Cher Public

Ring around the Loop

Sondra Radvanovsky in a “Three Queens” concert and The Queen of Spades, plus three cycles of the Ring (senza Sondra) highlight Lyric Opera of Chicago’s 2019-2020 season.

Atonement

As readers of parterre box may know, I am not inclined to write sympathetically of Sondra Radvanovsky. I have found her voice tinny, ugly, and often unhinged and intractable. And in a recent review of Aida at the Met, I compared her unfavorably to Anna Netrebko.  Read more »

Better call Gaul

“Is this what they call a ‘textured’ performance?”

A gnawing sense of déja vu kept invading my thoughts during the second half of Bellini’s Norma Monday evening: I was reminded of the Met’s Opening Night two years ago when the audience got a new dark, dull Otello that didn’t at all improve on the production it was replacing.  Read more »

Paranorma activity

Shuffle_500“Due to Anna Netrebko’s recent decision not to add the title role in Bellini’s Norma to her repertory, the Metropolitan Opera and the Royal Opera, Covent Garden—where she was scheduled to debut the role—as well as the Vienna State Opera and Dallas Opera have announced several related cast changes.” The Met’s press office has been whirring this morning, and La Cieca will try to get you up to speed.  Read more »

Screen queen

This season’s Met Donizetti Tudor Trilogy concluded with Roberto Devereux, given its penultimate performance by HD transmission Saturday, April 16. It is good to see these works finally given here; they are too important, too crucial a part of the operatic repertory to have been ignored for as long as they have. 

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Queen for a D

Friday’s season premiere at the Met of Donizetti’s opera about the doomed Scottish queen proved surprisingly satisfying and a genuine success for Sondra Radvanovsky.

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Man of steel

“This throwback to the golden age of opera—superhuman singing greeted with frenzied ovations—was a function of a perfect storm of excitement.”

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Don’t axe me why

The Metropolitan Opera’s much vaunted so-called “Tudor Ring” of three royal operas by Donizetti got off to a bumpy start Saturday afternoon with a revival of Anna Bolena that stubbornly refused to cohere either musically or dramatically.

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