Review: “El Pasado Nunca se Termina” – Mariachi Opera Comes Roaring Back to San Diego Opera – April 25, 2015

Two years ago, the most wildly enthusiastic, cheering, vociferous happy audience I’ve seen in the 50-year history of the San Diego Opera (I’ve attended since Day One) greeted Mexican composer Jose “Pepe” Martinez’ opera performed by the Mariachi Vargas De Tescalitlan band. [See my previous review at Operatic mariachi: “Cruzar la Cara de la Luna” – San Diego Opera, … Read more

Review: Houston “Walküre” Showcases Christine Goerke’s Astonishing Brünnhilde, Karita Mattila’s Stunning Sieglinde – Houston Grand Opera, April 25, 2015

“Die Walküre”, Houston Grand Opera’s second installment of their one a year commitment to the four operas of Wagner’s “The Ring of the Nibelungs”, is one of the early steps in Christine Goerke’s ascendancy to the title of world’s reigning Wagnerian dramatic soprano. In the mid-1950s Swedish soprano Birgit Nilsson, with her steel-edged power voice, came … Read more

Review: “Sweeney Todd” at Houston Grand Opera: Nathan Gunn, Director Lee Blakeley Make a Compelling Case for Sondheim as Opera, April 24, 2015

Over the past half decade Parisian opera audiences have taken to heart the dramatic musical works of American composer Stephen Sondheim, presented at the Théâtre du Châtelet. A foursome of Sondheim productions – which included “Into the Woods”, “Sunday in the Park with George” and “A Little Night Music” – were conceived by Scottish director Lee Blakeley. The Houston … Read more