Recently in Commentary
Last year’s Strauss anniversary year — 150 years since his birth —
offered, at least in the United Kingdom, a typical number of opportunities and
On 6 June, Jonathan Dove’s Flight touches down in Kensington,
west London. Opera Holland Park is to stage the first London production of
Dove’s operatic presentation of the real-life story of Mehran Karimi Nasseri,
the Iranian exile who, lacking residency rights or refugee status, was forced
to live in the departure lounge of Terminal One at Charles de Gaulle Airport
for 18 years.
San Diego Opera, the company that General Manager Ian Campbell had scheduled for demolition, proved that it is alive and singing as beautifully as ever. Its 2015 season was cut back slightly and management has become a bit leaner, but the company celebrated its fiftieth season in fine style with a concert that included many of the greatest arias ever written.
Kathleen Ferrier may have been one of the world’s finest contraltos but this year’s Kathleen Ferrier Awards Final, held at the Wigmore Hall, was all about lyric sopranos.
East Coast Premiere at Opera Philadelphia next season. Performances from Cold Mountain at the Guggenheim in New York this Monday, March 30.
Five Young Singers Named Winners of the 2015 Met National Council Auditions, America’s Most Prestigious Vocal Competition
Julia Noulin-Mérat is the principal designer for the Noulin-Merat Studio, an intrepid New York City production design firm that works in theater, film, and television, but emphasizes opera and immersive site-specific theatre.
A brand new opera — especially one that is groundbreaking— can really put an opera company on the map. British composer Barry Seaman’s stunning new work, Mirabai, which explores the story of the free thinking, mystic
16th century Hindu princess, Mira, is ambitious on many levels —
artistically, technically and creatively.
Bampton Classical Opera has announced that applications are now open for the
company’s Young Singers’ Competition 2015. This biennial competition was
first launched in 2013 to celebrate Bampton Classical Opera’s 20th
birthday, and is aimed at identifying the finest emerging young opera singers
currently working in the UK.
Anita Rachvelishvili recently performed the title role in Carmen broadcast by The Metropolitan Opera Live in HD. Here she drops by for a little chat with our Maria Nockin.
This is a revised version of my review of the Sept 5th
1991American premiere of The Death of Klinghoffer, at the
Brooklyn Academy of Music. The opera was first performed at Brussels’ La
Monnaie the previous spring.
"Although there are now more people on this planet than there have ever been before, there are fewer dramatic voices. Something is wrong with that equation. I thought there needs to be some sort of helping hand so that dramatic voices don’t fall through the cracks in the system as they advance through their various stages of development."
Anna Prohaska sings Sister Constance in Poulenc’s Dialogues des
Carmélites at the Royal Opera House. In the same month, she’s also in
London to sing a recital with Eric Schneider at the Wigmore Hall, and to sing
Henze with Sir Simon Rattle at the Barbican Hall.
Garsington Opera celebrates its 25th anniversary this year.
Baritone Brandon Coleman’s mother, Linda, knew that 3-year old Brandon
would be a great singer when a stranger who had heard him, predicted it.
Professional opera returns to the Las Vegas Valley June 6th and 8th with performances of one of the best-known comic operas of all time, Gioachino Rossini's Il Barbiere di Siviglia.
I met with the embattled artistic director of the Opéra et Orchestre National de Montepellier not to talk about his battles. I simply wanted to know the man who had cast and staged a truly extraordinary Mozart/DaPonte trilogy.
Maria Nockin interviews tenor Saimir Pirgu.
Italian conductor Claudio Abbado, former principal conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra, has died aged 80
09 Jun 2012
Duisburg Petition Drive Proves Strong Support for Local Opera
Amidst crucial, ongoing financial concerns about future funding for opera
and ballet throughout Germany’s highly populous North Rhein-Westphalia
region, a diverse gathering at the Duisburg Theatre verified sincere grassroots
support for Deutsche Oper Am Rhein and the current partnership with nearby
The primary issue of governmental monetary support reached a crisis point on
May 2nd, when Duisburg’s administrative board recommended terminating a
partnership that has been in place since 1956 with the Dusseldorf company. It
was publicized that approximately one hundred Duisburg performances per year
would be cancelled, starting in the summer of 2014.
Primary concerns voiced in regarding to the potential cuts ranged from the
huge impact on Duisburg’s Philharmonic Orchestra to a loss of numerous
student or youth based programs, and the general decline of the community’s
A packed performance hall included a range of patrons from well heeled
season ticket subscribers to cheap seat, student rush types. Cultural Experts
on hand to present and discuss information included Professor Werner Lohmann,
President of the NRW National Music Council, and Dr. Christian Esch, Director
of NRW Cultural Affairs.
A petition drive to save and continue current production schedules has
reportedly gathered over 28,000 signatures in four weeks. At that rate, the
entire city may have signed by the next “commission for culture” meeting,
set for June 25th. This is still, indeed, a developing story.
Ideally, the many supportive voices raised will prevail as clearly and true
as those regularly heard on the dual stages of Deutsche Oper am Rhein. It is
sometimes difficult to remain optimistic under current budgetary conditions and
it seems like all bets are off these days in EU financial projections.
Hopefully, this musical tale of two cities will conclude without dramatic
losses for either performers or their audience.
By Phillip Woolever
For related stories, see:
Berlin's Struggling Artists Demand Share of the Pie
Uwe Eric Laufenberg Resigns
Photo by Frank Heller