Apple bites backThe reviews for Apple’s iTunes 4.9 are mixed but the consensus is “thumbs up.” La Cieca downloaded and installed the new version last night; very smooth. The interface with podcasts is something less than lavish, the one part of the application that feels “freeware.” But La Cieca realizes there are a lot of people out there who use iTunes as their only jukebox software, so it seems likely that this development will increase the podcast public significantly. A good thing. The down side is that Apple has to review the podcasts before putting them on the one-click “subscribe” list, which means that you can’t just go to the site and click on “Unnatural Acts of Opera.”

But there is a simple workaround. From iTunes, click on Advanced, the Subscribe To Podcast…, then paste into the URL text box. Then then click OK. That will subscribe you to the podcast series.

You can also subcribe on My Yahoo. Just Click on Add Content Add RSS by URL, then paste the URL and continue as in the iTunes instructions.

I’m also working on a tweak that would allow you to play the current “Unnatural Act” directly from the parterre podcast page; more on that maybe this weekend, as well as the first “regular” unnatural act, which at the moment looks like it’s going to be Act 1 Traviata from Verona 1970 (Scotto, Bergonzi).

Now, about the Met’s plans for a tab version of Magic Flute in the Julie Taymor production. La Cieca says, “Oh, why the hell not?” Somehow La Cieca feels that a 90-minute, fast-moving entertainment is a lot closer to Mozart’s original intention than the three-hour plus behemoth the Met delivers when they do the Gesamt version.