Metropolitan Opera 2017-18 Review – Turandot: James Morris Tribute Takes Centerstage in Overall Uneven Performance of Puccini’s Final Masterpiece

Occasionally music history has strange coincidences where a famous composer is unable to finish his final work. This is particularly strange when the final work has something to do with death. Consider Mozart who died writing a requiem.  Likewise, Giacomo Puccini succumbed to lung cancer before completing “Turandot.”  The last piece he wrote was the funeral march for the slave {…}

Deutsche Oper Am Rhein 2017-18 Review – La Cenerentola: Winning Ensemble Cast in Classic Ponnelle Production Remains Pleasing to Audiences

The story of “Cinderella” is one told in many iterations and for good reasons. It’s a feel-good story that is certainly uplifting during trying times. The well-traveled Jean-Pierre Ponnelle version of Rossini’s “La Cenerentola” made a stop this past Sunday at Deutsche Oper Am Rhein in Dusseldorf and it’s not often you witness as many ovations in the opera house {…}

Oper Köln 2017-18 Review – Tannhäuser: Pomeroy Shines in Production Memorable For Creative Use of Converted Space

Opinions on regietheater can be quite divided although anyone with a negative one should have a level of understanding for what Oper Köln is currently undergoing. The company’s opera house, located in the center of the city in the square named for native son Jacques Offenbach, is currently being renovated. That has required Oper Köln to shift to several locations {…}

Opéra National De Paris 2017-18 Review – Don Carlos: Jonas Kaufmann, Elīna Garanča, Sonya Yoncheva & Company Deliver Performance For the Ages

The hotly anticipated production of Verdi’s five-act grand opera “Don Carlos” opened at the Opéra National de Paris on 10 October to a mixed reception. The outstanding cast comprised of German tenor Jonas Kaufmann in the title role, French baritone Ludovic Tézier as Rodrigo, Marquis of Posa, Russian basses Ildar Abdrazakov and Dmitry Belosselskiy as Philippe II and the Grand {…}

Teatro dell’Opera di Roma 2017-18 Review – Fra Diavolo: Great Singing & Production Marry Comedy & Drama Seamlessly

During the 19th century “Fra Diavolo,” written by Auber to a libretto by Scribe, was one of France’s most popular operas, amassing over 900 performances at the Opéra Comique, before finally being dropped from the repertoire in 1907. Nowadays, it has largely been forgotten, with only the occasional rare outing, of which Opera Roma’s is the latest offering. Yet, based {…}

Bayerische Staatsoper 2017-18 Review – Così Fan Tutte: Eye-Catching Couples, Comedy and Camaraderie Display Mozart’s Magic

“Così fan tutte” has often been a vehicle for some terrific singing as the third and final Mozart opera penned by Lorenzo Da Ponte. That was again the case Friday night at the Bayerische Staatsoper as a cast of rising stars showcased their respective talents in octogenarian Dieter Dorn’s production. When something has lasted for almost a quarter century, there {…}