judicious cutting in a number of other venues, including London under Sir Thomas Beecham, this version never found success. Read more »

Deliberate cruelty is unforgivable

For the second performance of Renée Fleming‘s “Perspectives” performances at Carnegie Hall she chose a semi-staged version of André Previn‘s A Streetcar Named Desire, with the “People’s Diva” herself in the iconic role of the unstable Blanche DuBois.  Bravo to her for choosing an opera based on an American subject matter that had yet to be presented in NYC!  Bravo to her for arriving at a level of celestial operatic stardom that allows her to cherry pick all manner of repertoire for her own series of concerts presented at Carnegie Hall!

And yet… Read more »

Teen spirit

Now that the Met’s 2013-2014 season has been published and almost immediately discussed to death, La Cieca thought it would be amusing to do a bit of speculation about what lies ahead as we approach the middle of the decade. An assemblage of gossip and guesswork about the 2014-2015 season follows the jump, and won’t it be fun to look back on this post next February when the official announcement is made? Read more »

Even smiling makes my face ache

You might even call it “fun.”

Read more »

Once in half a lifetime

Then and now: the “Dio ti giocondi, o sposo” duet from Otello.

Read more »

Our retrospection will now be all to the future

La Cieca predicts you won’t be seeing any puritans at the Met next season, except of course for the ones who slouch around during intermission hissing, “You call that a trill?”

Read more »

Thanking you so much

La Scoopenda tries on Vera Galupe-Borszkh‘s mantle of grandezza for an interview with the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Read more »

So what’s the deal with the Dew Fairy?

Renée Fleming, celebrated soprano, musical ambassador and riffmeister…

Read more »

Turban planning

Press release: “Lyric Opera of Chicago’s Renée Fleming Wears Her Creative Consultant Hat in Chicago and On the Road”

Read more »

A star is reborn

Let’s start with some refreshing news:  Poèmes is the finest thing Renée Fleming has recorded in many a season.

Read more »