Cher Public

Foolish love

rj-1After all the horror and trauma of 2016, a double suicide honestly sounds like the perfect way to end the year. Well, at least the Metropolitan Opera agrees with me; and so the company ushers out this wretched year and rings in the new with an elegant and effective new production of Charles Gounod’s Roméo et Juliette, succinctly directed by Bartlett Sher and conducted with passion and generosity by Gianandrea NosedaRead more »

Mahlerei

gerhaherChristian Gerhaher does not appear at first to sing but rather to speak on pitches, telling stories, explaining words by lingering on them or biting them off short.  Read more »

Conversion narrative

abigailleBlood-and-guts singing is the reason to see Nabucco at the Metropolitan Opera this season. Featuring a vocally adventurous cast, and the keen conducting of James Levine, the company redeems a seemingly cheap and outdated production by Elijah Moshinsky, with passionate music making and searing theatricality.  Read more »

macbeth-1

Daggers are a thane’s best friend

How often do you hear Macbeth with four really good singers in its four big roles?

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salome-racette

Mourning glory

I can think of no other role that provides the most unique promise of humiliation, and consequently the most opportunity for glory.

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wonderful-town

It’s about this town

L.A. Opera offered an inspired concert staging of Leonard Bernstein’s musical-comedy bouquet to New York, Wonderful Town.

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loin-2

Chanson d’amour

Much like Wagner’s Tristan und Isolde, which launched the Met’s 2016-2017 season, Kaija Saariaho’s L’Amour de Loin is an opera about love and death.

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aida-3

Tag sale

It is a good rule of thumb that if you emerge from a massive grand opera like Aida feeling any less than overwhelmed, you have a right to be somewhat disappointed.

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didonato

Harmony of contrasts

Joyce DiDonato’s atest album, In War & Peace: Harmony through music, is more specific than it sounds.

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joyce-el-khoury

All about my mother

Operatic history can be cruel where multiple works with the same subject are concerned

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