Cher Public

  • Porgy Amor: Thanks for the kind words, phoenix. My own nod to La Cieca for the great photos. 1:00 AM
  • parpignol: in house: Alagna sounded well enough, but not comfortable with the role; Luisi was tentative as he tried to accommodate the... 12:55 AM
  • Porgy Amor: I agree with your very good summing-up of both Opolais and Westbroek, mrsjohnclaggart. I’ve seen the Covent Garden... 12:40 AM
  • mrsjohnclaggart: PCally, I didn’t think Opolais sang with any great beauty or remarkable ease tonight, she sounds like an HD... 12:20 AM
  • Howling in Tune: They were thinking, “This’ ll be quite an event if it happens, but we’d better have a backup... 12:16 AM
  • Constantine A. Papas: Give Alagna some slack. He has never sung the role and had a week to learn it. He’ll get better. Maybe is me... 11:52 PM
  • PCally: mrsjohnclaggart, I have seen both this and her broadcast from Baden Baden, where this met production originally premiered.... 11:22 PM
  • Vergin Vezzosa: @coloraturafan – enthusiastic + 1, having seen MS three times this season and having been transported by multiple... 10:56 PM

But the Levy was dry

The redevelopment that took place at Lincoln Center during Reynold Levy’s tenure as president of Lincoln Center represents a considerable accomplishment.  One can can question decisions, priorities and outcomes (devoting precious plaza real estate to a very good, but very expensive restaurant; the awkward, treacherous path from the Met through a Brian de Palma-inspired tunnel to the subway),  but Levy deserves recognition for the combination of  fundraising savvy, stubbornness, and leadership he displayed in getting this done.  Surely, there’s an interesting saga to told. Unfortunately, Levy’s ponderously titled memoir They Told Me Not to Take that Job: Tumult, Betrayal, Heroics, and the Transformation of Lincoln Center doesn’t tell it.   Read more »

“Die Zeit, die ist ein sonderbar’ Ding”

In keeping (tangentially) with our Rosenkavalier theme this weekend, here is a tale that is, as it were, as old as time, and just about as unreliable. After the jump, La Cieca produces documentary evidence that Peter Gelb has single-handedly ravaged the finances of the Met not only during his own incumbency, but in the distant past as well. Read more »

Borne back ceaselessly into the past

So, cher public, have you heard about this fabulous new plan to revive the New York City Opera under the direction of Michael Capasso? A keystone of the “Renaissance” of the company (as the prospectus puts it) will be to perform “period-consistent productions of standard repertoire” (e.g., the Franco Zeffirelli production of Tosca) in the Rose Theater. A more detailed plan, including scary photos of naked old people in Johann Kresnik‘s Erfurt production of Un ballo in maschera, may be found here.

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Out of Touch

In a press release that was obviously sent in 1985 and for some bizarre reason only just arrived an hour ago, Lyric Opera of Chicago has announced the production of a new Ring cycle with Sir Andrew Davis conducting and David Pountney directing.

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Ancien regie

“But like any production left out in the sun a few decades, it gradually faded into mere decoration.”

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Constellation

Here, for the first time in 40 years, the CBS telecast of the April 21-22 gala honoring the retirement of Sir Rudolf Bing.

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Once in half a lifetime

Then and now: the “Dio ti giocondi, o sposo” duet from Otello.

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Re-entrance

La Cieca (not pictured) has just accessed a new feature in YouTube that imported a dozen or so “classic” parterre video clips from Google Video into the familiar YouTube interface.

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Le duc d’Orleans, le duc d’Ayen…

Former Editor of Opera News and Director of Opera-Music Theater at the National Endowment for the Arts Patrick J. Smith (pictured) yearns for the ancien régime: “We used to go to the opera for the voices. Zinka Milanov…” And so, anyone who has serious informed criticism of how Peter Gelb runs the Met now can look forward to getting lumped in with the reactionary prigs. [Musical America]

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