Our Own JJ makes his farewell to Gay City News, — not “in a box — simple pine” à la Morgana Neri — but with a review of the Met’s current production of Il trovatore. Meanwhile, still in place, and festive as ever, is that pearl among podcasts, The Entertainment Beat with Frances Gumm.

on March 13, 2009 at 8:05 PM

“In Adriana Lecouvreur, Domingo manages to portray plausibly a character young enough to be his grandson. He is the dashing Count Maurizio, who is entangled in a romantic triangle with the celebrated actress Adriana and a scheming princess. The count’s excuse for two-timing Adriana is perhaps the most original in the history of cheating. He’s…

on February 20, 2009 at 12:37 PM

Is it possible that Our Own JJ could ever complain about too much drama at the opera? In his review of Lucia for Gay City News, complain he does!

on February 06, 2009 at 2:41 PM

J’ai un ami, JJ, qui m’a raconté cette mise en scène de La rondine dans Gay City News.

on January 09, 2009 at 4:30 PM

“The campy diva lover in me should exult at the credit in the program ‘Renée Fleming‘s Costumes by Christian Lacroix,’ but in fact the couturier’s frocks were something of a mishmash. Best was a shimmering gold sheath that set off Fleming’s first entrance and trim waistline to perfection; worst was a rumpled ivory silk ballgown…

on December 18, 2008 at 3:51 PM

“The entertaining and friendly type. They are especially attuned to pleasure and beauty and like to fill their surroundings with soft fabrics, bright colors and sweet smells. They live in the present moment and don´t like to plan ahead – they are always in risk of exhausting themselves.” That’s how La Cieca (as author of…

on November 20, 2008 at 3:49 PM

Our Own JJ (right) reviews the Met’s revivals of Don Giovanni and Salome in Gay City News.

on October 16, 2008 at 7:24 PM

After Natalie Dessay‘s second act aria in La Fille du Régiment, the Metropolitan Opera audience just didn’t want to stop applauding — that’s how much fun they were having.  Finally the soprano had to shush them so this new production of the Donizetti comic opera (heard April 21) could rollick to its triumphant conclusion. Our…

on May 01, 2008 at 11:25 PM

Philip Glass’ 1980 opera “Satyagraha” is a very high-minded work, but it never hides behind its principles. Musically and scenically the Met’s production (seen April 11) would rank as a successful work of art even if its subject matter were less inspirational. Our own JJ’s review appears in the current issue of Gay City News.

on April 25, 2008 at 1:51 PM

“Three situations that inspire terror in any opera singer — going on as an understudy, making a Metropolitan Opera debut, singing that most challenging of all tenor roles, Wagner’s Tristan, for the first time. On March 14, Gary Lehman took on all these challenges in a single evening, emerging a hero.” Our Own JJ comments…

on April 03, 2008 at 5:28 PM

Our own JJ recounts how “John Doyle‘s new staging of Britten’s Peter Grimes at the Metropolitan Opera sinks without a trace” in the current issue of Gay City News.

on March 20, 2008 at 2:05 PM

Our Own JJ was at the Met last night (and part of this morning) to review Tristan und Isolde for Gay City News. As such he witnessed the rather astonishing series of events that Atomic Wings told you about earlier. La Cieca cannot of course ask JJ to comment on the specifics of the performance…

on March 15, 2008 at 1:53 AM

A loyal reader writes: I wanted to let you know that the Tristan prima was a disaster. Only because of the Tristan (which, I guess we can’t relegate to a minor consideration), since it was otherwise mostly okay — if you can accept zero visual dramatic sense in the whole expedition. (As an extreme illustration of this…

on March 11, 2008 at 10:29 AM

“Even though Puccini’s first successful opera is called Manon Lescaut, the eponymous party girl is not the real protagonist of the work. By far a more interesting character — and the recipient of Puccini’s most grateful music — is her lover Des Grieux.”  Our Own JJ reviews the Met’s revival of Manon Lescaut in the current…

on February 14, 2008 at 4:36 PM

Our own JJ‘s little scribblings over at Gay City News are now indexed on a handy page here at parterre.com.

on February 14, 2008 at 11:32 AM

La Cieca has just heard that Neil Shicoff has canceled the dress rehearsal of Luisa Miller at the Met; Eduardo Villa (cover for the run) will do it. And La Cieca has heard further that Sergio Blazquez, scheduled to make his NYCO debut in La boheme in April, is having visa problems, so Gerard Powers…

on March 10, 2006 at 4:14 AM

According to Gay City News, our editor JJ loved Angela Gheorghiu‘s Violetta, and he was more than a little enthused about Herr Jonas Kaufmann. Le public have spoken, and they want their video to stream quickly and reliably. So save this bookmark and visit frequently: it’s the parterre box page at Google Video. Here’s a…

on February 17, 2006 at 3:29 AM

“It’s not like there’s anyone who wants new operas to fail. In fact, audiences, critics, and opera companies alike have huge stakes in seeing new works succeed. And goodness knows the Metropolitan Opera, like any reputable opera company, has a responsibility to present recent compositions. However, reviews are not for good intentions; I have to…

on December 23, 2005 at 6:32 PM

Our publisher JJ sounds off on recent productions of Romeo et Juliette, Zaza and Giulliame Tell (which sounds like a very full king-sized bed indeed!) in the latest installment of Gay City News. Meanwhile, La Cieca presents Il trittico on Unnatural Acts of Opera.

on November 29, 2005 at 6:20 PM

“Newcomers to opera sometimes don’t get the appeal of a dramatic form with so few surprises. Audiences know how Tosca ends before the performance even begins. Earlier this month, though, two operas provided some measure of suspense.” JJ’s latest reviews in Gay City News.

on October 27, 2005 at 9:34 PM

“It’s always a treat to start the season with a pleasant surprise, and an exciting new dramatic soprano is one of the nicest discoveries of all—particularly when she heads up one of the strongest ensemble casts the Metropolitan Opera has fielded in years.” That’s our editor James beginning his 2005-06 season as a reviewer in…

on October 13, 2005 at 11:39 PM