Thread: Opera Small Talk

          
   
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  1. #2281
    Senior Member Involved Member Nemorino's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva) View Post
    By the way, regarding failures of major productions by major companies, Opera Today has bashed the new Tcherniakov production of Les Troyens for Opéra Bastille.

    http://www.operatoday.com/content/20...in_flames_.php

    I take it with a grain of salt because in my opinion Tcherniakov is the best opera director in activity.

    Although, there is a second bad review, and a third one, maybe I should believe it (apparently the conductor literally waved a white flag from the pit when the boos started, LOL):

    https://bachtrack.com/review-troyens-tcherniakov-d-oustrac-jovanovich-semenchuk-bastille-opera-paris-january-2019

    https://www.operanews.com/Opera_News...s_Troyens.html

    Or not. Here, a positive review (the title notwithstanding, the article reviews two pieces, it's the other one that they call disgusting):

    https://www.spectator.co.uk/2019/02/...er-disgusting/
    I watched the production on arte.tv and you have to see it:

    Go with your initial instinct to trust in Tcherniakov. This production was pretty incredible, but also a lot to digest. I would give the first part an A+ and the 2nd part an A in theory, but a B in practice.

    The problem for people is that "La prise de Trois" was told fairly traditionally - updated to a fictional 20th-century dictatorship, but otherwise following the plot of the opera - and "Les Troyens a Carthage" chucked the original story in favor of a Tcherniakov creation. One can understand the knee-jerk reaction among these poor critics lulled into a false sense of security... ; )

    The staging of "La prise de Trois" was incredible, and Stephanie d'Oustrac was of course amazing. The moments before the curtain closes on Act II had me on the edge of my seat, and the audience clearly loved it too. The staging for the rest of the opera is in a mental health facility (resembling how he staged Carmen). Aeneas is being treated for severe PTSD, and Dido is implied to be a victim of extreme brutality at the hands of the enemy combatants in the first half (I think there was a different actress playing this character wordlessly in the first half, but the costuming made it clear). Tcherniakov's skits didn't always make total sense to me on first viewing, but I thought the idea behind was pretty great and really thought-provoking. And the idea of the 2nd half being about the trauma of the war in the 1st half... well that part is THERE in the libretto, Tcherniakov just multiplied it and really woke me up to thinking about it in that way.

    Jovanovich was amazing in this. Sememchuk was good, but I couldn't help thinking that Garanca could have made the character just a little more interesting with her supernatural charisma.

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  3. #2282
    Senior Member Involved Member Nemorino's Avatar
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    One has to feel some trepidation for The Met replacing their beloved Aida production (I personally feel that they should semi-retire it and bring it back every 5-6 years or so as an event, but that might not be a possibility for economical reasons).

    But in the casting announcement today (this is for 2020-2021) they announced the involvement of 59 Productions and I AM OFFICIALLY IN. This company is behind the very best projections in opera. Marnie, Steve Jobs, the very stunning Santa Fe Candide; also the 2012 Olympics opening ceremony, and opening night of the 2018 Proms. Modern opera productions are going to need to integrate projections better in order to be visually dazzling, and these folks are the most convincing yet.

  4. #2283
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Florestan's Avatar
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    My wife homeschools two girls for a needy family. Today they want through this:

    Classics for Kids, What's an Opera?
    "Ah,non credea mirarti si presto estinto, o fiore." --Bellini, La Sonnambula (also written on his tomb).

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  6. #2284
    Opera Lively Media Consultant Top Contributor Member Ann Lander (sospiro)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Florestan View Post
    My wife homeschools two girls for a needy family. Today they want through this:

    Classics for Kids, What's an Opera?
    What a good way to introduce opera to children. (Kudos to your wife for doing what she does).
    "Every theatre is an insane asylum, but an opera theatre is the ward for the incurables."

    FRANZ SCHALK, attributed, Losing the Plot in Opera: Myths and Secrets of the World's Great Operas

  7. #2285
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Florestan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ann Lander (sospiro) View Post
    What a good way to introduce opera to children. (Kudos to your wife for doing what she does).
    Couple years ago I gave the family the La Cenerentola with von Stade and the girls said they watched it. I then gave them Barber of Seville, but the mom cut off watching at one point and said time for bed. Never heard if they finished it. Not sure if she did not like the pretend drunk scene or what because there was a drunk scene in Cenerentola too.

    Wife can't stand opera and tries to imitate the high soprano in a goofy way to show me how silly it is. Oh well. That's what earbuds are for I guess.
    "Ah,non credea mirarti si presto estinto, o fiore." --Bellini, La Sonnambula (also written on his tomb).

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