By Rebecca Schmid
BERLIN – In Graham Vick’s new staging of Benjamin
Britten’s final opera, it was hard to reconcile Deutsche Oper Berlin’s high musical standards with a production that seemed to spurn any sense of Apollonian beauty.
By John Fleming
MIAMI – Jorge Martín’s Before Night Falls, which deals in freedoms sexual, political, and artistic, received its second production, by the Florida Grand Opera. The work was inspired by the charismatic gay Cuban writer Reinaldo Arenas.
By Nancy Malitz
CHICAGO – many words of love, freely inspired by Winterreise, took its bow at the Chicago Symphony under Riccardo Muti and travels east in early 2018. Its imaginative arc suggests the earth breathing or, perhaps, sighing.
By Richard S. Ginell
LONG BEACH, Calif. – In what is one of Philip Glass’ most fascinating operas, the story of Walt Disney in The Perfect American is given its U.S. premiere by plucky Long Beach Opera. But don’t expect the Disney family to approve.
By Michael Anthony
MINNEAPOLIS – The Minnesota Opera gave the world premiere of William Bolcom’s Dinner at Eight, a calamitous tale of Depression-era America and a circle of the dysfunctional rich, after the play by Kaufman and Ferber.
By Nancy Malitz
CHICAGO – Esa-Pekka Salonen likens his cadenza-rich Cello Concerto, premiered by Yo-Yo Ma, to a comet with a tail. Now headed to New York, London, and Hamburg, it shimmers with hypnotic counterpoint and digital loops.
By Paul E. Robinson
DIGITAL REVIEW – Robert Mann had it all. Endurance. Discipline. Love of music. He led the Juilliard String Quartet for 51 years and some 6,000 performances. At 96, the violinist looks back on a life that seems almost impossible.
By Colin Eatock
TORONTO – Armed with a quasi-Wagnerian ethos, R. Murray Schafer’s massive, twelve-part cycle called Patria dwarfs Wagner’s Ring. Now Soundstreams has fashioned Odditorium from four excerpts, with a part for singing head.