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Mostly Met

Mostly Met

BY DAVID SHENGOLD | Busy with several choral groups, Kent Tritle conducted the Oratorio Society’s invigorating Carnegie “Messiah” on December 18. The orchestra proved adequate if not exceptional, though trumpeter Scott McIntosh scored alongside Dashon Burton’s lively, well-projected bass-baritone in their marvelous joint aria. This venerable amateur chorus makes an impressive sound, not always flawless […]

Rossini’s Revolution Won’t Be Televised

Rossini’s Revolution Won’t Be Televised

BY ELI JACOBSON | At its premiere at the Paris Opéra in 1829, Gioachino Rossini’s “Guillaume Tell” (“William Tell”) created a revolution that influenced Verdi, Donizetti, Berlioz, Meyerbeer, and Wagner, changing the course of opera in the 19th century. It was the final opera of Rossini’s career — he retired at age 37. “Tell” has […]

Tudor Queens  

Tudor Queens  

BY DAVID SHENGOLD | Sondra Radvanovsky –– one of the world’s most ambitious sopranos and, in the right roles, one of the most capable — has embarked on a huge project this Met season. Setting aside the weightier Verdi scores in which she’s pretty close to matchless today — “Ernani,” “Un ballo in maschera,” “I vespri […]

New Starts

New Starts

BY DAVID SHENGOLD | September brought good news to New York’s opera world. The American Opera Projects premiered a fine new work of unusual interest to the LGBT community, Laura Kaminsky’s “As One.” And the Metropolitan, after bruising labor negotiations, opened on time, with an uneven new staging of Mozart’s “Marriage of Figaro” and a […]

Martyrs and Tartars

Martyrs and Tartars

BY DAVID SHENGOLD | The first time I went to hear Handel’s oratorio “Theodora,” I assumed I would be seeing lurid tales of the Byzantine streetwalker turned empress. Hardly. This extremely sober, extremely beautiful work concentrates on — thank you, Amanda Wingfield! — Christian martyrs in ancient Antioch. The February 2 Carnegie audience seemed to appreciate […]