Eli Jacobson

Pretty poison Pretty poison

The wicked poisoner showed herself in fine form, full of purple passion and lusty music-making that would gladden the heart of any bel canto enthusiast or opera lover in general. 

on May 27, 2023 at 2:34 PM
A farewell to Frisell A farewell to Frisell

Old opera productions at the end of their performing life can be sad affairs. 

on May 02, 2023 at 11:28 AM
I’ll plant my own tree I’ll plant my own tree

Richard Strauss’ “Bucolic Tragedy in One Act” Daphne is one of his most beautiful and most frustrating works. 

on March 27, 2023 at 2:02 PM
Touched by a fallen Angel Touched by a fallen Angel

Angel Blue‘s refulgent, lush soprano blooms as Violetta’s vocal lines broaden and soar.

on March 10, 2023 at 1:34 PM
‘Elisir’ not quite ‘rara qualita’ ‘Elisir’ not quite ‘rara qualita’

On paper, the Met’s revival of L’elisir d’amore looked like a lovely evening.  And at times it was—a few scenes hinted at what it could be and what it might yet become.

on January 13, 2023 at 9:00 AM
A jewel, despite the setting A jewel, despite the setting

The first time I heard of Ermonela Jaho it was as the ultimate understudy.  In the aughts it seemed that every time Angela Gheorghiu or Anna Netrebko or whoever canceled, Jaho was standing by.

on January 08, 2023 at 8:08 AM
A star is porn A star is porn

Show business fables often involve an ambitious, if naïve, ingenue (male or female) desperate for fame.  This young wannabe finds fame and fortune: but it comes at a cost.

on November 25, 2022 at 12:17 PM
Back to the future Back to the future

After putting a hiatus on their awards in 2020 and 2021 (for reasons that are all too well-known to all of us), the Richard Tucker Foundation Gala returned on Sunday evening November 13 honoring soprano Angel Blue the 2022 Award winner.

on November 15, 2022 at 12:03 PM
We’ll always have Paris (or maybe not) We’ll always have Paris (or maybe not)

The revival of Don Carlo(s) which opened on November 3 restored the translated Italian text and the cut 1882 four-act revision not seen at the Met since Rudolf Bing’s last season in 1972.

on November 05, 2022 at 9:00 AM
He plays the violin He plays the violin

The pandemic had different effects on different people. 

on October 31, 2022 at 12:00 PM
Leaner, meaner and tighter Leaner, meaner and tighter

Why did Ted Sperling and MasterVoices choose to perform an old warhorse like Carmen which has been produced almost continuously over decades just up the street at Lincoln Center?

on October 26, 2022 at 3:03 PM
The prodigal The prodigal

Philippe Jaroussky mentioned introducing his encores that he has not appeared in New York in 12 years.

on October 24, 2022 at 11:58 AM
How do you solve a problem like ‘Medea’? How do you solve a problem like ‘Medea’?

Sondra Radvanovsky has an unconventional voice that is suited to unconventional characters and is best used in rangy, difficult music.  The lack of lush beauty was no deficit in depicting Medea’s jealousy and vengeful rage.

on September 28, 2022 at 3:50 PM
NYCO, out(doors) and proud NYCO, out(doors) and proud

The New York City Opera has become an elusive “now you see it, now you don’t” presence in the New York opera scene since the departure of main sponsor and chairman of the board Roy G. Niederhoffer in 2019.

on September 10, 2022 at 10:58 AM
Romeo and Gilda Romeo and Gilda

The winners of the evening were the composer Riccardo Zandonai and Teatro Grattacielo which pulled off a near-impossible feat with success.

on June 10, 2022 at 2:13 PM
Ghost of honor Ghost of honor

The elusive La dame blanche returned for one evening to New York City on May 28 thanks to the New Amsterdam Opera led by maestro Keith Chambers.

on June 04, 2022 at 8:00 AM
Give Paris one more chance Give Paris one more chance

Pavarotti and Freni are gone but the Franco Zeffirelli Bohème remains. 

on May 26, 2022 at 2:09 PM
Making her garden grown Making her garden grown

Joyce DiDonato admits that she is “a problem solver, a dreamer, and—yes I’m a belligerent optimist.”

on April 25, 2022 at 11:59 AM
Twisted sisters Twisted sisters

Nina Stemme’s Elektra always seemed the sanest individual onstage never quite giving over to obsession or hysteria with a good line in mordant sarcasm and contempt.

on April 04, 2022 at 1:23 PM
Soaring on multicolored wings Soaring on multicolored wings

Eleanora Buratto at this fully matured point of her career has a warm, creamy full lyric soprano that has the roundness and sweet warmth of a Freni but can also expand into the spinto power of a Tebaldi. 

on March 21, 2022 at 2:31 PM
Hopelessly human Hopelessly human

The Boston Symphony and Alban Berg’s “Wir arme Leut” spread musical riches at Carnegie Hall.

on March 17, 2022 at 12:00 PM
Desert island diva Desert island diva

This sterling revival shows the Metropolitan to be surviving well and in good shape.

on March 03, 2022 at 12:00 PM
Playing the diva vs. being the diva Playing the diva vs. being the diva

In the last weeks of January, as the Metropolitan Opera season wound to a close (prior to the winter hiatus) two striking sopranos were thrust into the limelight.

on January 27, 2022 at 8:39 AM
A Messy Little Christmas A Messy Little Christmas

Part vaudeville, part opera concert and part drag ball, Heartbeat Opera’s pageant was like a cup of eggnog spiked with a dash of LSD.

on December 25, 2021 at 10:00 AM
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