Cher Public

  • Milly Grazie: Am I the only one sick to the back teeth of the “love-ins 221; that pass for bows or curtain calls….. in my... 7:08 PM
  • williams: Zaftig middle aged folks roleplaying love struck teenagers? 6:58 PM
  • antikitschychick: This string of comments is a perfect example of why we need a like button or a heart or something!! Armerj: your comment... 6:30 PM
  • antikitschychick: Nope. No dedication before the performance on saturday though I suspect they’ll say something before or during... 6:25 PM
  • manou: Maybe someone will administer the coup de grâce (and no, it does not mean “mowing the lawn”). 6:17 PM
  • Porgy Amor: I wondered if there had been a dedication of the Saturday Tosca performance, but I thought antikk would have said something.... 6:13 PM
  • armerjacquino: Enjoying herself, if her twitter is anything to go by. 5:50 PM
  • gustave of montreal: The lady Sarah Fox has a beautiful voice. What’s she doing with that ham Wainwright. 5:26 PM

The devil is in the details

Certain operas are better in theory than practice. Boito’s Mefistofele has some undoubtedly fine tunes, and is perhaps neck-and-neck with Boris Godunov as a top bass star vehicle. But as an opera, it only works in fits and starts. For one, the fidelity to Goethe’s Faust gives the libretto a rather episodic, detached feel.

Gounod’s Faust might be a lot cheesier but it’s also more tightly focused and thus better theater. Boito’s opera has some some stunning choral work in the Prologue and Epilogue, a famous tune in Margherita’s lament “La altra notte” and an extremely enjoyable “Walpurgis Nacht” act but also a lot of filler. It’s not a long opera but it feels endless.   Read more »

The diva wears Prada

“Oubliez le XVIIIè siècle. A l’Opéra Comique, Platée s’installe sur les podiums d’une fashion week parisienne!” Unfortunately, the video of this performance is not available in the US: La Cieca will keep you updated. Meanwhile, take a look at DeCaffarrelli’s review of last night’s concert performance.

Nymph errant

“German fashion designer Karl Lagerfeld is a household name; 18th-century French composer Jean-Philippe Rameau isn’t.” [amNewYork]

Sir John and the horse

Come to the unstable

How, then, to explain the perplexing performance last Friday night of Falstaff, Mr. Levine’s first new production since his return?

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The rise of the clowns

What better way to spend a lazy Friday afternoon in midsummer than watching a webcast of Rigoletto?

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Behind the red curtain

It was indeed a curious sensation  making a late morning trek to East 59th Street, a block devoted to showro0ms for bizarre upscale furniture and lighting fixtures, and then to enter a boutique cinema specializing in Hindi films (the big coming attraction right now is Desi Boyz) — and all this before sitting down in an auditiorium half- full of retirees to see a live performance of Don Giovanni from La Scala. That it worked as a Mozart experience I think can be chalked up to two factors: Robert Carsen‘s production and the constantly improving (if still imperfect) HD technology. 

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Mirror, mirror

La Cieca is just back from the HD of Don Giovanni from La Scala: excellent singing through the whole cast, strong conducting (if tending to the slow side) by Daniel Barenboim, and a smart, chic production from Robert Carsen that frankly makes Michael Grandage look like an utter bumpkin. The presentation will repeat here in New York (and elsewhere) in coming days.

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