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  • Un Ballo in Maschera (A Masked Ball)

    Verdi Opera Produced by Livermore Valley Opera

    By: Victor Cordell - Mar 14th, 2018

    Ballo is striking and the score compels from beginning to end with highly melodious arias, ensembles, and orchestral interludes. What it lacks is any “Top 40” type hits, but it really doesn’t matter because every element thrills without being overly familiar. Yet, highlights do exist, and they are spread widely among the roles.

  • Northern Spain

    The Basque Country

    By: Zeren Earls - Mar 12th, 2018

    The Basque region of northern Spain stands out with its beautiful coastline and unique culture. In addition to being historic towns with notable architecture, the cities of Bilbao, Guernica, San Sebastian and Pamplona boast a vibrant contemporary life flavored with local charm. The network of ancient pilgramage routes, the Camino de Santiago (Way of Saint James) also stretches through this region.

  • Pierre Aimard at Carnegie Hall

    A Slew of Interesting Piano Works

    By: Paul J. Pelkonen - Mar 10th, 2018

    There is no question that the French pianist Pierre-Laurent Aimard is among the most innovative and forward thinking masters of the keyboard working today. Carnegie Hall was the stage for a recent performance.

  • Murder on the Orient Express

    Agatha Christie Classic at Hartford Stage

    By: Karen Isaacs - Mar 10th, 2018

    In case you don’t remember the plot, the mystery begins in Istanbul where in the mid-1920s, a number of passengers board the famed train, the Orient Express, for a trip to England. Surprisingly (it is winter) the first class carriage is full. One of the passengers is the famed Belgium detective Hercule Poirot returning to London from a vacation. The play begins with a brief scene of a little girl being abducted.

  • Gloucester Stage Company 2018

    Madame Defarge Launches Season May 11

    By: Charles Giuliano - Mar 08th, 2018

    Gloucester Stage Company Artistic Director Robert Walsh and Managing Director Jeff Zinn, announce the six-play lineup for Gloucester Stage’s 39th Season of professional theater in Gloucester, Massachusetts.

  • Orpheus and Oedipus Meet at Emmanuel Music

    Three Modernist Works Investigate Myths

    By: David Bonetti - Mar 07th, 2018

    Stravinsky's "Oedipus Rex" is a bizarre hybrid, an opera-oratorio set to a text by Jean Cocteau. Emmanuel Music paired it with two works about Orpheus, another denizen of the land of the Green myths. In their works, both Matthew Aucoin and John Harrison, composers with local connections, showed their debt to Stravinsky.

  • New York Philharmonic Plays Brahms and Prokoviev

    Jaap Van Sweden Offers Pavorites

    By: Paul J. Pelkonen - Mar 06th, 2018

    The New York Philharmonic just went on tour. However, before the orchestra caught a Saturday flight to Japan last week, they played four evening concerts under its new music director Jaap van Zweden. The program, heard Friday night, eschewed the usual tripartite musical evening for a pairing of heavyweight favorites: the D minor Piano Concerto by Johannes Brahms, and the Fifth Symphony of Serge Prokofiev.

  • Disco Pigs by Enda Walsh

    At Irish Repertory Theatre

    By: Edward Rubin - Mar 06th, 2018

    Enda Walsh has often suggested that what interests him “is about me actually getting through the day.” And indeed, the three works of Walsh’s that I did see, Once, Lazarus (2015) which he co-wrote with David Bowie, and the 22-year-old Disco Pigs, which won awards at the Dublin Fringe Festival (1996) and the Edinburgh Festival (1997), follows these same ideas.

  • Karen Zacharias' Spoof of Telenovela.

    Destiny of Desire at Oregon Shakespeare

    By: Victor Cordell - Mar 05th, 2018

    On the surface, Destiny of Desire can certainly be enjoyed as a frivolous cream puff and that alone. But the playwright is going for something more. Played in a campy style, the laughs cascade like a thundering waterfall, and the audience howls of recognition and appreciation make you think you’re in Guadalajara rather than Ashland, Oregon.

  • Bamboozled by Patricia Milton

    World Premiere at at Berkeley City Club

    By: Victor Cordell - Mar 05th, 2018

    As a producer of new theatrical works, Central Works’ undertakings are always a crapshoot, but they usually beat the odds. In resident playwright Patricia Milton’s Bamboozled, they have tossed a winning number.

  • The Girl Who Knew Too Much

    Penny Arcade at Joe's Pub

    By: Edward Rubin - Mar 09th, 2018

    For three Tuesdays at Joe's Pub at Public Theatre in New York the audience attends a rehearsal of a work in progress, The Girl Who Knew Much, by the performance artist Penny Arcade.

  • 68th Berlinale, 2018

    February 15-25, Germany

    By: Angelika Jansen - Mar 01st, 2018

    In general, the 68th Berlinale may be defined as a quest of women attempting to be heard and seen. Seven of twelve prizes went to women, an astounding conclusion, especially since most of the contributions were more on the quiet side and not on the ‘#me too’ loudness. 385 films were screened and 300,000 moviegoers were counted, cold weather or not.

  • Steinberg/ATCA Finalists Announced

    Award Honors Promising New Plays

    By: Aaron Krause - Mar 03rd, 2018

    A panel of critics has narrow down a list of new plays to receive the Harold and Mimi Steinberg/ATCA New Play Award Annual honor singles out most promising works which premiered professionally outside NYC during 2017. This year's crop of plays tackle topics from preserving Shakespeare's words to refugees fleeing wars

  • This Random World by Steven Dietz

    At North Coast Repertory’

    By: Jack Lyons - Mar 03rd, 2018

    “This Random World”, written by prolific playwright Steven Dietz, draws from the idiosyncrasies of ‘American Millennials’ and ‘Generation X’ -ers on how they process information, situations, and unexpected opportunities in our digital age.

  • Christine Goerke Unleashes Elektra

    Hezet-Seguin Leads the Metropolitan Opera Production

    By: Paul J. Pelkonen - Mar 03rd, 2018

    There comes a time in the career of an opera singer when they are the artist of the moment. For Christine Goerke, the American dramatic soprano who sang the title role of Elektra at the Metropolitan Opera, that time is now. Goerke has sung the role on other stages to great acclaim, both here and elsewhere. However Thursday night was a watershed: the dramatic soprano's long-awaited return to singing major Strauss roles on America's largest operatic stage.

  • In The Body Of The World by Eve Ensler

    Diane Paulus Directs New Post Vagina Monologue

    By: Edward Rubin - Feb 28th, 2018

    Eve Ensler is best known for The Vagina Monologues. In The Body of The World, a theatricalization of her 2013 book by the same name at the Manhattan Theatre Club’s New York City Center currently running through March 25, Ensler returns to the stage with a vengeance.

  • Henry V by William Shakespeare

    Produced by Oregon Shakespeare Festival

    By: Victor Cordell - Mar 02nd, 2018

    Oregon Shakespeare Festival has cleverly organized the productions of the three plays which involve King Henry V. Two were offered last summer – Henry IV – Part 1 and Henry IV – Part 2. In those plays, one of the main characters is Prince Harry, also known as Hal, who would become King Henry V. Despite being heir to the throne, Hal was a dissolute wastrel who consorted with Falstaff and his derelict followers.

  • Sense and Sensibility by Kate Hamill

    Produced by Oregon Shakespeare Festiva

    By: Victor Cordell - Mar 02nd, 2018

    In the Jane Austen catalogue, Sense and Sensibility has always played poor sister to Pride and Prejudice. Perhaps it’s a marketing issue with the latter having the more powerful packaging (i.e.: its title). At the core of this story is a searing indictment of 19th century British laws, mores, and practices that contemporary feminists should cleave to in remembrance of the bad old days.

  • Dudamel Conducts the Vienna Philharmonic

    Carnegie Hall Hosts

    By: Paul J. Pelkonen - Feb 26th, 2018

    Sunday's matinee concert, the third of three this weekend at Carnegie Hall, the great Vienna Philharmonic eschewed the Mozart and Beethoven for a refreshing focus elsewhere. For this concert, the orchestra and current guest conductor Gustavo Dudamel agreed to play symphonies by Charles Ives and Piotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, whose only common thread was the unconventional and innovative nature of their work.

  • Live Streaming a Chamber Music Master Class

    Associated Chamber Music Players Spearheads the Drive

    By: Susan Hall - Feb 26th, 2018

    The Associated Chamber Music Players (ACMP) live streamed a master class from the Opera Center in New York. Aspiring chamber music performers across the globe were invited to watch, learn and participate by asking questions.

  • The Look of PyeongChang Winter Olympics

    Branding Is Colorful But Not Visually Overwhelming

    PyeongChang Olympics
    By: Mark Favermann - Feb 25th, 2018

    The Olympic Look of the Games is the visual and environmental expression of a particular Olympic Games. At the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Games, the designers not only created a Korean signature, but a more elegant statement of the Winter celebration of athletic achievement.

  • Lynn Nottage’s Intimate Apparel

    At Conn's Playhouse on Park

    By: Karen Isaacs - Feb 25th, 2018

    In Intimate Apparel we see four women, three of whom have learned to abandon their fantasies and make choices based on the reality of the world. Each has made a “bargain” and each longs for what she has sacrificed.

  • Jerry Springer, the Opera at The New Group

    Smash London Hit Transfers to New York

    By: Susan Hall - Feb 22nd, 2018

    An obsession with the Jerry Springer show grew into Jerry Springer, the Opera. The show was a smash hit on London’s West End over a decade go. Tentative stabs at transfer across the pond are now fixed in a production by The New Group. Scott Elliott, artistic director of The New Group sensed that the time was now. After all, we have a reality show host in the White House.

  • Dudamel Leads Vienna at Carnegie

    Circumstance Without Pomp

    By: Paul J. Pelkonen - Feb 24th, 2018

    The Vienna Orchestra's horns and low brass displayed their customary control in the opening phrases before the strings took the lyric theme. They were answered by the horns, which, true to their conservative manifesto, still play the narrow-bore instruments in F with the antique pumpenvalve system, invented (like the Vienna Philharmonic itself) in the 1840s. Gustavo Dudamel led the piece dutifully, knowing full well that the Vienna players are the masters of this music.

  • NYCity Opera's Anna Caterina Antonacci

    A Rare Appearance in New York

    By: Susan Hall - Feb 23rd, 2018

    Anna Caterina Antonacci is a chanteuse supreme who rarely performs in New York. Michael Capasso, the General Director of the New York City Opera, induced Antonacci to give two concerts at Carnegie Hall. Perhaps she will come here to perform in an opera soon.

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