Cher Public

Winter meeting: the top ten parterre posts for February 2018

Even the news of the Met’s upcoming season and coverage of important revivals of Semiramide and Parsifal couldn’t hold a candle to the cher public’s interest in the star pairing of Sonya Yoncheva and Michael Fabiano.

The top ten parterre posts for February:

Technical difficulties: La bohéme returned to the stage of the Metropolitan Opera once again last night (does it ever leave?) The cast was notable; in particular, Sonya Yoncheva provided a significant reason to see the company’s numbingly repetitive production. She followed Angel Blue and Anita Hartig in the role of Mimì.

The advent of the Nézet-Séguin era: Accelerating his arrival as Music Director by two seasons, Yannick Nézet-Séguin will take up the post in time for the start of the Metropolitan Opera’s 2018–19 season, it was announced today. By freeing up some guest conducting weeks in his busy calendar in both the 2018–19 and 2019–20 seasons, Nézet-Séguin will now be able to conduct three operas and two Met Orchestra concerts at Carnegie Hall.

Judges for yourself: With the Met’s announcement of the 2018-2019 season approximately a week away, La Cieca thought we should review the always oracular and generally accurate Future Met Wiki, where “opera enthusiasts share their (very) educated guesses about repertory and casting for future seasons of the Metropolitan Opera.”

Gilt Trip: As a diehard completist I felt guilty as the Met’s scattered, campy revival of Semiramide lumbered toward its abrupt conclusion after nearly four hours. I should have been more outraged about the cuts inflicted on Rossini’s great final Italian opera but frankly I didn’t want more.

Hemisemidemiramide: See, the problem with trying to revive Semiramide today is not the work’s vast length, its superhuman vocal demands, or even that bit of bother about an adorable elderly uncle’s roguish camp humour. The real issue, surely, is competing with the memory of the spectacular casting lavished upon the work during the golden age of the Volpe era.

Quote Unquote: Either venomous fishwife Norman Lebrecht has deliberately misquoted and misinterpreted what Jonas Kaufmann said in a recent interview, or else Jonas Kaufmann needs to go fuck himself.

Babylon unvisited: The Metropolitan Opera has fired octogenarian stage director John Copley from the company’s upcoming production of Semiramide after receiving a complaint about “inappropriate behavior in the rehearsal room.

Broadcast: La bohème: A 12:30 PM start for today’s broadcast of Puccini’s evergreen bohemians, cher public.

Broadcast: Parsifal: Tonight, cher public, time becomes space starting at 5:55 PM and 30 Lincoln Center Plaza.

Fifty shades of Grail: While I recognize that it’s an unparalleled masterpiece, Parsifal has always been a difficult opera for me to love. But the Met’s magnificent revival which opened on Monday night with a superb cast under the mesmerizing leadership of Yannick Nézet-Séguin nearly converted me into a devoted Parsifal disciple.

Photo of Yoncheva and Fabiano by Ken Howard/Metropolitan Opera.