By Paul E. Robinson
DIGITAL REVIEW – Leiser and Caurier’s satirical 2012 production, now on DVD, has Cecilia Bartoli’s Cleopatra singing a Handel aria with a bag over her head, plus mind-bending sex, fantasy and horror that’s over the top.
By Susan Geffen
FORT WORTH – The stakes weren’t all that high at the Seventh Cliburn International Amateur Piano Competition, but the artistic standard was. Thomas Yu, a 38-year-old periodontist from Calgary, Alberta, bested a strong field.
By James L Paulk
BUDAPEST – The appeal of this semi-staged Ring to Wagner enthusiasts is a story of magic, pluck, and luck, but also one of artistic success at a high level. The star is Ádám Fischer, who rivals the greatest Wagnerian conductors.
By Paul Hyde
BREVARD, N.C. – The star of this year’s music festival, opening June 24, may be a new $2.5 million acoustical shell. Director Keith Lockhart plans the Beethoven Ninth, a slate of celebrated soloists, and a new “opera noir” – Falling Angel.
By John W. Lambert
IN MEMORIAM – Robert Paul Commanday, who died in 2015 at the age of 93, was fondly remembered in Charleston, S.C., where the Music Critics Association of North America heard a tribute to his guiding force in a transitional age.
By Richard S. Ginell
LOS ANGELES – David Lang’s anatomy theater begins with an 18th-century public execution – free beer and sausages for the audience – before getting down to gory dissection and organ analysis to determine what made the dead dame tick.
By Rodney Punt
OJAI, Calif. – All but two works at this year’s festival were by women, about which Peter Sellars said, “I’d rather not have to mention that, but there’s something wildly exciting about hearing from the other half of the planet.”
By Bill Rankin
CALGARY – There was a spirit of unabashed sentimentality as well as musical energy when the Calgary Philharmonic and a sold-out audience said farewell to Roberto Minczuk, who is moving on after a decade as music director.