In the more than 500 years of the history of operas, rarely (if ever) has a coming of age story, particularly one from the child’s point of view, been presented as the main topic of the opera.
Of all Handel’s oratorios, Semele begs most to be staged.
As the first of the 2018 opera productions last Saturday, the Merola Opera Program chose Mozart’s rarely-performed early serenata, Il re pastore.
Strikingly styled photos of Iréne Theorin may be found on her website.
In recent years, Opera Paralléle has established a reputation for creative programming of contemporary opera in San Francisco. Persuaded both by the promise of an unusual Bernstein-Heggie double bill, and the unusual venue of SF Jazz’s Miner Auditorium, I had the pleasure of attending an excellent production this past week.
“American tenor Matthew Polenzani sings the title role opposite Natalie Dessay as Antonia, Christian Van Horn as the four villains, Angela Brower as Nicklausse, Hye Jung Lee as Olympia, Irene Roberts as Giulietta and Jacqueline Piccolino as Stella.”
La Cieca has obtained this photo of Thomas Hampson headlining Camouflage Night at Powerhouse, uh, rehearsing for Heart of a Soldier at the San Francisco Opera. You can tell the scene is Northern Rhodesia in 1962, because that is where the British military first started offering complimentary personal training packages to their troops.
Reactions to the Zambello Ring may have been mixed, but the response to the Parterrian meet-ups was roaringly positive, as shown by the massive turnout for the last pre-Götterdämmerung brunch. So here (well, actually, not here, but rather after the jump) are the faces behind some of the monikers.
Here goes with the End of the Gods and the End of these Ring reviews: Götterdämmerung was more of a mixed bag than the other operas, but still left a powerful impression. This was where Zambello’s choice to steer clear of heavy spectacle was most evident to me. The cost in grandeur was offset by…
Our Own Batty Masetto gently prods, “The first cycle of the San Francisco Ring starts Tuesday, and time’s running out for those who haven’t checked in yet to share in the Parterre festivities. A dazzling array of Parterrians (pictured) have signed up already, so you won’t’ want to miss out on the meet-ups at the…
The Bay Area Chapter of Parterre (pictured) would like to invite all out-of-town Parterrians for a social schedule of sniping, snarking, and general conviviality (hair-pulling strongly discouraged) during the three cycles of the San Francisco Ring.
“Great at push-ups and pull-ups? Do you put your friends to shame at the gym? Come show us what you’ve got! San Francisco Opera announces a public casting call seeking athletic men with specific skills to appear in an upcoming Company production in Fall 2011.” [San Francisco Opera]
La Cieca has managed to nab a few moments of video of tonight’s performance of Vec Makropulos from San Francisco, proving that Karita Mattila is indeed today’s ideal interpreter of the role of Emilia Marty. [Video]
“It is in the Wagner repertory that Ms. Brewer has truly frustrated her fans. She has sung Isolde magnificently, though so far only in the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s ‘Tristan Project,’ which used Bill Viola’s videos, while Ms. Brewer and the other lead singers performed as in a concert, with music stands and vocal scores.” [NYT]
Real estate news from San Francisco: the Potrero Hill home of the late Blanche Thebom, which “includes a very spacious living room that opens onto a large view deck,” is now for sale. [SocketSite]
San Francisco Opera is looking for a trio of Ramon Vargas lookalikes to serve as “doppelgängers” for the tenor in their upcoming production of Werther. [Contra Costa Times]
The lovely and personable Jumping Clapping Man will act as host/coordinator of the first-ever Norcal Parterre.com Gathering Demented Mini-Conference (as seen in the above artist’s rendering). Details after the jump (and clap).
Mlle. La Taupe continues to report from San Francisco’s Die Walküre: “I neglected to comment about the photos of the fallen heroes, posted upon the jungle gym-like structures on the Walkuerenstein. To be noted as they are photos of fallen soldiers in recent American wars. Pictures are shown by courtesy of and with permission from…
Take a Wild Ride with a Valkyrie!! Yes, that’s what all the signs say around Old Baghdad-by-the-Bay…. So, fasten your seatbelts, y’all, it’s going to be a bumpy night! As it turned out, Die Walküre was an unexpectedly wonderful ride, marking the debut of someone who could be a very important new Brünnhilde, Nina Stemme.…
After the jump, a preview glimpse of Deborah Voigt and company in San Francisco Opera’s production of La fanciulla del West.
David Gockley has accepted Elina Garanca‘s withdrawal for “personal reasons” from San Francisco after discovering a “series of European concerts has been recently announced on Ms. Garanca’s website during the Werther performance schedule.” [La Cieca earlier reported this story as Gockley’s giving “the boot” to Garanca, which was not accurate.]
If you’re wondering why the relatively inexperienced George Steel was tapped for the demanding job of hauling the New York City Opera out of the basement — instead of front-runner Francesca Zambello, well, maybe this is why: Zambello, currently in London creating a joint Royal Opera and Royal Ballet production of Tchaikovsky’s comic rarity “The…
Excerpt from Madama Butterfly, 18 October 1974, San Francisco, CA. Cio-Cio-San: Renata Scotto; Suzuki: Judith Forst.
“Maria Callas arrives in San Francisco in 1958 with her toy poodle and 17 pieces of luggage,” reported the San Francisco Chronicle 50 years ago (November 24, 2008).