Cher Public

Joel Rozen

Joel Rozen is a culture critic, anthropologist, and audiophile living in New York. His doctoral thesis at Princeton—still underway—is based on some field research he did in North Africa a few years ago; since then he’s enjoyed teaching in the city and writing about music. His love of opera can probably be traced back to high school, when he used to poach from his girlfriend’s dad’s CD collection. The orientation has changed and so has the digital format. What hasn’t is the Domingo/Studer Otello, which remains awesome, and unreturned.



Rigoletto on the fringe

Tanglewood may bring the classical music crowd to Lenox, but for opera, it’s all about neighboring Pittsfield, Mass.  Read more »

I’m no angel

Bard’s cultish Summerscape series continues to test our esoteric limits with Demon, Anton Rubinstein’s little-known opera about a demon who hankers for a Georgian princess. The work, which debuted in 1875, was for many years a sellout at the Mariinsky, captivating the Russian public with its brutish take on Lermontov’s racy poem of the same name. To this day it’s still performed over there with some frequency. Here in the West, the opera’s hardly known.  Read more »

Lakeside ‘Story’

For all the tribute concerts, tribute lectures, tribute screenings, tribute dinners, and uneasy think pieces. For all the pious revivals of Kaddish, Jeremiah, Dybbuk, and Chichester Psalms. For all the recent retreads of Trouble in Tahiti, Wonderful Town, Peter Pan, Candide and Quiet Place. For all the “I Hate Musics” and fringe recital regurgitations of “La Bonne Cuisine.” Read more »

O sofa fanciulla

Winsome, tony, and studded with overbooked bistros, Tanglewood is not exactly crawling with bohemians these days.

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The kiss we never dared we’ll dare in dreaming

If you’ve ever wondered what the Lost Boys’ abode might look like lined with mermaids, shopping carts, and unpeeled potatoes, look no further than Christopher Alden’s new production of Peter Pan.

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Cave dwellers

Composer/librettist David Hertzberg’s The Rose Elf, which gave its world premiere in the Green-Wood Cemetery Catacombs last weekend, is indeed a marvel of elfin proportions.

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If it ain’t ‘Brokeback’

Between staging, music, and material, it’s hard to decide what feels most broken about New York City Opera’s American premiere of Brokeback Mountain.

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I will remember you

Whether full-bodied and rich or comic and actorly, the baritone voice contains multitudes.

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