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Latest Operas Stories

2008-09-12 00:00:11

By Jim Farber Los Angeles Opera's long and ardent courtship of Hollywood produced the perfect match for Saturday's gala opening of the company's 2008-2009 season with Academy Award-winning film directors William Friedkin and Woody Allen dividing the task of staging Giacomo Puccini's tragic, sentimental, comic trilogy, "Il Trittico." The red-carpet event at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion featured Hollywood glitterati in the audience and at least one film veteran (Friedkin) on stage taking...

2008-09-12 00:00:11

Three brand new operatic productions in a grand amphitheatre setting are being performed at the Bristol Hippodrome next month and today we offer readers the chance to win tickets to see them. Bizet's Carmen and Puccini's La Boheme and Tosca will each be performed by a large company with a live philharmonic orchestra starring handpicked international soloists alongside the full Chisinau National Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorus. Carmen is staged in a bullring to add a new twist to...

2008-09-08 15:00:42

By MICHAEL TUMELTY Opera T HE MERRY WIDOW, EASTWOOD PARK THEATRE, GIFFNOCK 3/5 SCOTTISH Opera's solution to the challenge it faced in deciding to stage Lehar's operetta, The Merry Widow, in one of its small- scale touring productions, is ingenious but irritating. The nature of the challenge is precise and needs to be outlined. By definition, the company's touring policy includes taking opera to small stages in small venues throughout Scotland. The basic issue is always the same: how...

2008-09-07 21:00:13

By Cheryl North The ladies in their jewel-toned gowns gleaned the oh's and ah's before the curtain rose at War Memorial Opera House Friday night, but it was the men on stage who raked in the raves once the music started. While San Francisco Opera's Gala opening night choice -- Verdi's "Simon Boccanegra"-- is a lesser-known work, the production's powerful singing and polished acting brought a steady stream of artful pleasures. Love and conflict, the usual themes of grand opera, are...

2008-09-07 21:00:13

By Cheryl North The ladies in their jewel-toned gowns gleaned the oh's and ah's before the curtain rose at War Memorial Opera House Friday night, but it was the men on stage who raked in the raves once the music started. While San Francisco Opera's Gala opening night choice -- Verdi's "Simon Boccanegra"-- is a lesser-known work, the production's powerful singing and polished acting brought a steady stream of artful pleasures. Baritone Dmitri Hvorostovsky's characterization of...

2008-09-07 06:00:09

By Sue Gilmore For half its length, Bay Area author Amy Tan's 2001 novel "The Bonesetter's Daughter" thrums along in a quiet, self-reflective way, its narrative driven by the estrogen-drenched domestic angst that entangles mothers and daughters in so many of her books. In Part Two, on a particular page with a single spectacular incident, however, the whole thing explodes, going unmistakably, irretrievably, over-the-top operatic with such force that it casts everything that has gone before...

2008-09-06 00:00:11

By Bob Strauss At the moment, Woody Allen is enjoying his most popular, best- reviewed movie in years, "Vicky Cristina Barcelona." So, in typical self-sabotaging fashion, the next thing up for the 72-year-old comedian and film auteur is something he could likely get crucified for. "Unlike at movies, at the opera, they boo," says Allen, referring to his first-ever stab at directing live opera, "Gianni Schicchi," which premieres Saturday at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion. "I don't know if I...

2008-09-04 03:00:15

By Jim Farber In his New York City apartment, Placido Domingo keeps a small embroidered pillow that proclaims: "If I rest I rust." It certainly is the right motto for the globe-trotting tenor's nonstop lifestyle. One moment Domingo was in Beijing performing before thousands at the closing ceremonies of the Olympic Games. Seemingly the next, even before the torch had time to cool, he was onstage at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion to discuss the opening of Los Angeles Opera's 23 rd season....

2008-08-29 06:00:39

By Cheryl North Seated in the single chair in front of the security man's cubicle in the lonely lobby of the Zellerbach rehearsal area in Davies Symphony Hall, I had almost given up the possibility of an interview with grand opera's gold medal-level baritone, Dmitri Hvorostovsky. Communication problems and hours of phone tag had stretched the time for our prospective interview from 2:30 p.m. on into the early evening. The great singer is in town with his beautiful Italian-born wife,...

2008-08-28 18:00:36

TENOR Dean Power gave the performance of his life at the festival launch, singing the Handel aria Forte E Lieto Amore. The 22-year-old, who is to start a masters course at the Royal Irish Academy of Music, is representing the Opera Theatre Company, which will be performing in the festival. He said: "I've been singing for about eight years and it's really exciting and nerveracking to be chosen to be here today." Dean is on the Opera Theatre Company's young artists programme for the next...


Word of the Day
omphalos
  • The navel or umbilicus.
  • In Greek archaeology: A central boss, as on a shield, a bowl, etc.
  • A sacred stone in the temple of Apollo at Delphi, believed by the Greeks to mark the 'navel' or exact center-point of the earth.
'Omphalos' comes from the ancient Greek.
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