Cher Public

Pyramid scheme

The Metropolitan Opera was just over 100 years old when on January 19, 1984 it premiered Rinaldo, its first ever opera by George Frideric Handel; Samson (not an opera, by the way), Giulio Cesare and Rodelinda have followed. History repeated itself on Thursday when Sir David McVicar’s eclectically entertaining production arrived, the second time the MET has resorted to importing a nearly decade-old Cesare from England. But with a hard-working cast crowned by a resurgent Natalie Dessay as Cleopatra, the Met has done an honorable job in bringing back this most popular and enjoyable of Handel’s great masterpieces.   Read more »

In the day of success

Just as, back in 1955, dear Vivien Leigh discovered about the Weird Sisters, La Cieca today is ready today to say of her cher public, “I have learned by the perfectest report they have more in them than mortal knowledge.” Or, to put it in less allusive terms, it’s time for you to put your skills to the test in yet another voice identification quiz, this one with a Scottish theme. Read more »

Fully equipped with fire and music

“The Greek drama affords us one character which, had Shakespeare studied it in the three great tragedians of that people, and then, preserving Greek manners as ably as he did Roman, written it from his own heart and mind, might have been worthy to succeed the greatest achievement of the stage. The character I mean is Electra, the daughter of Agamemnon, the sister of Orestes.”

That’s an excerpt, as you all surely recognize, from Memoirs of Mrs. Siddons: interspersed with anecdotes of authors and actors. Sad to say, neither Shakespeare nor the Queen of Drury Lane (pictured) ever created an Electra; however, fortunately for posterity, her contemporary Mozart did set this wild and whirling creature to music.  And thus we are brought in a roundabout way to yet another of our beloved vocal identification quizzes. Read more »

Viva, viva il nostro Alcide!

Congratulations to Cesare 15 (pictured, right) who came, saw and—after a false start or two—conquered in the very challenging “Piangerò” quiz devised by Our Own DeCaffarrelli!

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A time to weep

Don’t let the headline worry you, cher public, what’s coming up after the jump is meant to be good clean fun, with a prize even.

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