Review: Nino Machaidze and the Domingos (Placido and Marta) Create a Memorable “La Traviata” – Los Angeles Opera, September 13, 2014

There was much to admire in the Los Angeles Opera’s 2014-15 season-opening production of Verdi’s “La Traviata’ – the expert conducting of the Los Angeles Opera Orchestra by its music director James Conlon; Arturo Chacon-Cruz’ silky-smooth lyric tenor used so effectively in an ardent portrayal of Alfredo Germont; a strong cast in the supporting roles; … Read more

Essay: New Hope Valley as a Character in Carlisle Floyd’s Opera “Susannah”

In celebration of the San Francisco Opera’s new production of Carlisle Floyd’s “Susannah”, I am reposting an essay on the opera that was originally written as part of a review for an Opera Pacific performance. (For my review of the San Francisco Opera performance, see:  Review: Racette, Aceto, Jovanovich in Brilliant New Production of “Susannah” – … Read more

Review: Racette, Aceto, Jovanovich in Brilliant New Production of “Susannah” – San Francisco Opera, September 6, 2014

In a few weeks, Carlisle Floyd’s great opera “Susannah” will be 60 years old. To place that fact in the context of other operas in the standard repertory, consider that when “Susannah” had its premiere, Puccini’s “Turandot” was 29 years old and George Gershwin and DuBose Heyward’s “Porgy and Bess” was only 20 years old. “Susannah’s” … Read more

Review: Sondra Radvanovsky’s Stunning Season Opening “Norma” – San Francisco Opera, September 5, 2014

For the first time in the 92-year old history of the San Francisco Opera, Bellini’s “Norma” was chosen to launch the company’s Fall season. The role of Norma, the Druid priestess whose secret affair with a Roman proconsul has produced two children, is considered a pinnacle of  early 19th century bel canto Italian opera. Illinois soprano Sondra Radvanovsky … Read more