Christopher Corwin began writing for parterre box in 2011 under the pen name “DeCaffarrelli.” His work has also appeared in , The New York Times, Musical America, The Observer, San Francisco Classical Voice and BAMNotes. Like many, he came to opera via the Saturday Met Opera broadcasts which he began listening to at age 11. His particular enthusiasm is 17th and 18th century opera. Since 2015 he has curated the weekly podcast Trove Thursday on parterre box presenting live recordings.
While it must be admitted that Elza van den Heever doesn’t have an ideally warm and agile Handel voice, she evidenced fierce control over her instrument and skillfully built a powerful portrait of the courageous Rodelida fighting for her survival.
Jaromir Weinberger’s Svanda dudák is rarely performed at all and more often than not in German rather than its original Czech, so Trove Thursday inevitably offers Schwanda der Dudelsackpfeifer from Dresden with Marjorie Owens, Tichina Vaughn, Christoph Pohl and Ladislav Elgr.
Despite having lost its announced Cherubino, conductor and Count (the latter in the midst of rehearsals), the season premiere of Le Nozze di Figaro Saturday afternoon proved to be one of the most enjoyable Met Mozart performances I’ve attended in ages.
For Christmas 2021 Trove Thursday welcomes The Three Wise Cis-Men each bearing a broadcast of my favorite sacred work by Mozart, the “Great” Mass in C minor, featuring a sterling American soprano: Kathleen Battle, Arleen Augér and Lisette Oropesa.
My sister Julie celebrates an important birthday later this month which reminded me—as I also recalled I visiting her while she was living in Prague—that I should unearth Bohuslav Martin?’s Julietta with Lucia Popp and Dénes Gulyás for this week’s Trove Thursday.
As one can see from the chronology published earlier this year, the American Opera Society, in addition to reviving a number of now familiar operas, introduced many singers who became important local figures; however, there were shooting-star exceptions like today’s Trove Thursday offering of d’Albert’s Tiefland featuring Angeles Gulin and Ion Buzea.
Symphony orchestras crave Wagner so much they occasionally program single acts of one of the master’s demanding operas, especially Die Walküre’s rapturous first, so Trove Thursday offers six (!) incestuous concert renditions spanning half a century.