The Leonard Bernstein centennial is fast approaching my friends and by August of 2018 arts organizations worldwide will have unleashed a blitzkrieg of Lenny unto a (hopefully) indebted and (likely by then) musically exhausted public. The first shot across the bow appeared over the weekend from L.A. Opera with their inspired concert staging of his musical-comedy bouquet to New York, Wonderful Town. Read more »
Sometimes, as with last week’s upending election, history seems to jump to an entirely different, unimagined timeline. The individuals who cause these disruptive changes have been a fascination for Philip Glass, whose first three operas form the so-called “Portrait Trilogy” about visionaries who transformed their respective eras. Read more »
Macbeth has always been my favorite of Shakespeare’s plays. One of the many reasons for this is that it is his most succinct (read: shortest) of all his works. The characters get right down to work immediately with their foul deeds. Read more »
Los Angeles saw the first U.S. performance of Giacomo Puccini’s snow-dusted weeper in 1897 just a year after the young Toscanini led the prima in Turin.
Los Angeles first saw Giacomo Puccini’s Madama Butterfly presented at the Mason Opera House downtown in 1908 by the English Grand Opera Company. Rumors that LA Opera Artistic Director Placido Domingo portrayed Cio-Cio San’s little boy in that production remain unsubstantiated.
The revival of Mozart’s The Magic Flute at the Music Center downtown, last seen at LA Opera in 2013, is reason for jubilation for everyone except perhaps the singers engaged.
Remember that time you went to the opera and the entire evening was perfection?
As I leaned forward the woman in front of me turned to her seatmate and very quietly, in a voice thick with emotion and not a few tears, said, “it’s so beautiful.”
James Conlon, Music Director for the LA Opera, often does the pre-game lecture in the huge open space on the second floor lobby of the Dorothy Chandler Pavillion and it’s almost always a standing room only crowd.