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February 5, 2017

Cultural Best of 2016: Opera and Other Feasts

Thinking back, as January invites us to do, my mind leaps to Santa Fe Opera as the high point of the year. Not just because I […]
February 4, 2017

Two World Premieres at San Francisco Ballet — for Better or Worse

It started with the best, in Program 1: Twin brothers groomed by John Neumeier’s Hamburg Ballet—Jiri Bubenicek, who progressed from dancer to dance maker, and Otto […]
December 21, 2016

Letter to a Man – Robert Wilson and Mikhail Baryshnikov

A Dark, Arid Exercise of Perfection   Talking about a  new piece by the creative tandem Robert Wilson/Mikhail Baryshnikov without enthusiasm means there has to be […]
October 9, 2016

Seduction With Words And Music: Don Giovanni

No such dilemmas about sex in the other major achievement of Santa Fe’s opera season: Mozart’s Don Giovanni in a production by Ron Daniels, conducted with […]
September 22, 2016

Seduction With Words And Music : Capriccio

What comes first in opera, what gets the pride of place: words or music? Prima le parole, doppo la musica? Or, Prima la musica, doppo le […]
September 20, 2016

Samuel Barber’s “Vanessa”

Vanessa is considered a “Gothic” opera because Barber’s partner, Gian Carlo Menotti (the composer and librettist), wrote the libretto inspired by the “Seven Gothic Tales” by […]
July 10, 2016

“Don Carlo”- Star-Studded Night at the Opera

Verdi’s Don Carlo has it all: passion and politics, the combat between church and stage, a mortal father-son conflict, a romance of broken hearts, dangerous jealousies, […]
June 23, 2016

Janacek’s ‘Jenufa’ at SF Opera: End of the Season(s)

I’ve always had a particular fondness for San Francisco Opera’s trio of Summer Operas. They have at times been creatively grouped under a theme like “Gamble […]
June 10, 2016

“Tacky, Tawdry, and Tasteless” :Carmen

Carmen (Irene Roberts) as a hapless little street whore who takes her panties off to straddle her Don José (Brian Jagde) in a parking lot? And […]
May 26, 2016

Swimmer: Yuri Possokhov’s Multimedia Ballet

  Young ballet choreographers show a penchant for literature. British wonder boy Liam Scarlett recently based a ballet on a poem by William Blake (reviewed in […]