Monthly Archives: May 2013

Commentary on Numbers 8:23-26

Tweet The Lord spoke to Moses saying: This is the rule for the Levites. From 25 years of age up they shall participate in the workforce in the service of the Tent of Meeting; but at the age of 50 they shall retire from the workforce and shall serve no more. They may assist their…


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Tutto Verdi: I Due Foscari

Tweet Verdi’s sixth opera was first performed in Rome in November 1844. Its libretto (by Francesco Piave) was based on Byron’s play The Two Foscari. Despite much beautiful music, the work has to be judged a failure. Three years after its premiere, Verdi himself summarized the reasons for the work’s failure. “In subjects which are…


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Zinka Milanov’s Birthday

Tweet Today is the 107th anniversary of the greatest Verdi soprano I ever heard – Zinka Milanov (1906-1989). Milanov was the Queen of the Met where she sang 449 performances between 1937 and 1966. In the core Verdi roles I have never heard her equal. She was a unique artist. The only words that can…


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More on Salt – Medicine is Hopeless

Tweet A study by the the Institute of Medicine at the behest of the Centers for Disease Control has shown no benefit from sharply decreasing salt intake in preventing strokes and heart attacks even in high risk patients. You may recall that I wrote about the American Society of Nephrology’s recommendation to sharply restrict salt intake in…


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Il Trovatore in Houston

Tweet The Houston Grand Opera closed its 2013 season with a performance of Verdi’s Il Trovatore on May 11, 2013. Il Trovatore isn’t just any great opera, it is opera writ as large as possible – at least the Italian variety. It has everything that makes opera a great art form – melody, drama, virtuosic…


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Jackie Robinson and 42

Tweet I went to see the new movie about Jackie Robinson with reluctance and trepidation. Robinson was the hero of my youth. I remember his first season in Brooklyn vividly. He was an athletic hero who really was a hero. I was worried that Hollywood would mess up his story. The film focuses on Robinson’s signing by…


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The Photographs of Robert Cahen – Cesare Siepi

Tweet The following photos are of the late bass Cesare Siepi (1923-2010) as Don Giovanni They were taken by Mr Cahen during the 1968 run of Don Giovanni in San Francisco. The complete cast list is below. –


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