Review: World Class “Manon Lescaut” – San Francisco Opera, November 19, 2006

Donald Runnicles’ first performance of Puccini’s “Manon Lescaut” in San Francisco, was his fifth Puccini work among 54 different operas he has conducted for the company. Originally scheduled in a different (and almost certainly less traditional) production by former General Director Pamela Rosenberg, it represented current Director David Gockley’s fifth change in the fall season … Read more

Review: Deconstructing San Francisco Opera’s Super-sized “Barber” – November 12, 2006

Previously, this website has suggested that, as the footprints of former San Francisco Opera General Director Pamela Rosenberg are washed away over time, the only souvenir of her controversial stewardship may be the world’s largest production of Rossini’s “Barbiere di Siviglia” ever conceived.  Would that this souvenir never existed, and that some spectacular souvenir productions from the … Read more

Review: Hvorostovsky, Guryakova, Berti Excel in Houston Grand Opera “Simon Boccanegra” – November 4, 2006

Those who lament the current day’s supposed absence of large Verdian voices would be encouraged by the Houston Grand Opera’s 2006 mounting of the Royal Opera’s production of Verdi’s “Simon Boccanegra”. Those who hope that new San Francisco Opera Director David Gockley will be able to restore the tradition of presenting large Verdian voices in … Read more