Opera Meets Film: Kotlyarevsky’s ‘Natalka Poltavka’ From Stage to Screen

Ukrainian writer Ivan Kotlyarevsky wrote the original story of “Natalka Poltavka” in 1819. Scholars and nationals alike consider Kotlyarevsky to be the “father” of Ukraine’s literature. Having helped Ukrainian literature make the jump from its older form to its new form in the late 18th to early 19th centuries, Kotlyarevsky (much like Pushkin for Russian literature) mirrored the societies in which {…}

Opera Meets Film: Shostakovich Reimagined In Andrey Khrzhanovsky’s ‘The Nose’

Censorship. Repression. Scorn. Brutality. Humor. Absurdity. Hysteria. Russia’s relationship with self-expression has been a fraught one throughout its tumultuous history. Full of danger and hardship, with no guarantee that your vision will be seen, respected, or even tolerated unless it is confined to authorized narratives, music has always been that one art form whose voice is hard to control and {…}

Watch These Films Before Seeing the Metropolitan Opera’s ‘The Hours’ & ‘Rigoletto’

November at the Metropolitan Opera will showcase three new operas productions. Audiences will see “Don Carlo” starring tenor Russell Thomas, “Rigoletto,” and the world premiere production of “The Hours” starring Renee Fleming and Joyce DiDonato. In the third article of the series, we will look at two of those operas and their corresponding silver screen adaptations. The Hours  Modern operas {…}

Opera Meets Film: How Straub & Huillet’s ‘Moses und Aron’ Leaves Us to Our Own Interpretative Devices

Despite Arnold Schoenberg’s (1874-1951) widespread popularity as one of the most important ‘fathers of serialism’ and the person almost solely responsible for ushering in the age of dodecaphony (12-tone technique), his four operas are largely unknown. Despite this, it was Schoenberg’s fourth opera, “Moses und Aron,” which would transform opera forever. No longer constricted by the indulgent attitudes of Italian {…}

Opera Meets Film: How Andrzej Żuławski’s ‘Boris Godunov’ Shows Past as Prologue

In January 1989, the Polish film director Andrzej Żuławski released his film “Boris Godunov,” a film that cost seven million dollars to create. It featured a live production of the monster opera conducted by the eminent Soviet cellist and conductor, Mstislav Rostropovich. The film would re-conceptualize the opera in a mise en abyme (self-reflection) style, layering the operatic performance inside {…}