Category Archives: Music

MUTI AND THE CSO RETURN

Classical music organizations have always looked for ways to expand their repertoire beyond the tried-and-true canon. New symphonies and operas have been commissioned almost from the beginning of the group’s founding. The problem is that the new works have a short life span; few, if any, ever have a life beyond their premiere. Artistic directors […]

NEW WEBSITE: THE S YMBOLIC WORLD- Chesterton for the 21st Century

                  G.K. Chesterton called them  fairy tales. They inspired C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien. SOME solemn and superficial people (for nearly all very superficial people are solemn) have declared that the fairy-tales are immoral; they base this upon some accidental circumstances or regrettable incidents in the war […]

IN THE SEASON OF PARSIFAL

The coincidence of a world-wide pandemic and the liturgical season of Lent may prompt some people, stuck at home, to consider Richard Wagner’s masterpiece, PARSIFAL. Set in a mythological world in which the land is suffering because the king is dying, a young Holy Fool, so naive that he doesn’t even know his name, arrives […]

THE MET’S AGRIPPINA: STELLAR MUSIC, UNFORTUNATE STAGING

Librettist Vincenzo Grimani had a wonderful idea for a comic opera: a neo-classical comedy of manners featuring history’s most monstrous tyrants as the main characters! The comic incongruity would be enormous, as  the murderous, depraved butchers of Rome’s ancient past acted with impeccable decorum and good taste. Imagine seeing Nero and his court in a […]

THE MET’S PORGY AND BESS: It’s Got Plenty of Vigor and Talent

The distinguished opera historian and critic Charles Osborne considers George Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess to be “the most successful American contribution to twentieth century opera.”[i] Like all works for the stage, the final product is the result of a collaboration among many creative artists working to transform the play Porgy into a musical work. The […]