In recent years, a growing cadre of young opera singers with thrilling voices, charisma, and musical smarts to match has moved on the fast track to stardom. All this month on WQXR, we're putting the spotlight on these singers, exploring their work through recordings and conversations. We're also looking at the fall season's noteworthy productions – at the Met, New York City Opera and the numerous "indie" opera companies that dot New York’s musical landscape.

Recently in Operatic October

From the Vaults: George Jellinek with Beverly Sills

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

As Operatic October continues, we revisit a classic episode of The Vocal Scene featuring Beverly Sills. In this 1992 program, the former New York City Opera director and soprano revisits her memorable recordings.

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Maestros at the Met

Monday, October 25, 2010

As part of our series Operatic October, Symphony Hall this week considers the work and style of the conductors at the Metropolitan Opera this season. We begin tonight with James Levine.

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For Racette, Puccini Heroines and Berlin Cabaret

Monday, October 25, 2010

One of today's most respected Puccini sopranos, Patricia Racette tells Midge Woolsey about her ecclectic career that spans verismo to cabaret. And she reveals why she identifies with "complicated, conflicted" characters.

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Reconsidering Leonard Bernstein's A Quiet Place

Sunday, October 24, 2010

A Quiet Place, Leonard Bernstein’s 1983 opera about marriage and family dysfunction is finally getting its New York premiere. But will audiences come around to its themes?

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Cecilia Bartoli's Sospiri

Saturday, October 23, 2010

The discussion continues on Sospiri, Cecilia Bartoli's collection of operatic scenes and arias extending from Handel to Fauré. Listen to an excerpt from our Album of the Week and tell us what you think.

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Operatic Movies

Saturday, October 23, 2010

On tonight's Movies on the Radio, host David Garland presents the opera scene from Citizen Kane, Bugs Bunny singing What's Opera, Doc?, plus opera-influenced scores from Batman, The Fly and other films.

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Top Five Joan Sutherland Roles

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Though she succeeded in roles as diverse as Turandot and Olympia in Les Contes d’Hoffmann, there are certain roles that are synonymous with the late Joan Sutherland. Here are her top five operatic roles.

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Opera's Weighty Debate: Does Size Really Matter?

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

In the age of HD broadcasts, svelte opera singers are increasingly commonplace. But Midge Woolsey wonders whether size really matters. And if so, should it matter more than vocal ability?

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From the Vaults: George Jellinek with Risë Stevens

Monday, October 18, 2010

In this 1983 appearance on The Vocal Scene, the great mezzo-soprano Risë Stevens talks with George Jellinek about her unlikely rise to fame, her major roles, and some of her classic recordings.

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Elīna Garanča's Habanera

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Our Album of the Week features the Latvian mezzo-soprano Elīna Garanča, best known for her recent Metropolitan Opera appearances as Carmen. Read more about "Habanera," which features a variety of gypsy roles from opera, operetta and song.

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Bali Comes to Brooklyn

Thursday, October 14, 2010

On Friday, October 15 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m, Q2 spotlights the fertile, inclusive and high-octane music-making of composer Evan Ziporyn, whose opera, A House in Bali, receives its New York premiere this week at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. For 3 continuous hours, enjoy full sonic immersion in Zipoyrn's diverse music worlds with recordings ranging from the percussion virtuosity of  So Percussion to live performances by Zyporyn's Gamelan Galak Tika from the 2010 Bang on a Can Marathon.

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Joan Sutherland Sings the Mad Scene from Lucia

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Get a free download of Joan Sutherland singing the "Mad Scene" from Lucia di Lammermoor. Plus, share your reflections and stories.

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Music World Pays Tribute to Famed Soprano Joan Sutherland

Monday, October 11, 2010

Over a career that spanned more than 40 years, Joan Sutherland is being remembered as one of the last singers who truly earned the title prima donna. Share your stories and reflections about Dame Sutherland and her career.

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René Jacobs: The Magic Flute

Thursday, October 07, 2010

Conductor René Jacobs uses scholarship, imagination and period instruments for Mozart's last opera. But is his approach too unconventional? Listen to our Album of the Week, get a free download, and tell us what you think.

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From the Vaults: Jussi Björling and Company

Thursday, October 07, 2010

In this 1991 episode of The Vocal Scene, the late host George Jellinek pays tribute to Jussi Björling, the Swedish tenor known for his effortless and suave voice as well as his tragically short career.

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12 Questions for Bryn Terfel

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

The Welsh bass-baritone who plays Wotan in the Met’s new Ring cycle tells us about set malfunctions, his love of the band Pink Floyd, and why he's finally releasing a Christmas album.

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When Singers Cross Over from Opera to Pop -- and Back!

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

If there is an audience for it, what difference does it make if a classical artist decides to cross over into the world of popular music every once in a while? I’ll grant you that it suits some singers better than others, but I really don’t see the harm in it. And, if a few more people get turned on to classical music along the way, why not?

 

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Philippe Auguin Named New Music Director at Washington National Opera

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

The Washington National Opera has appointed conductor Philippe Auguin as its new music director. The appointment is the latest in a series of shake-ups for the company.

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Six Singers on the Rise

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

The New York debut has long been a rite of passage for classical musicians. These half a dozen promising young singers have recently or are about to make debuts on New York area stages. Here's what to watch and listen for.

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From the Vaults: George Jellinek Pays Tribute to Pavarotti and Freni

Friday, October 01, 2010

Luciano Pavarotti and Mirella Freni were childhood friends in Italy, and they went on to make many classic recordings together. This archival edition of The Vocal Scene offers a sample of their musical chemistry.

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