Magnificent Maestros: Leif Segerstam

Friday, July 22, 2011

The term maestro has two meanings. It is a conductor, of course, but it also means teacher. To some degree, every conductor is also a teacher, but some few of them so fully embrace pedagogy that it seems to dwarf their other achievements. A few maestros are also composers. Mahler and Leonard Bernstein both belong in this category, as did Mendelssohn in his short life.

Read More

Comments [3]

You Can Do That on Television

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Many Americans who have never set foot in an opera house know popular arias through TV shows like Seinfeld, Saturday Night Live, The Simpsons and Gilligan’s Island. Read about the top ten operatic references on TV and share your own favorites.

Read More

Comments [19]

Should Opera Companies Feature More Ballet?

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Many of the world's great opera companies double as ballet companies, including those in London, Paris and Russia. But has anyone lately mentioned the Metropolitan Opera Ballet? On WQX-Aria, blogger Fred Plotkin has a proposal for the Met.

Read More

Comments [11]

Young Singers Soar in Puccini's La Rondine

Monday, July 18, 2011

"One could make a full-time (and fulfilling) career out of just seeing student and young artist performances in the New York metro area," writes WQX-Aria blogger Olivia Giovetti, who reviews one such performance given this weekend.

Read More

Comments [4]

When Musical Meets Opera

Friday, July 15, 2011

With the Glimmerglass Festival's production of Annie Get Your Gun opening this weekend, WQX-Aria blogger Olivia Giovetti looks at the tradition of performing musicals in the opera house.

Read More

Comments [12]

Shakespeare and Opera: The Strange But True Story of Verdi's King Lear

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Opera fans know that Verdi wrote three brilliant operas based on Shakespeare: Macbeth, Otello and Falstaff. And then there is the great Shakespeare opera that Verdi struggled to create, but did not: Il Re Lear. Here's why.

Read More

Comments [8]

What Difference Does a Cast Make?

Thursday, July 14, 2011

"In the course of a highly concentrated twelve days, the Lincoln Center Festival’s A Magic Flute illustrates what happens over the course of a season or multiple years in houses such as the Met," writes WQX-Aria blogger Olivia Giovetti: "How do different artists shape and reshape the art?"

Read More

Comments [1]

With a Plan in Place, Can City Opera Follow Through?

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

New York City Opera lays out a promising season divorced from Lincoln Center, writes WQX-Aria blogger Olivia Giovetti. But can they also reach a labor negotiation to help get the struggling company back on its feet?

Read More

Comments [3]

Casting Your Fantasy Opera Production

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

On WQX-Aria Fred Plotkin reports on the Caramoor revival of Rossini's William Tell and asks: "What opera has been forgotten, ignored or badly served that you would present in five years?"

Read More

Comments [11]

Monday in the Park with the Met

Monday, July 11, 2011

As the Met revisits its new tradition of summer recital series, WQX-Aria blogger Olivia Giovetti asks whether these summer offerings may be better than full-length operas.

Read More

Comments [1]

Vertical Player Repertory Takes 'La Calisto' to the Banks of the Gowanus Canal

Saturday, July 09, 2011

WQX-Aria Blogger Olivia Giovetti previews Vertical Player Repertory's production of La Calisto, a 17th-century Cavalli gem that's transported to an industrial area of Brooklyn.

Read More

Comment

A 'Master Class' Worth Auditing: Tyne Daly Excels as Maria Callas

Friday, July 08, 2011

On WQX-Aria, Fred Plotkin reports on the revival of the Terrence McNally play "Master Class." "Daly fully stakes her claim as heir to a role that has prismatically brought forth distinct traits of Callas with each actress who plays her."

Read More

Comments [3]

A Holy and Immediate 'Flute' from Peter Brook

Thursday, July 07, 2011

WQX-Aria blogger Olivia Giovetti reviews the radically reimagined, 90-minute version of Mozart's The Magic Flute, now playing at the Lincoln Center Festival.

Read More

Comments [2]

When is Sexual Orientation Relevant to Opera?

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

In light of New York's legalization of gay marriage and Opera North's operatic meltdown, WQX-Aria blogger Olivia Giovetti examines the crossroads of sexual politics and classical music through both composers and source materials.

Read More

Comments [12]

Do 'Tell'

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

You may know the famous William Tell Overture but what about the opera it introduces? WQX-Aria blogger Fred Plotkin considers why it is often referred to as Rossini’s masterpiece.

Read More

Comments [4]

Arts Funding and Apple Pie

Saturday, July 02, 2011

Kansas recently became the nation's first state without an arts agency. On WQX-Aria, Fred Plotkin considers the implications of that dubious distinction, and why "the arts will be our legacy as a civilization long after we forget who our politicians were."

Read More

Comments [7]

Classical Fuel for Your Cardio Fire

Friday, July 01, 2011

Whether you're training for a triathlon or battling it out with the elliptical trainer at your gym, classical music can play the role of energizer and motivator. WQX-Aria blogger Olivia Giovetti curates an operatic playlist for the cardio-minded.

Read More

Comments [5]

Lincoln Center's Eastern Promises

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Should Lincoln Center—a hot spot for socially- and politically-conscious works—be working with a culturally repressive government? WQX-Aria blogger Olivia Giovetti examines both sides of the argument around a new consulting project with the city of Tianjin.

Read More

Comments [1]

In Memoriam: Alice Playten

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Alice Plotkin (August 28, 1947-June 25, 2011), my beloved cousin, died this past weekend in New York, the city of her birth and the place where she most thrived.

Read More

Comments [20]

From Pop Star to Opera Star

Monday, June 27, 2011

As Rufus Wainwright readies to perform with New York City Opera tonight, WQX-Aria blogger Olivia Giovetti writes "with opera opening up musically to a wider public, mirroring in a way the de-privatization of the art form in 17th-century Venice, the possibilities on offer are tantalizing."

Read More

Comments [3]