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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 © 2018 by Paul J. Pelkonen. For more about Superconductor, visit this link. For advertising rates, click this link. Follow us on Facebook.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Opera Blogs Cause Cancer!

"They're just words, Marcelo. They can't hurt you."
Marcelo Álvarez in Carmen at the Met.

Tenor Marcelo Álvarez has smoke coming out of his ears.

In a recent interview in the London Times, the Argentinian singer says that opera blogs are "a cancer on the operatic world."

"Perhaps you sing one bad performance and these websites attack and blow it out of proportion. They always write: bad, bad, bad!” the tenor told the London Times reporter. “Some artistic directors read these sites and a lot of contracts go.”

Mr. Álvarez, appearing at Covent Garden in a new production of Aida by David McVicar. "It looks a little like Stargate!" he told the Times. He is planning to add Don Alvaro in Verdi's La Forza del Destino to his repertory in the next few years. Considering that Mr. Álvarez is a spinto tenor with a small-to-medium sized voice, singing the heavy Verdi roles may be a recipe for career disaster.

Opera lovers may recall that Luciano Pavarotti was engaged to sing Don Alvaro at the Met in 1997. When Mr. Pavarotti felt that he had not learned the role adequately, the Met replaced Forza with Un Ballo in Maschera, a work better suited to his voice. The Met made a similar accomodation for Mr. Álvarez in 2008, when the Franco Zeffirelli production of Carmen replaced Les contes d'Hoffman in the Met's lineup.

On a personal note, it's good to know that directors are reading our sites. Hopefully, Mr. Álvarez is reading this too.

In other news, my friend, colleague and fellow blogger James Jorden, author of the fabulous Parterre Box, is celebrating his 3,000th blog post!

I would say that this calls for a cigar! I recommend either the Arturo Fuente Don Carlos, or (pictured at right) CAO's new blend, the La Traviata.

Smoke 'em if you got 'em.

Photo © 2008 The Metropolitan Opera

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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.