Cher Public

Too cloistered for comfort

New Amsterdam Opera, first heard last year in a surprisingly enjoyable performance of La forza del destino, returned on Saturday night with a concert version of Donizetti’s elaborate score La favorita, offering energy, panache and several top-notch young soloists. Read more »

The power of fête

When Italy was united, Verdi—a national icon if ever there was one—was elected to the new parliament in Turin, where he was bored to distraction by the rhetoric of politicians—Italian politicians at that! He spent his time in the Chamber working out fugal subjects based on pols’ speech patterns as they declaimed programs that made a Temistocle Solera libretto seem rational and concise. The first offer to compose a new opera that came his way, from St. Petersburg as it happened, he signed it and ran off. Let them just try to get him back from Russia for a roll call vote!  Read more »