Category Archives: Opera

Eri Tu

Tweet No composer gave the baritone so many great gifts as did Giuseppe Verdi. Renato, the baritone, has an aria in Act 3 of Un Ballo in Maschera that is a masterpiece of conflicted feelings, pain, betrayal, and revenge. Renato’s wife, Amelia, is in love with his best friend Riccardo the governor of colonial Massachusetts…


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The Girl of the Golden West in Omaha

www.youtube.com/watch?v=3IEvPJk3TCs

Tweet Next February 12 and 14 Opera Omaha will stage Puccini’s real spaghetti western The Girl of the Golden West – aka La Fanciulla del West. The cast is below. Asterisk indicates company debut. Lee Bisset, Minnie* Michael Mayes, Jack Rance* Matthew Treviño, Ashby Elise Quagliata, Wowkle Branch Fields, Jim Larkens / Billy Jack Rabbit*…


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Yonghoon Lee in Cavalleria Rusticana at the Met

Tweet Last night Yonghoon Lee sang his first performance as Turiddu in Mascagni’s Cavalleria Rusticana at the Met. The Korean has been increasingly impressive since his debut at the New York house is 2010. Before the performance an assistant manager made an announcement that Lee was suffering from a cold, but would sing nevertheless. It’s…


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The Pearl Fishers in HD

Tweet Bizet’s Les Pêcheurs de Perles (The Pearl Fishers) was last performed at the Met in 1916 – and then only three times. Enrico Caruso was not enough the make the opera a success in New York and it disappeared until the current run. The opera apparently was brought back at the behest of soprano…


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Tutto Verdi: Simon Boccanegra

Tweet Verdi’s Simon Boccanegra in its revised 1881 version was staged by Parma’s Teatro Reggio in March of 2010. Verdi’s gloomy masterpieces is a specialized taste, the Met did not get to it until 1932 and has only done it 139 times. It’s libretto is awkwardly constructed and sometimes almost impossible to follow. For example,…


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Verdi Chords

Tweet One of the most distinctive characteristics of Giuseppe Verdi’s operas is his use of chords to resolve or punctuate the moments of greatest emotional and dramatic tension as his story reaches a crisis point. This simple device would seem within the grasp of almost any composer, but Verdi’s use of it is unique. Below are…


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Finale 6 – Nabucco Act 1

Tweet A few days ago I mentioned the resemblance of the act 1 finale of William Tell to Nabucco.  Here’s the part of Nabucco that seems very much like the Tell finale. It too occurs in the finale to Act 1. This number is constructed the same way as the Tell piece. An adagio concertato…


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Finale 5 – William Tell Act 1

Tweet William Tell is an Italian opera; no matter that Rossini wrote it to a French script. It’s as Italian as mozzarella. The finale to act 1 sets a model for many of the Italian operas which followed Rossini’s final work. This version of this finale is taken from the performance of Tell in 2013 at…


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Lensky’s Aria

Tweet The only reason that impresarios can convince leading tenors to take the part of Lensky in Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin is the second act aria ‘Kuda, Kuda’, hereafter referred to as Lensky’s aria. Even then tenors dislike  playing a character who dies in the second act. This was why Richard Tucker dropped the role after 1957-58 ….


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Lulu in HD

Tweet Attending a performance of Alban Berg’s opera Lulu is like going through Marine Corp boot camp. While you’re doing it you wonder why on earth you ever attempted such a stress filled enterprise. When it’s over you feel proud of yourself and are glad you don’t have to do it again. Lulu is an opera…


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