Fred Plotkin

Fred Plotkin appears in the following:

Discovering Xavier Montsalvatge

Friday, November 30, 2012

"When, about ten months ago, I began my Montsalvatge immersion, my approach was to listen to any music I could find," notes Fred Plotkin. "Then, recently, it came to my attention that an exemplary biography has just been published."

Read More

Comments [2]

Cloaks and Baggers

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Opera fans can be woefully sloppy, writes Fred Plotkin, taking their seats with rumpled coats and multiple shopping bags in tow. Theaters make matters worse by not providing adequate coat check facilities.

Read More

Comments [23]

Berenice Has Her Moment

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Berenice is suddenly everywhere, writes Fred Plotkin. "In the past week I have encountered her in London, at Carnegie Hall and, Tuesday night she was at the Metropolitan Opera."

Read More

Comments [2]

Planet Opera London: Discovering Handel and his Times

Friday, November 16, 2012

A visit to the Handel House Museum, the composer's former home in London, inspires blogger Fred Plotkin to consider his place in the operatic canon. 

Read More

Comments [2]

Beethoven and Michelangelo: Colossal Utopianism

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

"Michelangelo is to art what Beethoven is to music," writes Fred Plotkin. "Beethoven’s music is so life-affirming and we get a sense of the greatness of human potential in his music and in Michelangelo’s art."

Read More

Comments [6]

The Problem with Opera in English

Saturday, November 10, 2012

"Opera in English is particular, and often challenging, because our vowels are not always beautiful and unfriendly consonants tend to intrude," writes Operavore blogger Fred Plotkin.

Read More

Comments [7]

Only the Best

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

"The idea of optimism becomes difficult in difficult times," writes Fred Plotkin. "And yet it is a renewable tonic, one that is not based on naiveté as much as belief."

Read More

Comments [3]

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.

Read More

Comment

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.

Read More

Comments [3]

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

Read More

Comment

My Father’s an Opera Singer, and So Am I

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

If your father is famous or accomplished in his field of endeavor, it creates particular difficulties in forging your own path in the same profession. Blogger Fred Plotkin considers some famed singing families.

Read More

Comments [1]

Planet Opera: In Valencia, Spain, the Arts Still Matter

Friday, October 19, 2012

Despite the enormous economic crisis that's crippling Spain, Valencia, its third-largest city, remains a destination for opera. Blogger Fred Plotkin was just there and shares his impressions.

Read More

Comments [6]

The Song of the Ancient Soprano

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

"There are a still some very old singers who walk among us, heads only slightly bowed, and seem like messengers from that lost world of opera in the 1920s and 1930s," writes Fred Plotkin. "They actually did know Puccini."

Read More

Comments [5]

Mirella Freni: La Prudentissima

Friday, October 12, 2012

For almost her entire life, when Mirella Freni sang, all people could do was stop and listen. Fred Plotkin considers why.

Read More

Comments [2]

Giuseppe Verdi, Lost and Found

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

At the time that Verdi's daughter was born, the composer was deep into the composition of Il Trovatore, his strange and compelling story about babies who are switched, abandoned, even burned in a fire.

Read More

Comments [2]

When Singers Seem to Matter Less

Thursday, October 04, 2012

"While there are some singers who still are engaged by opera companies and presented as stars whom audiences flock to see, there are fewer of these all the time," writes Fred Plotkin.

Read More

Comments [16]

Planet Opera: Cincinnati Balances Tradition with Innovation

Tuesday, October 02, 2012

This hilly, leafy city above the Ohio River grew in the 19th century with waves of German immigrants who brought values of hard work, love of music and of hearty food, writes Fred Plotkin.

Read More

Comments [5]

Smoking at the Opera

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Smoking used to be commonplace among opera singers, as it was the general public. These days, there remain a few hold-outs, despite its obvious dangers. Fred Plotkin considers the practice.

Read More

Comments [7]

Why it's Time to Reclaim the Overture

Monday, September 24, 2012

"More than a few stage directors seem to think that the overture is theirs to play with, creating stage business that happens while the overture is being performed," complains Fred Plotkin.

Read More

Comments [5]

What Audiences Can Bring to an Opera Performance

Friday, September 21, 2012

In tough financial times, "we, as audiences, need to express faith and solidarity with our opera companies, encouraging them to be daring and creative and supporting them in their efforts," writes Fred Plotkin.

Read More

Comments [4]