28 September 2006

Tres Tristan

My season of three Tristans:

Bayreuth, 21 August 2006

San Francisco Opera, 27 October 2006

Los Angeles Philharmonic, 24 April 2007

povera Butterfly

After several recent conversations about SF Opera and then after reading the blogosphere reviews of the Met's opening production, I guess I need to revise what I said earlier about nobody really minding Madama Butterfly's many appearances on opera stages everywhere: it looks as if quite a few people feel about Cio-Cio San the way I feel about Mimi. I should have learned from my experience recommending one of my all-time favorite films, The Story of Adele H.: not everyone shares my taste for obsessive tales of unrequited love.

Is it also possible that not everyone is crazy about German expressionism?

19 September 2006

pre-order excitement

A week from today (that would be September 26) two CDs are being released of particular interest. I haven't been this hyped up about pre-orders since Edgar Allan Poe & the Juke-Box in March.

1) Naxos is releasing John Harbison's Chamber Music, with Lorraine Hunt Lieberson. I haven't been able to find out much more information about this, from Amazon or the Naxos website (I'm not even sure if "Chamber Music" is the title of the piece or a generic title for the album), but I really don't need anything other than the singer.

2) Audra McDonald has a new album -- Build a Bridge. The product description quoted on Amazon says, "she combines material from precious [I assume they mean precocious but what a funny error] young songwriters like Rufus Wai[n]wright, Nellie McKay and even John Mayer with the work of frequent collaborator and Broadway innovator Adam Guettel, Elvis Costello/Burt Bacharach, Laura Nyro, and Randy Newman." Again, it's the singer (no offense to the song) that is really selling this one to me.

It is, it is, a glorious thing. . . .

Ahoy, mates -- for any lubbers who know not this be Talk Like a Pirate Day, here be the link:


The name generators are particularly good -- one of them didn't even ask me any questions, it just rechristened me Diego the Bitter, which is so great I may switch to that year-round.