Along came Macbeth, an opera I'd never seen, and I had to go. As I settled into my seat, everything seemed comfortably the same. But as the house lights dimmed and the crystal chandeliers rose upward, my heart rose with them.
It's easy to get caught up in consumerism every Christmas, taking one dreaded day to slog through a sea of people in the malls and dig for that discount-priced trinket that won't embarrass you too much when the person you love tears open your lousy gift.
I've thoroughly enjoyed everything I've seen from SF Opera this season, and La Bohème, conducted by Giuseppe Finzi, was no exception.
Working under the radar for the past year, asset manager and former board member Roy Niederhoffer, after pledging $1 million of his own money and raising a total of over $2.5 million to date, has now won the right (pending court approval) to revive and reinvent the company we all thought had left us forever.
They own their offices and rehearsal space, and they seem to have a devoted and secure audience. Why would a company like that need to make such a dramatic change, I wondered.
It's a marvel to me that the moment I would consider the opera's most powerful -- indeed, the moment in which the underlying seriousness of this seemingly comic fluff reveals itself -- comes in silence.
The world of grand opera is generally not known for its comedies, and few are quite as grand, funny or poignant as the Metropolitan Opera's magnificen...
On World AIDS Day in 2012, the New York City-based "artists' peace corps" Sing for Hope marked the twentieth anniversary of the classical music world's first organized response to the AIDS crisis.
I saw at an early age that through singing one could stand up for the rights of the many. What I realize now is that I longed to do something for the greater good through singing and that this was a part of what the folk movement and protest song genre accomplished.
Few operas can provide an evening of such pure delight as Il Barbiere di Siviglia, and few productions of Rossini's comic gem are as much fun as the o...
They performed the song a couple of times, thanked me, and left. A moment later, the singer returned, cheeks wet with tears. "Thank you, sir," she said, squeezing my hand. Then, urgently: "I love the songs so much."
I have to believe that if I had the access to social networking and the Internet that exists today, I would have experienced less isolation.
Some people say opera is dying. Others say it's experiencing a kind of rebirth. I'm in the latter camp, as I mentioned in my most recent articles about the burgeoning of exciting new opera companies in the United States during the past 10 years. But another aspect of the opera world that seems to be having a rebirth is opera marketing.
New Yorkers are in the enviable position that, sooner or later, everyone will come and visit the city. We do not have to travel the world - even though many of us love to do so - to learn about different cultures because the world comes to us.
Despite my enthusiasm for all things politically incorrect, I was completely surprised by my reaction to Klinghoffer.
Composer Brian Schober had been vacationing for at least a decade in Ocho Rios, Jamaica when one day he discovered the legendary Rose Hall, a plantation house located outside of Montego Bay. The property turned out to have a fascinating back story dating back hundreds of years.