Turn and face the strange Turn and face the strange

How appropriate that the Met should present this supposedly “Jewish” opera after many in the audience had just spent twelve days immersed in the genuine article over the High Holy Days.

on October 02, 2023 at 9:00 AM
Ohne Ziel, ohne Rast Ohne Ziel, ohne Rast

Instead of following the story, we in the audience spend most of the evening thinking “What?? Why is that happening?”

on September 30, 2023 at 10:00 AM
Tremens factus sum ego Tremens factus sum ego

One got a sense that the Met and the maestro directed most of the rehearsal and preparation toward the opening night premiere of the Heggie opus

on September 29, 2023 at 2:09 PM
Nun of a kind Nun of a kind

“None of that sentimental crap, okay?”

on September 28, 2023 at 12:00 PM
Think different Think different

Bay Area composer Mason Bates’s and librettist Mark Campbell’s contemporary opera about the life of the tech mogul Steve Jobs came home “to the place where it all began” in spectacular fashion

on September 28, 2023 at 10:00 AM
Some unholy war Some unholy war

Rather than focusing on a narrative, Unholy Wars explores a series of timeless yet current themes: war, destruction, alienation, and what it means to be perceived as outsider—particularly from the Middle East—in the context of a violent world.

on September 27, 2023 at 10:00 AM
Double take Double take

German opera-director Claus Guth has reimagined Schwanengesang as a series of scarred soldier’s visions in Doppelgänger, showing this week in at the Park Avenue Armory.

on September 26, 2023 at 10:00 AM
Dogecoin Dogecoin

In sum: not a perfect Simon Boccanegra—is there such a thing?—but a grand and often great one.

on September 25, 2023 at 2:31 PM
A madhouse is not a home A madhouse is not a home

David Devan may be leaving the company, but there can be no better living tribute to him than this extraordinary work, which in 90 minutes gives us everything we could want from a new opera

on September 23, 2023 at 1:00 PM
Float like a butterfly Float like a butterfly

Phil Chan described his point of departure for reimagining Orientalist works as the question, “what else could this be?”

on September 21, 2023 at 10:00 AM
Got to get you into my strife Got to get you into my strife

Power struggles, prejudice, feuds and revenge abound in San Francisco at the moment.

on September 20, 2023 at 9:55 AM
White hot White hot

The great archetypal image of an opera singer is a towering Wagnerian soprano who shatters entire panes of glass the moment she opens her mouth.

on September 16, 2023 at 9:00 AM
Tosca, two ways Tosca, two ways

When our friends at Naxos and C Major announced near-dueling releases of Puccini’s “shabby little shocker,” I was ready with my critic’s pen dipped in bile.

on September 11, 2023 at 9:00 AM
Elixir in the wine country Elixir in the wine country

At the northern tip of Seneca, longest and deepest of New York State’s Finger Lakes, sits the pretty little town of Geneva.

on July 29, 2023 at 9:00 AM
The king of queens The king of queens

In the case of this summer’s resuscitation project at the Bard Summerscape Festival, Camille Saint-Saëns’ Henri VIII , it was quite evident that this is a dramatically sound work with consistently well-crafted, theatrically vital and attractive music that provides at least three roles for gifted singing actors.

on July 25, 2023 at 4:14 PM
It takes a fairy to make something pretty It takes a fairy to make something pretty

Teatro Nuovo took a spirited journey of rediscovery into the valley of forgotten operas and resurrected Federico and Luigi Ricci’s 1850 opera buffa Crispino e la Comare last Thursday at the Rose Theater at Jazz at Lincoln Center.

on July 24, 2023 at 3:50 PM
It’s hard to be a saint in the city It’s hard to be a saint in the city

It was thrilling to see and hear Will Crutchfield’s insights come to life onstage in performance when Teatro Nuovo performed Poliuto at the Rose Theater at Jazz at Lincoln Center Wednesday July 19.

on July 23, 2023 at 9:00 AM
Prosperity gospel in tango shoes Prosperity gospel in tango shoes

If sex sells, then the 40 years of success for Evita show that the strawman construction and vicious takedown of an unsexy, supremely unlikable woman in just under two-and-a-half hours is just as viable a quantity.

on July 17, 2023 at 2:41 PM
Grown deep like the rivers Grown deep like the rivers

June is long gone. It was truly a month of excellence and exuberance here in San Francisco, coupled with cozy and inviting weather, as if to make up for the extended winter.

on July 12, 2023 at 3:50 PM
The men who rule Ramrod The men who rule Ramrod

It’s been eight decades since darling Aix-en-Provence was under attack—its last formal invasion, at least by non-operagoers, was in 1942 during the German occupation of southern France. But on Friday, the town was besieged once again by its annual festival, with two dazzling premieres that examined the cruel and constructive dimensions of war and revolution.

on July 12, 2023 at 11:25 AM
Stravinsky in the streets, Dostoevsky in the sheets Stravinsky in the streets, Dostoevsky in the sheets

The Aix festival organized two back-to-back evening concerts dedicated to the Russian masters. One was an embarrassment of Slavic riches, the other… well, just an embarrassment.

on July 11, 2023 at 1:00 PM
Quat’sousical the musical Quat’sousical the musical

With unrest and looting nearby as France learned collectively that minority lives should matter, Marseille-adjacent Aix-en-Provence could be forgiven for the heavy-handedness of launching its 75th anniversary summer Festival with a new French translation of the ultimate carnival of social tension, The Threepenny Opera.

on July 06, 2023 at 7:46 PM
Looking for Trouble Looking for Trouble

The ailing and grief-stricken Pinkerton was shown to give his son a diary about his time in Nagasaki, and as Trouble read it, he (and the audience) was taken back in time as the story came to life, similar to the use of Pensieve in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Book 4).

on June 27, 2023 at 12:18 PM
Blond ambition Blond ambition

This showcase concert gave notice that countertenor Hugh Cutting is among the most promising artists of his generation.

on June 26, 2023 at 9:48 AM