An online petition asking the Metropolitan Opera to dedicate its opening night performance of Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin “to support LGTB people” seeks to connect the Met’s scheduling of Russian artists in a classic Russian opera with an ugly, and terrifying Russian law passed in a political climate of xenophobia … Continue Reading The Met’s Onegin and Gergiev’s Cultural Politics
When I visited St. Petersburg last May, the Mariinsky 2 was still a work zone. Now it’s open. The new building is undistinguished and even quite ugly from the outside. I haven’t seen the inside yet. But I did write about the controversy over its site, cost and design … Continue Reading Fit for a Tsar
Opera News has very kindly given web access to a story I wrote for their July issue, in which I compare fanboy culture to opera culture: Fanboys are not always boys, and they’re not exclusively male. They are fanatical, deeply knowledgeable about their obsessions (sci-fi, video games, anime, comics), and … Continue Reading Educating the privileged elite
Some people hear music through the strangest of portals. There are opera lovers who love only one voice, and they will love any music that voice sings. And there are orchestra fanatics who can’t abide solo recitals or chamber music or–heaven forbid–an evening at the opera. But the oddest of … Continue Reading Bach on the Harp
Opera News has placed online my recent story about Mahler, who despite being one of the greatest vocal composers of all time, never wrote an opera (a few, minor bits of juvenalia notwithstanding).