Gogol, Redux

Kentridge, WilliamYesterday was Nikolai Gogol’s birthday, born 1809. When he was about 20, the Russian writer spent his time running around St. Petersburg trying to land a civil service job. But he dreamed of writing poems and stories. So he self-published a piece he had worked on for years.
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Sing for Your Life: The National Council Auditions

2010NATCOwinners_1046Nathaniel Peake distinguished himself early on with a rich, earnest delivery of “Ah, la paterna mano” from Verdi’s Macbeth, while Rachel Willis-Sørensen provided a searching account of “Einsam in trüben Tagen” from Wagner’s Lohengrin. Via The Metropolitan Opera, read more

Kentridge: “Are both a credible nose?”

thenoseII“We knew we wanted the nose dancing and we had the footage of Anna Pavlova. But in the film she is a white figure against a black background,” Kentridge said, explaining the difficulties of creating the best effect for projection. “We inverted the image so she becomes a negative, a dark figure against a white background. We animated that with the nose on top of her, and then re-inverted the image.” Via The Metropolitan Opera, read more

Maestro Muti in Attila Rehearsals

mutiMaestro Riccardo Muti lightly raised his baton and then paused. “I know I am supposed to say I am very happy to be here, but it is true—I am very happy to be here.” Then he began leading the orchestra through the Attila prelude. Occasionally he stopped, injecting quick direction: “Don’t delay.” “It’s a bit faster.” “Now! Fortissimo! Boom!” Via The Metropolitan Opera, read more

Of Tosca, Change and Booing

booSpeakers deliberated on the phenomenon of the boo, even demonstrating and analyzing the acoustic carrying power of the word itself … a sign of passion preferable to quiet muttering. “[It’s] a good thing that’s creating a conversation about the nature of what we’re doing,” [Bartlett Sher] Via The Metropolitan Opera, read more