Metropolitan Opera 2017-18 Review – Madama Butterfly: Ermonela Jaho Triumphs In Tragic Portrayal Of Puccini’s Heroine

Puccini’s “Madama Butterfly” has been a staple of the repertoire for years and at the Metropolitan Opera, it has had somewhat of a renaissance ever since Anthony Minghella’s inventive production came opened in 2006. The opera is really a showcase for a great soprano who can bring forth intense emotions and who can captivate an audience with the lead character’s suffering. For this {…}

The Cantanti Project 2018 Review – Euridice: An Intimate Experience That Shows Us What Opera Is, and What It Could Be

“Euridice” by Giulio Caccini was printed in 1600, as the first publication of an opera score.  This signified the birth of opera and forever established the ground-breaking genre that we still admire today. Causing a stir at the start, Caccini is said to have been in direct competition for the publication of this score with another regarded composer of the {…}

Barbican 2017-18 Review – Dead Man Walking: Joyce DiDonato Shines In Jake Heggie’s Haunting Disarray Of An Opera

Jake Heggie’s 2000 opera “Dead Man Walking” – based on the memoirs of Sister Helen Prejean and inspired by the film of the same name – hardly conforms to operatic standards. An intersection of “Porgy and Bess”-like motifs, rock opera recitatives, and the echoes of New Orleans jazz, it treats the opera template with a moderate respect: scant arias and {…}

Metropolitan Opera 2017-18 Review – La Bohème: Michael Fabiano In Top Form Alongside Splendid Sonya Yoncheva, Susanna Phillips, Lucas Meachem & Others

Puccini’s “La Bohème” made a return to the Metropolitan Opera on Friday, February 16, 2018, with a cast that is slated for an HD performance a week from today. On the evidence of this opening night performance, that transmission the world over should be quite special. Zeffirelli’s production needs no introduction (though if you want some commentary, check out these {…}

New York Philharmonic 2017-18 Review – Die Walküre: Jaap van Zweden & Soloists Deliver Sublime Rendition of Act One of Wagner Masterwork

In 2018-19, Jaap van Zweden, the current Music Director Designate of the New York Philharmonic, will drop the Designate part of that label. And if the concert on Thursday, Feb. 15, 2018 is any indication, he is going to be providing audiences with some dazzling music for years to come. In a series of concerts that kicked off on Valentine’s {…}

Opera Rara 2017-18 Review – The Man who Mistook His Wife for a Hat: Michael Nyman’s Opera About Madness Makes a Lot of Sense in Krakow

Since 2009 Opera Rara has been bringing obscure operatic works to the resplendent royal city of Kraków in Poland. Even though this year’s Opera Rara Festival included works by Charpentier, Gluck, Purcell and John Blow (the latter performed by John Butt and the superb Dunedin Concert) it is not just baroque bijoux which are presented to the receptive and appreciative {…}