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Mermaids, Merimée, Housman, and Holofernes

Mermaids, Merimée, Housman, and Holofernes

BY DAVID SHENGOLD | The Met needed a new “Rusalka” to replace Otto Schenk’s antique Vienna-sourced fairy-tale version, which witnessed some extraordinary performances starring Gabriela Benacková and Renee Fleming. Given Mary Zimmerman’s catastrophic history at this theater, what she and her fine design team produced, seen February 2, proved quite creditable and enjoyable — if short […]

A Long Submerged Operatic Jewel Rises Again

A Long Submerged Operatic Jewel Rises Again

BY ELI JACOBSON | Georges Bizet’s “Carmen” is the “C” in the operatic “ABC” triad of most popular works. While “Carmen” has totaled more than 1,000 performances at the Metropolitan Opera, this season’s New Year’s Eve premiere of Bizet’s “Les Pêcheurs de Perles” marked only its fifth Met performance and the first since the 1916-17 season. […]

The French Connection

The French Connection

BY ELI JACOBSON | French opera has become something of a stepchild in the international operatic repertoire — it doesn’t always get the love and attention it needs even in Paris. Its specialists are few and far between, and the French style has become internationalized, losing character, delicacy, and perfume. The Metropolitan Opera, historically a major […]

Oh, Diana!

Oh, Diana!

  BY DAVID NOH | Undoubtedly one of the most exciting opera singers today, Diana Damrau just wrapped an ecstatically received run of performances of Bellini’s “La Sonnambula” at the Met –– and made her triumphant cabaret debut at Le Poisson Rouge, celebrating her solo album, “Forever,” which she calls “the soundtrack of my life.” Opera […]