Tea and Bagels with Conductor Valery Gergiev

Friday, November 02, 2012

The Russian maestro speaks with Fred Plotkin about a range of topics, including concert hall construction in St. Petersburg, Russia, the stigma around Shostakovich and the benefits of constant touring.

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Sandy Washes Classical Label Out of New Offices

Thursday, November 01, 2012

Superstorm Sandy has badly hobbled New Amsterdam – a nonprofit label home to a younger generation of composers and performers – destroying much of its CD inventory and equipment.

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Top Three Moments for Verdi's Lady Macbeth

Thursday, November 01, 2012

Verdi's musical transformation of Shakespeare's Macbeth shines the spotlight so brightly on his ruthless and ambitious wife that perhaps the opera should be renamed in her honor.

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Sandy Meets The Tempest: The Met Opera Reopens

Thursday, November 01, 2012

After cancelling performances for two days, the Met returned Wednesday with – ironically – a scheduled performance of The Tempest, an opera based on Shakespeare by Thomas Adès.

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Broadway Lights go up in Post-Sandy NYC

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The lights went up again on Broadway Wednesday for the first time since superstorm Sandy hit New York, as entertainers headed back to work in a city still wracked by power-outages and a suspended subway system.

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A Mystical Madwoman as Unlikely Opera Heroine

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Women and madness is a primal operatic theme, heard in everything from Monteverdi’s Arianna to Donizetti’s Lucia and on to Régine Saint Laurent, the overwrought title character in Rufus Wainwright’s Prima Donna.

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Floating Concert Hall Battered But Secure After Hurricane

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Bargemusic, the floating concert hall moored near the Brooklyn Bridge in Dumbo, appears to have sustained only minimal damage during the storm’s relentless pounding.

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When Opera Characters Cast Their Spell

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Spells, potions, black cats, tarot cards and incantations are the stuff of great opera plots. Fred Plotkin considers some of the great scary characters in the opera canon.

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How the Mariinsky Orchestra Beat Hurricane Sandy

Monday, October 29, 2012

Hurricane Sandy is not the only thing barreling through the East Coast this week. The Mariinsky Orchestra has been on a breathless tour that's audacious even by the company's own go-for-broke standards.

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Hurricane Sandy Forces Closures for Museums, Theaters

Monday, October 29, 2012

Hurricane Sandy has forced many cultural institutions in the tri-state region to close their doors Monday.

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Hans Werner Henze: The Last Interview?

Sunday, October 28, 2012

"Nobody should be surprised that composer Hans Werner Henze was at the premiere of a new work days before he died on Oct. 27 in Dresden," writes blogger David Patrick Stearns. "He was unstoppable."

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Concert Cancellations Due to Hurricane Sandy

Sunday, October 28, 2012

While most concerts have resumed, Carnegie Hall remains shuttered. Here is an updated list of shows that have been cancelled or postponed.

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Detroit, San Francisco Symphonies Root, Root, Root for the Home Team

Saturday, October 27, 2012

While the Giants and Tigers battle it out on the ball field, the orchestras from their respective cities are engaged in their own (online) rivalry.

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German Composer Hans Werner Henze Dies at 86

Saturday, October 27, 2012

German composer Hans Werner Henze, whose prolific and wide-ranging work included a wealth of operas and 10 symphonies, died Saturday.

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Master Class: Thomas Allen on Making Mozart's Music Sing

Friday, October 26, 2012

Baritone Thomas Allen emphasizes how both the music of Mozart and the words of da Ponte express a duality that must be captured by singers as both musicians and actors, writes Fred Plotkin

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Top Five Political Satires in Opera

Friday, October 26, 2012

"Saturday Night Live" and Comedy Central don’t have a monopoly on political satire. Commentary on the state of government has been showing up in for centuries in operas by Monteverdi to John Adams.

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American Ballet Theater to Return to Lincoln Center

Thursday, October 25, 2012

The American Ballet Theater said on Thursday that it has signed a three-year contract to perform at the David H. Koch Theater, ending the company's 15-year perch at New York City Center.

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Three Reasons Why Wagner’s Rienzi is Rarely Performed

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Wagner’s Rienzi is an opera that hardly ever gets produced by major companies. On this edition of Opera in Brief, F. Paul Driscoll names its challenges.

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Alan Gilbert Renews Contract with New York Philharmonic

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Conductor Alan Gilbert has extended his contract with the New York Philharmonic, through the 2016-2017 season. He discusses his plans with Jeff Spurgeon.

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Review: The Met's Tempest Blows Hot and Cold

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Thomas Adès’ operatic adaptation of Shakespeare’s The Tempest arrived at the Metropolitan Opera on Tuesday. David Patrick Stearns writes that it has "only fitful musical brilliance and many theatrical deficits."

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