When legendary soprano Patricia Racette, currently starring at the Met in Pagliacci, called and asked if I would like to produce her new CD, I had to pinch myself. This is the kind of request that can make my day, week and month.
McVicar's choice to treat the operas as two separate pieces is interesting. Yes, they're two different pieces by two different composers, but they share multiple common themes. Pagliacci's composition was, in fact, inspired by Cavalleria.
In a world filled with cutting satire and brutal parody and subversive deconstruction, he was one of those comics who really believed the purpose of comedy was to make people happy, to help people forget.