If you've been keeping up with your viral videos as of late, then perhaps you caught the one of Matt Buck, a sousaphone player who played alongside a KKK rally that took place outside the South Carolina State House.
"Opera," said the Canadian tenor Jon Vickers once in an interview, "is not entertainment." For entertainment, he explained, he would far rather watch My Fair Lady. Opera had to go deeper. It was deeper, or it was nothing.
Russian theater director, Timofei Kulyabin, is facing jail time for his misinterpretation of a Wagner opera in the Russian city of Novosibirsk. We've heard of a bad performance, but this bad?
The late great Wagnerian soprano, Birgit Nilsson, has been able to hit all the right notes. And now, Sweden's central bank, Sverigis Riksbank, has unveiled the finished artwork for its new series of banknotes. Nilsson will be worth 500 kronor from Oct. 2015 on.
The venerable Opera magazine has announced the winners of its still-rather-new annual awards, the "Operas" (think Oscars but with more singing and a smaller budget). Since Opera has been the bible for international opera reviews for many decades, it's a nice idea and one that makes sense. It would be nice to be able to post Opera reviews for all of the winners, or sound clips from recent productions from them all, and maybe that's something the organizers can look at next year.
Some interesting statistics, yes, from the U.K.-based music website Bachtrack. Every year, they compile the stats from the events they have listed, and the list for 2013 has Valery Gergiev as the world's busiest conductor. Andris Nelsons comes second.
"There is this cultural kind of gladiatorial aspect to opera singing and opera singers because they are out there, they are singing into [hidden] microphones for the purpose of the audiences in movie theatres but they are not being amplified, they are on their own." -- Peter Gelb
It may have divided opinion, but Classicalite's contributing editor was riveted by Covent Garden's big new production for Wagner's anniversary year.
It does sound a contradiction in terms, doesn't it? But if theater can have the famous "Pinter pause," so music can have its silences.
Some 150 years later, it's easy to forget that much of Richard Strauss' music was once considered avant-garde--certainly his operas 'Salome' and 'Elektra,' as well as many of his tone poems. To wit, Leon Botstein's American Symphony Orchestra has chosen to perform one of his most controversial works, the one-act opera 'Feuersnot,' in a concert staging at Carnegie Hall on Sunday, December 15 at 2:00 p.m.
What does great art do to our bodies? In an exciting world first, The Science of Opera with Stephen Fry and Alan Davies saw a team of medical scientists from UCL discovering what happens inside us when we go to the opera. Opera lover Stephen Fry took his friend, Royal Opera virgin and QI panellist Alan Davies, to the Royal Opera House. They were hooked up with the latest medical gadgetry to record the physical effects on their bodies of watching Verdi's political masterpiece Simon Boccanegra. The Science of Opera promises some landmark medical discoveries as well as answering some key questions; was Alan Davies won over by opera? Did Stephen Fry get shivers down the spine during the show? Did either of them fall asleep? And what could opera do to you?
The JSO has worked out a fascinating way to present a Richard Wagner symposium without actually playing any of his music.
It took 158 years to get here, but Les Vêpres Siciliennes, one of the grandest of Verdi's operas, made its Royal Opera debut in London with a production that proved an ideal platform for soloists, ballerinas and choruses.
Wagnerites, take heed. In celebration of both National Opera Week as well as the composer's ongoing 200th, the Wagner Society of Santa Fe is seeking sequels to Der Ring des Nibelungen--specifically, what happens to Alberich. Yes, all would-be librettists are invited to imagine the treacherous dwarf's fate after the Ring's fiery en
"I have no real training, and anybody who's watched me conduct can tell that. But I have a lot of practical experience, and I have a lot of knowledge about the art form. I get results somehow." -- Antonio Pappano