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Our motto: "Critical thinking in the cheap seats." Unbiased, honest classical music and opera opinions, occasional obituaries and classical news reporting, since 2007. All written content © 2019 by Paul J. Pelkonen. For more about Superconductor, visit this link. For advertising rates, click this link. Follow us on Facebook.

Monday, July 9, 2007

Notes from the Cheap Seats: Summer Festival Update

The Russified Ring
  • This opera lover goes back to the Met on Friday (after two much needed months away) to attend the first of four performances of the Kirov's staging of Wagner's Ring Cycle. Valery Gergiev will be in the pit, but the real treat will be seeing the spectacular visual effects and pageantry that are trademarks of the Kirov approach to the opera. Das Rheingold is Friday night and Die Walküre is on Saturday. More to follow on this exciting version of the famous German mythological drama as it develops!

Orpheus In Cooperstown
  • In other news, the Glimmerglass Opera Festival opened its four-opera summer season on July 7th, This year, the focus is on the Orpheus myth, with Offenbach's Orphee aux Enfers, Gluck's Orphee et Euridice, (presented in the Hector Berlioz version, very different than the production that bowed at the Met in May, Monteverdi'sOrfeo, and Philip Glass's Orphee. (Personally, I want to see some company do this with the Faust operas...but that's just me.)
Brushing Up Their Shakespeare

  • In related news, the Glimmerglass Opera has announced its 2008 season where the real cheese is a rare series of performances of Das Liebesverbot, an early Wagner comic opera based on Shakespeare's Measure for Measure. It will be staged in conjunction with three other Shakespeare-related works: Handel's Giulio Cesare in Egitto, Bellini's I Capuletti e Montecchi, and Cole Porter's immortal Kiss Me Kate. All four operas will be presented on a unit set designed by John Conklin meant to evoke an Elizabethan theater.

OK I've brought my harp--now which way to the Hall of Fame?

Orpheus. Image © 2007 Glimmerglass Opera

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Critical Thinking in the Cheap Seats