Little house on the scary

Laura Ingalls, only wilder / Photo: Scott Suchman

There are no fruited plains here. Out of a literal perforation in the horizon of the Nebraskan prairie emerges Proving Up, the most convincing case I have ever seen for modern American opera; the medium has been fitted to our sensibilities, using our sonic mediums and poetically and musically evoking our soundscape, and telling a uniquely American story by two of the most persuasive voices in American new opera.  Read more »

Tales of the Bavarian baloney pony

In November, everyone wanted to hear more about Jonas Kaufmann‘s Johnson. The top parterre stories of last month follow the jump.  Read more »

Girl power

In an alternate universe, Hillary Clinton, about a year past her election to the Presidency, made her way from the White House to the Kennedy Center on a balmy November eve, sat down next to the second and fourth women appointed to the Supreme Court (Justices Ginsburg and Kagan, notably in attendance), watched an illuminating production of an opera that openly confronts female sexuality, power, and militarism in a performance featuring a predominately female cast, much of which was trained in the American conservatory system, that was both directed and conducted by women at the top of their fields and overseen by the most powerful woman in opera in the United States.  Read more »

I see flags, I hear bells, There's a parade in Memphis. Photo: Scott Suchman

Celeste graffiti

Aida certainly has its longueurs.

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Keeping the faith

Going into Washington National Opera’s final presentation of the season, Madama Butterfly, I feared that I might be geisha’d out.

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Ring cycle

Washington National Opera continued a focus on recent works this season with Terence Blanchard and Michael Cristofer’s 2013 opera Champion on the life of boxer Emile Griffith.

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‘Dead Man,’ stumbling

The opera is relentlessly obvious, a work that repeatedly turns to tired tropes and canned characters to fill up its nearly three hour run time.

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Pyramid scheme

Isn’t it inspiring how deeply Francesca Zambello has sunk her tentacles into the heart of American opera?

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On topic

Washington National Opera’s American Opera Initiative, now in its 5th year, keeps the opera flame alight at the Kennedy Center during the long winter stretch between mainstage WNO productions.

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After the fall

Washington National Opera offered a shellshocked D.C. some much-needed diversion Saturday night, with a new production of La Fille du Regiment.

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