Cher Public

Wan lake

The sound of Joyce DiDonato, Lawrence Brownlee and John Osborn nailing La Donna del Lago’s thrilling second-act trio alone made worthwhile enduring one of the ugliest, most bone-headed productions seen at the Metropolitan Opera in many a year.   Read more »

“The cold bothered me, anyway”

“It was the chilliest opening night at the Met in years on Monday—barely 15 degrees when the curtain went up on the company premiere of La Donna del Lago. But you can’t blame the polar vortex for the audience’s cool reception of this tuneful but dramatically inert Rossini melodrama.” [New York Observer] (Photo: Ken Howard/ Metropolitan Opera)

One for the woad

Ellen Douglas—Elena, if you will; the Lady of the Lake—finds herself in Act II of Rossini’s La Donna del Lago in the far from unusual operatic position of having her love claimed by two impassioned tenors in the bel canto version of a macho drag race. What is curious about this is her solution: She runs off with the mezzo-soprano. Well, wouldn’t you? The story of the opera’s a bit like Ernani (one of the suitors is a lecherous king in disguise, just as you’d expect), but only if Ernani ended happily, at the end of Act III, say. Read more »

Be my guest!

James Levine turns 72 this year. Even though his health has improved considerably in the past year and he may continue to conduct for a decade or more, it seems inevitable that he will step down as the Met’s Music Director sometime in the next few years to assume the role of Conductor Laureate.

Read more »