Opera Suggestions

Discussion in 'Off The Beaten Track' started by agalisgv, Oct 3, 2009.

  1. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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    Patti Smiths Top Five Operas

    Scroll for the video.

    I'm sure that many people who ask G-d why they have to suffer are as delusional as Tosca.
  2. reckless

    reckless Well-Known Member

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    I woke up at 5 a.m. to watch the live-stream of the Operalia competition from Beijing. American soprano Janai Brugger swept all the women's awards -- opera, zarzuela, and the audience award. The men's awards were heavily divided, with first and second place in the opera category ties. Mongolian baritone Amartuvshin and American counter-tenor Anthony Roth Costanzo shared the top prize in the opera repertoire.

    Brugger is amazing. She won the Met competition earlier in the year and I saw her a few weeks ago as Musetta in La Boheme, where she absolutely stole the show. She has a tremendous future.

    Amartuvshin has an incredible voice. I think he needs to work a little more at conveying the emotion of a piece, but I'm still very surprised by the tie.

    It's available for rewatching here
  3. SaSherka

    SaSherka New Member

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    reckless, 5 a.m. wow! I only watched the live awards as I couldn't wake up to watch the final live. I only heard Costanzo live twice before, so I am really excited he won (will watch the broadcast later). I hope to catch that LA Opera's La Boheme radio broadcast with Janai on June 23 (will post the link later). Curious to see where she goes after LA Opera young artist program.
  4. reckless

    reckless Well-Known Member

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    I'll admit that I had not planned on waking that early. I just happened to wake up and remembered that it was streaming. On a side note, I laughed yesterday when your congratulatory tweet showed up in my twitter stream.

    I'm also very interested in seeing where Janai Brugger goes from here. There are only a few young actors and singers that I've seen who have made me really think "this person will be a huge success." After seeing her Musetta, I was left with that impression of Janai. We will definitely miss her in LA.
  5. SaSherka

    SaSherka New Member

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    Busted! Haha! Twitter works in mysterious ways!
    I watched almost the whole broadcast and In addition to top winners, I liked the Russian mezzos.
  6. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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  7. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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    I was in San Francisco this weekend, and I heard Ferruccio Furlanetto as Atilla. That he was great was no surprise, but a lot of people were surprised by Quinn Kelsey, the Ezio. I wasn't, because he was a :kickass: Amonasro in Vancouver Opera's "Aida" a couple of months ago, but I still don't know why he's not more well known.

    The big surprise for me was "The Magic Flute." I only went to hear Alek Shrader, the tenor who sang "A mes amis" in the 2007 Metropolitan Opera Council Auditions, which was part of the documentary "The Audition" -- I wanted to hear what he sounded like live, from the back row. (Lovely voice.)

    OperaVision = :rockstar: In the Balcony, for a subset of performances per opera, they drop two screens from the ceiling and show the opera through cameras. It's like watching a Met HD, albeit on a smaller screen, but hearing it live, the best of both worlds plus you still can always watch the stage. Plus the camera caught the entrance of the :swoon: conductor, Rory Macdonald. (Without OV, from the Balcony he looks like an ant, if you can see him at all.) For this opera, it was always better to keep watching the stage, because of the way the projections blended into each other.

    The Queen of the Night, Albina Shagimuratova, was the vocal star, but the best part of the opera were the sets and costumes by painter/sculptor Jun Kaneko, and realized by two video artists. The video gives a better sense of the singers, but the photos give a better sense of the production.

    The good news is that it's a co-production with four other companies, and two will present it next season:

    Opera Carolina (January 19, 24, 27 2013) -- Belk Theater
    Opera Omaha (February 22, 24 2013) -- Orpheum Theater

    I can't find when Washington National Opera (Kennedy Center) and Lyric Opera of Kansas City plan to show it, but it's worth seeing when they do. It doesn't matter who sings it.
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2012
  8. emason

    emason Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the report. I've made it to Chicago for the opera. Next on my wish list is San Francisco.
  9. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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    I'm meeting some friends in Dallas for a weekend of "Moby Dick" and the Bellini "The Capulets and the Montagues" (with Joyce diDonato as Romeo) next fall. (They want to see Ben Heppner as Ahab; I'd rather have waited for Jay Hunter Morris.)

    The SFO season is broken in two: the longer fall season with five-six operas, and then the shorter June-July with three after the SF Ballet season. Their summer clashes with the NY ballet season, and I would avoid the opera on Pride weekend: I wouldn't do it again if Melchior, Leider, and Schorr rose from the dead to sing The Ring.

    I'm considering flying into Oakland: last Friday, due to fog SFO was down to one runway, and my 3:15pm flight took off well after we were supposed to have landed, and I missed "Nixon in China."
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2012
  10. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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  11. emason

    emason Well-Known Member

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    Well, you just made my day.
  12. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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  13. SaSherka

    SaSherka New Member

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    I am going to Bel Canto at Caramoor for the first time. This Saturday is Rossini's Ciro in Babilonia with Ewa Podleś and then possibly Bellini's I Capuleti e i Montecchi in 2 weeks. http://www.caramoor.org/festival/opera
    I drove an extra mile to get a CD from my library network and then found the whole thing on Spotify... Already heard Rossini borrowing pieces from himself...
  14. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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    Reports, we want reports! (I've never been to Caramoor.)

    The weekend "Einstein at the Beach" is playing in Berkeley, there are no performances of The Montagues and the Capulets at San Francisco Opera, i.e., no JDD :mad:

    (Lohengrin, Schloengrin...)
  15. SaSherka

    SaSherka New Member

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    Oh, right, reports...
    Here you go ;)
    NY Times
    WSJ
    Detailed blog post from OperaTeen

    I went to hear Ms. Podleś as I was impressed hearing her in Rossini's Tancredi at Opera Boston almost 3 years ago, but I was also very impressed with the tenor, Michael Spyres! He almost stole the show with his "mad" aria. Caramoor felt like a mini-version of Tanglewood, scenery-wise, but I also really liked the pre-opera programming, with 2 concerts by Caramoor's young artists as well as an insightful lecture.

    I chose to skip I Capuleti e i Montecchi with Aldrich & Gutierrez this past weekend, as Caramoor isn't as easy to get to for a day.

    PS, kwanfan, what do you mean no JDD at SFO? The performances are in the Fall and she's still on the cast list??
  16. emason

    emason Well-Known Member

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    OK, opera fans, Met tickets are on sale. I am going to:

    Les Troyens Monday 12/17
    Parsifal on Feb. 27
    Francesca da Rimini March 12
    Giulio Cesare April 30

    I'm saving the rest of my budget for some possible HD broadcasts.

    Anyone else here going to anything?
  17. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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    Met tickets go on sale in Canada on 22 August to Met members, but two years ago, our local theater also sold them to SCENE members (the Cineplex affiliate program) in advance, important because for the last few years, all but the first five rows of the live showings have been sold out the day tickets go on sale, and the Encores months in advance. I'm hoping the same is true this year, since the sound system in the Cineplex theater is so much better than at the Park theater (where I can always get a same-day ticket).

    I'm planning to try to see all of them except "Elisir d'Amore," which annoys me. I'd skip "Rigoletto," but the production sounds interesting.
  18. emason

    emason Well-Known Member

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    Rigoletto annoys me. I find Gilda the most useless woman in all of opera and don't want to waste an evening with her.
  19. SaSherka

    SaSherka New Member

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    Hello-hello!
    Got tickets to Maria Stuarda (1/4), Les Troyens (1/5) and Parsifal (3/2). Will also get Dialogues a bit later and will see about La Clemenza, Francesca, Rigoletto (just for Damrau & Beczala), Giulio Cesare and anything else if schedule allows. Will most likely end up at all HDs one way or another.

    PS I am going to JDD's recital at Carnegie Hall and to the dual Fleming/Graham recital in Boston.
  20. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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    :swoon:
  21. reckless

    reckless Well-Known Member

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    I wanted to get tickets for the Fleming/Graham recital in Los Angeles, but my mom didn't order them with her LA Philharmonic subscription and, by the time they were available to LA Opera subscribers, there weren't enough seats left. I'm hoping I can find some tickets available online in the weeks leading up to the recital.

    ETA: I forgot to mention that I'm seeing Placido Domingo's recital at the Hollywood Bowl on Sunday. I can't wait for that.
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2012
  22. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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  23. reckless

    reckless Well-Known Member

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    I just got home from the Hollywood Bowl, where the LA Philharmonic performed with Placido Domingo and Ana Maria Martinez. It was a great night of music, but also one of the most bizarre concert programs I've ever witnessed.

    Ostensibly, this was the closing event of a week-long festival of music from across the Americas. However, it really seemed like they said, "It's Placido Domingo. He can do whatever the hell he wants." So that's kind of how the program was.

    It started with the overture from The Barber of Seville by the Philharmonic followed by Domingo and Martinez singing several opera arias and duets. (I forget exactly what, but they included some Wagner and Verdi who, last time I checked, were not exactly from the Americas.) Then they switched to American musicals, beginning with the LA Philharmonic doing the overture to Candide, followed by "I Could Have Danced All Night" (Martinez), "Some Enchanted Evening" (Domingo), "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" (Martinez), and then a duet between the world's oldest Tony and Maria on "Tonight." After that, the program switched to several Zarzuela pieces, including two from Maravilla, and then closed with a series of somewhat random Spanish-language songs, including Domingo having the audience sing along with him to "Besame Mucho" and "Granada," and a duet that had a brief interlude where Domingo and Martinez did a short tango.

    it was a great. albeit somewhat odd, concert. The singers were great and it is amazing at how strong Domingo's voice remains at his age. I get to see him perform again next month in I Due Foscari.
  24. SaSherka

    SaSherka New Member

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    You got me curious, so I looked up this LA Times review.
    A few things have already popped up on YouTube, like PD's Granada & PD+AMM's duet, Jazzed up Besame Mucho, AMM's crazily cadenza-ed Una Voce Poco Fa (Verrry impressed, even though I self-brainwashed to adore JDD's Rosina =))
    I am usually hesitant about open-air concerts due to popular programming issues, but we had a very good Boston Lyric Opera collaboration here in Boston a couple weeks ago.

    PS. Has the Met season started? ;)
  25. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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  26. SaSherka

    SaSherka New Member

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    You can refresh a number of times and get a new result ;)
  27. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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    "Throw your panties up in the air -- it's Jonas Kaufmann!"

    Where's Marge_Simpson?
  28. Marge_Simpson

    Marge_Simpson Well-Known Member

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    I'm here. Why are you asking about my panties?! :lol:
  29. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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    Have you seen Jonas Kaufmann? :lol:
  30. emason

    emason Well-Known Member

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    My least favorite opera composer ever - Wagner. Did I buy a ticket to next season's Parsifal? You betcha; for Kaufmann I am putting aside my dislike of Wagner.
  31. BlueRidge

    BlueRidge AYS's snark-sponge

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    Live in HD tix went on sale to the general public today at 10 a.m. (aka folks who don't have an extra $150 for the Met) so I got my tix.

    The rich had already bought all the tix at the D.C. location.

    So its out to the wasteland that is Northern Virginia for me.

    For six shows:
    Otello
    La Clemenza Di Tito
    Aida
    Les Troyens
    Rigoletto
    Guilio Cesare
  32. SaSherka

    SaSherka New Member

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    Yep, same story with the only Boston location. It's the same every year, so I wasn't even surprised, plus the quality is better in the newer suburban theaters.
    I may have to wait for last-minute HD tickets for myself as I overspent on the Met (2 are HD Saturdays anyway), Celebrity Series (Fleming/Graham; Jurowski w/LPO and Kissin), Boston Symphony opening night and Richard Tucker Gala in NYC and I have yet to buy my JDD@Carnegie ticket. Yep, and I was in a full-blown planning mode for either Munich or San Fran's performances of JDD's Capuleti/Montecchi tonight. Please, stop me :lol:
  33. BlueRidge

    BlueRidge AYS's snark-sponge

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    My mother liked to say, "You only go this way once, you might as well make the most of it!" :lol:
  34. BlueRidge

    BlueRidge AYS's snark-sponge

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    I saw the Washington Opera's Don Giovanni last night!

    I'm about the same with opera as I am with skating so no detailed expert report from me. :lol:

    I liked it. I thought the singing was good all the way around. I thought Ildar Abdrazakov was very good as Don Giovanni, definitely the most outstanding of the cast members. The Leporello was fine, but Luca Pisaroni was so good in the Met version last year that by comparison it was pretty dull.

    Of the sopranos, I liked Zerlina Veronica Cangemi the best. Barbara Frittoli was Donna Elvira here as with the Met. I was interested to hear her live as I've liked her in the Live in HD programs I've seen but I was not that impressed with her voice. She's got the portrayal down though so her performance was convincing. The costume she wore through much of it was kind of :confused::rofl: so I enjoyed that to; it was some sort of skin tight pants with a bodice and a flowing sort of coat/cape. With high heels, that's what made it. :lol:

    The production was much better than the Met's claustrophobic sets from last season. It appeared to be set in the 20th Century though some of the costumes didn't really fit with the time period. I always like that. :lol: There were a lot of changes of scenery and extras on stage, and dancing and stuff that added a lot to it.

    The one thing I liked least was the orchestra. I don't really know what kind of rep the Washington Opera Orchestra has but I was underwhelmed by it. I'll be interested to see how they sound next week for Anna Bolena.

    In any case, I had not been to a live opera since the 1980s! And I got a cheap 2nd tier seat which was really excellent. I really enjoyed going. :rollin:
  35. emason

    emason Well-Known Member

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    Frittoli was absolutely ghastly, a major disappointment, the night I went to DG at the Met last season. I certainly won't be rushing out to buy a ticket to anything else she is in anytime soon.
  36. Marge_Simpson

    Marge_Simpson Well-Known Member

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    I am no opera fan (although I'm certainly susceptible to peer pressure ;)) but if you would like to meet up for dinner afterward, please let me know. :)
  37. LadyNit

    LadyNit moving right along Staff Member

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    I'm looking forward to Seattle Opera's Fidelio. I lurrrrrve that opera. :swoon:
  38. BYTCH

    BYTCH Well-Known Member

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    I didn't realize there was an opera thread!

    My biker buddy is up here at the trailer, helping close up for the season. Finding something for us to watch together on TV was a challenge--I refuse to watch football, hockey, or baseball; he won't watch Project Runway, Chelsea Handler, or The Closer.

    We compromised and watched the Met's production of Das Rheingold Nothing like Wagnerian opera, he thought it was great. :rofl:

    The subtitles made it possible, he really got into brudderschaft, and all the bass parts.
  39. SaSherka

    SaSherka New Member

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    I will also be in NYC the weekend before for the Richard Tucker Gala at the Avery Fisher Hall and will surely need to eat at some point! Will def try to peer-pressure you to see JDD at Carnegie Hall w/ me! ;)

    In other opera news, went to the concert performance of Gershwin's Porgy & Bess with the Boston Symphony Orchestra on Friday. They miked everyone for the spoken parts and seems like the mics were still on for some/all of the singing parts. The overall result was that the singers, chorus and orchestra sounded evenly great, but I felt cheated as I didn't know what sound to believe.
    Not my favorite music and a sizable number of attendees left at intermission, but I am still glad I went.
  40. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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    Marge_Simpson, definitely go to hear JDD!

    I love Fidelio, too. I'm really looking forward to hearing Marcy Stonikas (Sunday matinee only) after her :kickass: Turandot.
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2012