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Door to door

The Met’s planned premiere of Iolanta/Bluebeard’s Castle was cancelled due to the Great Blizzard That Wasn’t. All ticket holders were given refunds and exchanges, and the premiere was moved to January 29. As a result the lobby of the Met pre-performance was a noisy zoo. The will call line spiraled almost to the basement stairs and my! all that fur (on both the men and the women). Outside was a small but noisy group of protestors. It’s understandable that the Met staff seemed a bit frazzled and overwhelmed.   Read more »

Shortlisted

“Surprises—or let’s say pleasant surprises—are among the chief joys of frequent opera-going. Best, and most  precious, of all these impromptu delights is the eagerly anticipated performance  that soars beyond even one’s most extravagant fantasies. That’s what happened  when Sonya Yoncheva sang her first Met La Traviata last Wednesday: I  expected something lovely, but what I beheld was nothing short of magnificent.” [New York Observer]

Wish upon a star

At what moment does a “rising star” become simply a “star”? A crucial step toward that operatic pinnacle may have occurred Wednesday evening at the Metropolitan Opera when soprano Sonya Yoncheva triumphed in her first US Violetta. Since its premiere there in 2010, Willy Decker’s starkly devastating production of Verdi’s La Traviata has been waiting for the ideal protagonist to don Wolfgang Gussmann’s iconic red dress and with its sixth soprano she has arrived. Read more »

Hoffmann

A wasted time

Vittorio Grigolo in the title role of the Met’s revival of Les Contes d’Hoffman is the opera version of the charming homeless drunk.

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Switchboard

Job description

La Cieca is sometimes asked what it is that a dramaturg does, or why it is that an opera house need a dramaturg

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Renee Glawari

Floperetta

>”Ghastly!” — New York Observer

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Tezier

Ah, con tal morbo ogni speranza è morta

Ludovic Tézier is continuing to recover from an illness.

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Traviata

Lost and found

Verdi must have gotten tired of tossing and turning by now and has gone back to resting in peace.

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Gheorghiu

Moon and stars

One of the major complaints about the five year casting system (as well as the shared productions by different companies) is that operatic events are rarely surprises anymore.

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Maurizio Muraro

Rossini crescendo

Sooner or later, Our Own JJ gets around to discussing the Met’s Barbiere di Siviglia and Juilliard’s Turco in Italia in this week’s New York Observer.

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