Sweeney Todd, SF Opera

I must confess I have always preferred my horror on an intimate scale. That means a television set rather than a multiplex and, most particularly, Stephen Sondheim’s macabre masterwork, “Sweeney Todd,” as a chamber opera, rather than a Broadway musical.  ...

Gianni Schicchi & Pagliacci

For the opening of its 30th anniversary season, the LA Opera has turned to Hollywood for a 2 hour and 40 minute double bill: Woody Allen's production of "Gianni Schicchi" and Franco Zeffirelli's "Pagliacci." The Chandler was packed for opening  ...

Heart of Darkness

A "dark" subject drawn from a famous book. A US premiere from an opera from the other side of the pond. Prestige. Glamour. Well, many operas and films aren't that different from people.They look or sound profound, but aren't.  ...

Cold Mountain, World Premiere

First there was Charles Frazier’s 1997 National Book Award-winning novel, “Cold Mountain.” a Civil War romance that sold over three million copies. Then there was the 2003 Academy Award-winning movie, which starred Nicole Kidmann, Jude Law and Renée Zellweger. “Cold  ...

Salome

        “The secret of love is greater than the secret of death,” sings Salome, late in Strauss’ opera, preparing to kiss a bloody mess, the severed head of John the Baptist. Perhaps the  ...

Daughter of the Regiment

Opening the 2015 Summer Season in its stunning setting at the open-air Crosby Theater in Santa Fe, Ned Canty’s production of “Daughter of the Regiment” features Anna Christy as a Marie with a smile that could light up Broadway; Alek  ...

Rigoletto

Any opera with a rape as its central dramatic event is bound to be a little twisted. That’s Rigoletto in a nutshell. It’s a non-romantic, romantic opera. The plot not only revolves around the violent deflowering of Gilda, the court  ...

Equinox

Alejandro Escuer's Mexico City-based quintet Onix Ensamble --  Escuer, flute; Fernando Dominguez, clarinet; Edith Ruiz, piano; Abel Romero, violin; Edgardo Espinosa, cello -- turns 20 this year when just surviving in the new music world is a major achievement. I've  ...

Kinan Azmeh

We like to think that chamber music is an acquired taste but what is chamber music but music played in a room by a few people for a few people or for thousands ? So it's not just the Mexico-  ...