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Latest Operas Stories

2008-08-04 09:00:38

By Chitra Ramaswamy Jane Irwin and Kate Valentine tell Chitra Ramaswamy why playing The Two Widows in Scottish Opera's new show fills their hearts with joy THERE can't be many who have sung the leads in Czech composer Bedrich Smetana's The Two Widows who have a relationship as significant as soprano Kate Valentine and mezzo Jane Irwin. Quite simply, explains Valentine during rehearsals at Scottish Opera's Glasgow base, if it weren't for Irwin she wouldn't be here, preparing to make her...

2008-08-03 12:00:00

By Scott Cantrell, The Dallas Morning News Aug. 3--SANTA FE, N.M.--No soap opera could outdo the plot of Handel's Radamisto. Radamisto, prince of Thrace, and his wife, Zenobia, are lovingly devoted to one another. But Tiridate, king of Armenia, has the hots for Zenobia -- to the extent that he's ready to discard his own devoted wife, Polissena, and invade Thrace. Meanwhile, Tiridate's commander Tigrane is in love with Polissena. Now add the gender-bending conventions of baroque opera,...

2008-08-03 06:00:17

By Donna Doherty, New Haven Register, Conn. Aug. 3--CLINTON -- Jealousy, passion and politics -- always a volatile mix, but never more so than when Giacomo Puccini mixes them together in what is an opera singer and lover's dream, "Tosca." The Opera Theater of Connecticut celebrates the 150th birthday of Puccini by presenting the melodrama Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday (7:30 p.m.) and 6 p.m. Aug. 10 at Andrews Memorial Hall. Tired of turning people away and mindful of the popularity of the...

2008-08-03 03:00:16

By Tanner, Michael La Gioconda; Pulcinella; Iolants Opera Holland Park On a hot fine evening in London there can't be anywhere more delightful for an opera-lover than Opera Holland Park, which is now so comfortable, and has such high standards of performance, that to see a rarely performed work there is in all respects at least as enjoyable as it would be anywhere. The admirable policy of mixing conventional fare with rather out-of-theway things seems to work well, since I get a strong...

2008-08-03 00:00:17

By Anna Picard It was an afterthought for Tchaikovsky, but his 'Iolanta' has been reworked as a gripping sexual psychodrama Classical Iolanta Opera Holland Park LONDON La Gioconda Opera Holland Park LONDON BBC Proms (1,6 &14) Royal Albert Hall/ Cadogan Hall LONDON Commissioned as a companion piece to The Nutcracker and saddled with a lopsided libretto, Tchaikovsky's Iolanta was premiered in the same year as Maeterlinck's Pelleas et Melisande. History has judged the opera with pettish...

2008-07-31 15:00:41

By KEITH POWERS Opera preview It's maybe the one place in the world where it's safe to smoke a cigarette. Make-believe cigarettes, that is. We're talking about Bizet's popular opera "Carmen," with its sexy, supercharged plot, set in a cigarette factory. Boston Midsummer Opera recreates it this week at Boston University's Tsai Performance Center. Only it won't be the famed three-hour version. This "Carmen," titled "The Tragedy of Carmen," is English theater and film director Peter...

2008-07-31 06:00:32

By John Von Rhein, Chicago Tribune Jul. 31--The catchy tunes and high tragedy of "Carmen" have made Georges Bizet's final stage work one of the most popular operas of all time. But did you know the French composer wrote seven other operas before his death at 36? Lyric Opera is staging one of those other operas, "The Pearl Fishers," this fall. But the prize for musical enterprise goes to the folks at the Chicago Cultural Center, who, beginning Sunday afternoon, are delving into the dusty...

2008-07-31 03:00:25

By Mark Kanny, The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review Jul. 31--In one respect, Undercroft Opera is the boldest company in Pittsburgh. It presents great operas using volunteer singers and instrumentalists. Whatever the level of talent and training, none earns his living as a performer. Undercroft Opera presents Giacomo Puccini's "La Boheme" in performances Friday through Sunday at Bethel Park High School and Aug. 8 through 10 at Synod Hall in Oakland. Woody Brown is the conductor and Sally Denmead...

2008-07-30 15:00:00

By Scott Cantrell, The Dallas Morning News Jul. 30--SANTA FE, N.M. -- One of those only-in-Santa Fe vistas greeted the audience for Monday's performance of The Marriage of Figaro. Behind row upon row of faux flowers on the stage of the Crosby Theatre, the open upstage gave a view of real purple mountains and streaks of clouds in a yellowish sunset. The best set painter couldn't have matched the magic. Santa Fe Opera's new production of Mozart's evergreen is certainly lively and...

2008-07-29 03:01:05

By John Farrell "If you have got gum in your mouth you have to get rid of it! No gum, especially if you are a dog or a cat!" Guaranteed, you'll never hear that on a rehearsal stage at the Metropolitan Opera. On the other hand, on the rehearsal stage of the Long Beach Opera Camp, that kind of instruction is pretty much par for the course as stage director SuzAnne Bradaric and her staff wrangle the 30 or so fourth- and fifth-grade students who comprise the cast and chorus of "Brundibar."...