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Tuesday, January 4, 2011

2011 Spring Opera Preview: The Operas That Bloom in the Spring (tra-la)

Renée Fleming in Capriccio.
Photo by Ken Howard © 2009 The Metropolitan Opera
As we start the new year, here's a look at some upcoming productions and performances coming to New York City in the next six months. This isn't everything on the schedule, but it includes most of what I'm planning to see and write about.

The Metropolitan Opera offers its first ever performances of Nixon in China in February. James Maddalena sings the title role, and composer John Adams is scheduled to conduct.

Also on tap:
  • Revivals of Iphegenie en Tauride, The Queen of Spades, Wozzeck, Capriccio and Ariadne auf Naxos in addition to works by Verdi and Puccini.
  • Die Walküre, the second installment in Robert Lepage's new production of the Ring. Deborah Voigt sings Brunnhilde in her first Met performances as Wagner's Valkyrie goddess.
In other Lepage-related news, the director's "aquatic" collaboration with the Canadian Opera Company: The Nightingale and Other Short Fables comes to Brooklyn Academy of Music for a short run, er, swim in early March.

Over at City Opera, the company offers an interesting spring slate.
  • A revival of L'elisir d'amore is planned for March, bringing Donizetti's bel canto comedy back to the stage.
  • Seance for a Wet Afternoon, the first "proper" opera by Broadway composer Steven Schwartz.
  • An evening of Monodramas: one-act works by Arnold Schoenberg, Morton Feldman and John Zorn.
  • A children's performance of Oliver Knussen's opera Where the Wild Things Are.
Operas in concert:
  • The American Symphony Orchestra continues to bring rare repertory to light with this performance of Bérénice, the final opera by "French Wagnerite" Albéric Magnard. One performance at Carnegie Hall.
  • In March, the Opera Orchestra of New York presents Meyerbeer's L'Africaine, a rarely heard example of French grand opera on the largest possible scale.
  • Riccardo Muti brings his Chicago Symphony Orchestra forces to Carnegie Hall for an eagerly anticipated performance of Verdi's Otello.
  • The New York Philharmonic will perform Bartok's Bluebeard's Castle as part of their three-week Hungarian Echoes festival in March. Esa-Pekka Salonen conducts.
  • The Philharmonic's 2011 season concludes in June with a semi-staged version of Leos Janacek's The Cunning Little Vixen.
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Critical Thinking in the Cheap Seats

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Since 2007, Superconductor has grown from an occasional concert or CD review to a near-daily publication covering classical music, opera and the arts in and around NYC, with excursions to Boston, Philadelphia, and upstate NY. I am a freelance writer living and working in Brooklyn NY. And no, I'm not a conductor.