OperaWatch

by F. PAUL DRISCOLL

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Cruz, López and Newbury at Lyric
© Andrew Cioffi 2014
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Radvanovsky, ready for LAO
© Gregory Downer 2014
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Wes Mason
© Michael Cinquino 2014

1.  On July 28, a sculpture of LEONARD BERNSTEIN was unveiled at Tanglewood. The Bernstein sculpture, by PENELOPE JENCKS, is the second in a planned series depicting Tanglewood’s most iconic music figures, made possible through a gift by JOHN WILLIAMS, Boston Pops Laureate Conductor and Tanglewood Artist in Residence. The unveiling festivities, attended by the composer’s daughter NINA BERNSTEIN SIMMONS, began with an all-Bernstein musical program featuring Stephanie Blythe, pianists Alan Smith and Vytas Baksys, BSO associate principal clarinetist Thomas Martin and BSO acting concertmaster Julianne Lee.

2.  On Saturday, November 8, SONDRA RADVANOVSKY makes her Los Angeles recital debut at LOS ANGELES OPERA. Radvanovsky’s recital partner will be pianist Anthony Manoli. Other engagements for the soprano this season include Anna Bolena at Lyric Opera of Chicago (Dec.–Jan.), Norma in San Francisco (Sept.), Barcelona (Feb.) and Munich (June), Aida in Vienna (March) and a return to the Metropolitan Operaas Amelia in Un Ballo in Maschera in April.

3.  JONATHAN BLALOCK, who opened the Opera San Antonio season in September as Burrowing Mole in Fantastic Mr. Fox, begins 2015 as Mozart’s Don Ottavio in Cedar Rapids, Iowa (Jan.). In March, the tenor makes his role debut as the Prince in La Cenerentola for Opera Roanoke.

4.  BEL CANTO, the opera based on Ann Patchett’s best-selling novel, had a workshop at Lyric Opera of Chicago on July 11. The first collaboration for composer JIMMY LÓPEZ and Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright NILO CRUZ, Bel Canto will have its world premiere at Lyric in December 2015 in a production directed by Kevin Newbury and conducted by Andrew Davis.

5.  WES MASON makes his role debut as Ford in Nicolai’s The Merry Wives of Windsor at Fargo-Moorhead Opera in November. February 2015 finds the baritone at Kentucky Opera for his first Stanley Kowalski in Previn’s Streetcar Named Desire, followed by role debuts as Jonathan Reed in Siren Song at Hawaii Opera Theatre (March) and the title role in Thomas’s Hamlet in Fort Worth (May).

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6.   WARNER CLASSICS has released a groundbreaking remastered edition of the complete recordings of MARIA CALLAS. The new Maria Callas edition is available in a sixty-nine-disc boxed set of thirty-nine studio recordings made between 1949 and 1969. Titles in the set, which will include Callas’s earliest recordings for Cetra as well as her iconic work for EMI in the 1950s and ’60s, will also be available individually. spacer 

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Current Issue: October 2014 — VOL. 79, NO. 4