RSS barczablog

  • Elektra again February 17, 2019
    Today I had a second chance to see & hear the Canadian Opera Company’s Elektra at the Four Seasons Centre. It was so much better for me the second time, possibly because I was sitting closer. That first time (from a … Continue reading →
  • Glimpses of The Eternal Feminine with Barbara Hannigan February 15, 2019
    When I posted that photo at lunch earlier today from last night’s Toronto Symphony concert, I joked that Barbara Hannigan is a precedent setter. Even so I understated what we saw & heard tonight. With one exception, the five works … Continue reading →
  • Barbara Hannigan on Valentine’s Day February 14, 2019
    Happy Valentine’s Day. Tonight I’ll be listening to the Toronto Symphony celebrate the day under the leadership of Barbara Hannigan, who will also be singing. Here’s the program: Debussy: Syrinx for solo flute [3′] Sibelius: Luonnotar for Soprano and Orchestra [10′] Haydn: Symphony No. … Continue reading →
  • COC fan tutte February 10, 2019
    Is it really five years ago? Time flies. In January 2014 Atom Egoyan’s production of Mozart’s Cosi fan tutte had its premiere with the Canadian Opera Company.  I looked back at what I wrote and –after having seen the revival … Continue reading →
  • The Adaptation of Prince Hamlet February 9, 2019
    Do you ever need a tragedy? Sometimes I think we can be so burdened by the troubles of our own lives and the stories we hear from others, that we hunger for catharsis. I can’t be objective about the show … Continue reading →

RSS operaramblings

  • Egoyan’s Così – brunette edition February 6, 2019
    The COC season continued last night with Atom Egoyan’s production of Mozart’s Così fan tutte, first seen in January 2014.  There are some changes from the previous outing but most of what I had to say about the production holds … Continue reading →
  • New members of the Ensemble Studio February 5, 2019
    No big surprises in the announcement of new members of the COC Ensemble Studio.  It’s the three prize winners from last year’s Centre Stage; tenor Matthew Cairns, bass-baritone Vartan Gabrielian and mezzo-soprano Jamie Groote.  Also joining is pianist and intern coach Alex … Continue reading →
  • COC 19/20 revealed February 5, 2019
    The COC 2019/20 season was revealed last night at the Four Seasons Centre.  I liked the set up this time.  A brief introduction from Alexander Neef, an overture and then a well scripted narrative, read by William Webster, describing the … Continue reading →
  • Mother Earth February 5, 2019
    The Vocalis series from the UoT’s graduate students tends to fly under the radar a bit.  Perhaps because it’s usually lost in the abundance of free university linked concerts in Walter Hall.  Sunday night’s performance though was at the Extension … Continue reading →
  • Glenn Gould School Vocal Showcase February 3, 2019
    It’s always an interesting evening.  It’s the first chance of the year to see what the Conservatory has to offer.  The first thing I noticed was that the tenor famine seems to be over.  There were four tenors on offer … Continue reading →

RSS Definitely the Opera

  • That’s women for you February 15, 2019
    Fabulous young singers. A pointlessly beautiful production that doesn’t salvage this Da Ponte bizarrerie. The revival of the Atom Egoyan Cosí comes as a bundle of conflicted feelz. Read here.
    Definitely the Opera
  • Barbara Hannigan conducts the TSO February 14, 2019
    The concert started with the lights down and a Debussy flute solo, Syrinx, by Kelly Zimba placed not on the stage but up on the centre-mezzanine. The three-minute piece led uninterrupted into Hannigan conducting and singing Sibelius’s Luonnotar for soprano and orchestra. The work uses the first poem from Elias Lönnrot’s nineteenth-century epic cycle Kalevala, […]
    Definitely the Opera
  • REVIEW: Elektra at the COC – Goerke, Bullock, Wall, Schwinghammer, Schade January 29, 2019
    So this was pre-tty good. Read all about it HERE.  
    Definitely the Opera
  • When Cross-Sex Casting Doesn’t Quite Work January 13, 2019
    Here’s an argument you’ve never heard me make before: in a limited number of cases, women should not be cast in male roles. Cross-sex or ‘gender-neutral’ casting is now customary across English-speaking world because so many classical works (see first of all: Shakespeare) have so few great female roles. Woman playing Hamlet, or Lear, or […]
    Definitely the Opera
  • 2018 in books December 31, 2018
    It was an odd year in books, with some notable disappointments and some unexpected delights. January started well, with Andy Miller’s The Year of Reading Dangerously, a witty memoir of how one man reorganized his life–and retrained his concentration–to make room for book reading. A lot more book reading, that is, and most of it […]
    Definitely the Opera
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