Three Acts, Not Nine Innings: Opera Goes to the Stadium

Saturday, September 03, 2011

In Verona, Italy, massive opera productions take place every summer in a Roman coliseum. In San Francisco and Washington, DC, operas will be simulcast on ballpark jumbotrons. Can stadiums and ballparks bring opera back to its populist roots?

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Four Ways of Performing a Mad Scene

Saturday, September 03, 2011

Blogger Olivia Giovetti asks four sopranos what it's like to sing the famous mad scene from Lucia di Lammermoor. Get a taste for crazy in advance of the Met's HD screening of the work on Sunday.

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Three Years After Debut, Opera Omnia Returns to the Stage

Friday, September 02, 2011

Olivia Giovetti reviews Opera Omnia's sophomore effort, a punk-meets-Pulcinella staging of Francesco Cavalli's Giasone, now playing in the intimate space of (Le) Poisson Rouge through September 7.

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Anti-Israel Protest Disrupts BBC Proms Concert in London

Thursday, September 01, 2011

Protesters disrupted a performance Thursday by the Israel Philharmonic and violinist Gil Shaham as part of the BBC Proms, one of Britain’s most venerable concert series.

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In Helsinki's Sleek New Concert Hall, Clarity Reigns

Thursday, September 01, 2011

After a decade-long construction process and a cost of $271 million, the Helsinki Music Center opened Wednesday evening. WQXR's Graham Parker writes that, while not perfect, it "raises the bar on design, purpose and relevance."

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Where are Italy’s Opera Singers? Part III

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The connective thread to the great Italian singers of the past is frayed, writes Fred Plotkin. "I wish Italians would come to feel not only proud of their cultural heritage but actively protective of it and expert in it," he writes.

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When Classical Music Takes Center Court

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

How was it that Gershwin and Schoenberg came to enjoy a fiercely-fought tennis match each week? Why was Prokofiev so interested in the game? As the U.S. Open heats up, host Midge Woolsey considers the links.

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The Top 10 Dysfunctional Families in Opera

Monday, August 29, 2011

Think the family in Our Idiot Brother is slightly screwball? They have nothing on some of opera's divinest dysfunctional dynasties. Read Olivia Giovetti's top 10 picks and discuss!

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Where Are Italy's Opera Singers? Part II

Monday, August 29, 2011

One of the problems in the Italian opera world today is the fact that singers have been marginalized and cannot necessarily forge careers in the way Italian conductors do. Yet blogger Fred Plotkin looks at a few standouts.

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Tenor Salvatore Licitra Injured in Motorbike Accident in Sicily

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Salvatore Licitra, one of the leading tenors on the international opera scene, is hospitalized in critical condition in hospital near Modica, Sicily from injuries sustained in a traffic accident on a Vespa on Sunday.

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At Mostly Mozart, a Grand (Albeit Truncated) Finale

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Reviewing the Mostly Mozart Festival's closing performance, Olivia Giovetti writes, "There was a small sense of finality; should the city be wiped off the face of the earth this weekend, the last live music some New Yorkers will have heard would be Schubert, Stravinsky and Mozart."

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A Night in at the Opera (At Home)

Thursday, August 25, 2011

WQX-Aria blogger Olivia Giovetti highlights ten new opera on DVD releases, perfect for a night in and a bowl of popcorn.

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Where Are Italy’s Opera Singers? Part I

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Who are the great Italian opera singers of contemporary times? In the first of a three part series, Fred Plotkin takes us on a virtual tour  of the great Italian singers of recent past and present, introducing us to many you should know.

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Top 10 Underrated Puccini Arias

Monday, August 22, 2011

Puccini's La Rondine will be featured this Tuesday at the Metropolitan Opera's Summer HD Festival. This got us thinking. Puccini wrote some of the standard-est of standard canon arias. But what are his lesser-known, underrated arias? Olivia Giovetti names her Top 10.

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Listening Room: Jussi Björling

Monday, August 22, 2011

Many consider tenor Jussi Björling to be one of the greats of the "old Met". Find out why Fred Plotkin considers him to be one of his great childhood influences in this Listening Room profile.

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When Opera Goes Pop

Sunday, August 21, 2011

WQX-Aria blogger Olivia Giovetti continues her exploration of opera in pop culture with a top 10 roundup of operatic references in non-operatic music. Read on for her picks and be sure to submit your own.

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A Bumper Crop of Italian Maestros: Part II

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Why do we have so many fine Italian conductors today? Considering names like Chailly, Luisi, Armiliato and Noseda, blogger Fred Plotkin notes, "I believe that Italy continues to produce outstanding musicians in families that are keepers of the musical flame."

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'Spargi' Showdown: Seven Top Singers Tackle Legendary Aria

Thursday, August 18, 2011

WQX-Aria blogger Olivia Giovetti asks what it means when people say one singer "owns" a role or an aria, and leaves you the reader to answer the question, "Who sang it best?"

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Daniel Barenboim Leads Korean Border Concert, Ponders Cairo

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

A day after Argentine-Israeli conductor Daniel Barenboim led his West-Eastern Divan Orchestra in a concert at the borders of North and South Korea, he is now hoping to bring the ensemble to Cairo's Tahrir Square.

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A Bumper Crop of Italian Maestros: Part I

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Italian conductors have been very important in the pit at the Metropolitan Opera, writes blogger Fred Plotkin. "In the coming season, of the 22 conductors on the roster, there are six Italians and two more with Italian roots."

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