Although she began her career nearly 25 years ago recording and performing lots of baroque music, I was surprised to see German soprano Dorothea Röschmann promoted as the star attraction of an all-Purcell concert Sunday at Carnegie Hall by Les Violons du Roy and La Chappelle de Québec. Read more »
“Nobody wants to spend three or four hours of their life sitting through a mediocre opera performance, especially when you consider what tickets cost these days. But mediocre means ‘average,’ so, statistically speaking, if you go to the opera a lot, it means you’re going to be confronted with middling performances more often than not. You have to kiss a lot of frogs, right?” Our Own JJ crunches the numbers at the Met and LoftOpera in the New York Observer. (Photo: Ken Howard/Metropolitan Opera)
Before this recording arrived in my mailbox, I: ( a) didn’t know there was an operatic version of Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest, one of my favorite plays; and (b) was unfamiliar with the works of composer Gerald Berry. After several hearings, I’m still not convinced that there is an operatic version of Earnest. Barry has created what I would call a narrative set to a series of sound effects. Now many of these effects are clever, occasionally amusing, and purposely bizarre, but they rarely seem to fit the brilliant verbal wit of Wilde’s original. I kept thinking that, if Lulu was a comedy, it would sound a lot like this. Read more »
Coming from placid, luxurious Geneva, where I am currently living, Berlin felt even more jarring than usual.
“The Met’s revival of Verdi’s Ernani Friday night was every inch a tragic opera, though without being grand in any way. Its grisliest calamity was not the one the composer devised but rather one the production’s star, Plácido Domingo, brought on himself.”
If works like Salome and Erwartung defined modernism in the first decades of the 20th century, Die Tote Stadt and Palestrina represented the regressive avant garde.
The opening night of the Metropolitan Opera of September 1972 was supposed to be the dawn of a new era.
“’They’re young… they’re in love… and they kill people’ goes the tagline for the 1968 film Bonnie and Clyde, but the slogan could apply almost as well to the outlaw pair at the center of the Metropolitan Opera’s white-hot revival of Massenet’s Manon.”
“Michael Volle is not into bling,” begins an article in ACT-O, the glossy magazine of the Grand Théâtre de Genève.