La Cieca

James Jorden (who writes under the names "La Cieca" and "Our Own JJ") is the founder and editor of parterre box. During his 20 year career as an opera critic he has written for the New York Times, Opera, Gay City News, Opera Now, Musical America and the New York Post. He has also raised his voice in punditry on National Public Radio. From time to time he has directed opera, including three unsuccessful productions of Don Giovanni, a work he hopes to return to someday. Currently he alternates his doyenne duties with writing a weekly column on opera for the New York Observer.


La bohème La bohème

Starring Kristine Opolais, Susanna Phillips, Vittorio Grigolo, Massimo Cavalletti, Patrick Carfizzi and Oren Gradus, conducted by Stefano Ranzani. From April 5, 2014.

on August 15, 2020 at 4:49 PM
“The great actors are the luminous ones” “The great actors are the luminous ones”

Born on this day in 1879 actress Ethel Barrymore.

on August 15, 2020 at 11:16 AM
Turandot Turandot

Starring Nina Stemme, Anita Hartig, Marco Berti and Alexander Tsymbalyuk, conducted by Paolo Carignani. From January 30, 2016.

on August 13, 2020 at 3:30 PM
NYCO, yet again? NYCO, yet again?

New York City Opera (remember them?) have announced a program for spring 2021, with repertoire consistent with the company’s recent policy of equal-opportunity pandering.

on August 13, 2020 at 10:58 AM
Rigoletto Rigoletto

Starring Christiane Eda-Pierre, Isola Jones, Luciano Pavarotti, Louis Quilico and Ara Berberian, conducted by James Levine. From December 15, 1981.

on August 12, 2020 at 6:15 PM
Future indefinite Future indefinite

Are plans for reopening America’s opera houses in the winter of 2020-2021 unrealistic?

on August 12, 2020 at 3:35 PM
“It’s the giant squid!” “It’s the giant squid!”

Born on this day in 1881 filmmaker Cecil B. DeMille.

on August 12, 2020 at 9:57 AM
Carmen Carmen

Starring Aleksandra Kurzak, Clémentine Margaine, Roberto Alagna and Alexander Vinogradov, conducted by Louis Langrée. From February 2, 2019.

on August 11, 2020 at 7:13 PM
Manon Lescaut Manon Lescaut

Starring Karita Mattila, Marcello Giordani and Dwayne Croft, conducted by James Levine. From February 16, 2008.

on August 11, 2020 at 10:00 AM
Hadrian Hadrian

“With its blend of history, political intrigue, and fantastical invention, all woven into a heartbreaking love story, Hadrian gives one of history’s greatest queer romances the full, grand opera treatment.”

on August 10, 2020 at 4:37 PM
“An unusual display of jewels” “An unusual display of jewels”

Another point of etiquette is that a gentleman must never leave the ladies of his own box alone.

on August 10, 2020 at 9:52 AM
La cambiale di matrimonio La cambiale di matrimonio

In order to spare the cher public the agony of sitting through the Met’s Don Giovanni again, La Cieca offers this brand-new video from the Teatro Rossini di Pesaro.

on August 09, 2020 at 5:13 PM
Singing in the reign Singing in the reign

Happy 61st birthday soprano Maria Guleghina!

on August 09, 2020 at 9:30 AM
Agrippina Agrippina

Starring Brenda Rae, Joyce DiDonato, Kate Lindsey, Iestyn Davies, Duncan Rock and Matthew Rose, conducted by Harry Bicket. From February 29, 2020.

on August 08, 2020 at 5:00 PM
Das Rheingold Das Rheingold

Frank Castorf’s staging of the Ring, premiered in 2013 and filmed in 2016, provoked controversy right from the beginning. For Castorf, the Rheingold of our days is oil; thus he places the first part of the tetralogy at a gas station on Route 66.

on August 08, 2020 at 10:16 AM
Grand tour Grand tour

Happy birthday tenor Bryan Hymel.

on August 08, 2020 at 9:39 AM
Parsifal Parsifal

Starring Waltraud Meier, Siegfried Jerusalem, Bernd Weikl and Kurt Moll, conducted by James Levine. From March 28, 1992.

on August 07, 2020 at 5:21 PM
Madama Butterfly Madama Butterfly

Starring Kristine Opolais, Maria Zifchak, Roberto Alagna and Dwayne Croft, conducted by Karel Mark Chichon. From April 2, 2016.

on August 06, 2020 at 3:49 PM
A pride of Leos A pride of Leos

Born on this day in 1619 soprano Barbara Strozzi.

on August 06, 2020 at 1:00 AM
Simon Boccanegra Simon Boccanegra

Starring Kiri Te Kanawa, Plácido Domingo, Vladimir Chernov and Robert Lloyd, conducted by James Levine. From January 26, 1995.

on August 05, 2020 at 5:47 PM
Les Contes d’Hoffmann Les Contes d’Hoffmann

Starring Erin Morley, Hibla Gerzmava, Kate Lindsey, Christine Rice, Vittorio Grigolo and Thomas Hampson, conducted by Yves Abel. From January 31, 2015.

on August 04, 2020 at 4:27 PM
Der Rosenkavalier Der Rosenkavalier

Camilla Nylund, Günther Groissböck, Michèle Losier and Nadine Sierra star, under the baton of Zubin Mehta.

on August 04, 2020 at 12:19 PM
Inside, outside Inside, outside

“While Renée Fleming performed without an audience, DG Stage offered Puccini’s beloved melodrama Tosca before an outdoor crowd in Naples.”

on August 04, 2020 at 9:16 AM
The Magic Flute The Magic Flute

Or, frankly, TBA. If you of the cher public can come up with something more interesting than this dreary Flute, La Cieca would be more than happy to go with that.

on August 03, 2020 at 5:18 PM
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