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Viewpoint: A Picture of the Future

by F. Paul Driscoll.

Viewpoint Opera News Awards hdl 117
Mary-Jane Lee, Plácido Domingo, Hyesang Park, Sava Vemic and Sophia Muñoz at the 2016 OPERA NEWS Awards
© Dario Acosta

April 9, 2017

Robert Carsen
Christine Goerke
Yannick Nézet-Séguin

Matthew Polenzani

Frederica von Stade

JANUARY IS THE MONTH  when most magazines carry stories about New Year’s resolutions, which usually involve plans for increased exercise or decreased consumption of “bad” foods, alcohol and sweets.Every January we resolve to read more, eat less, travel more, stop smoking, spend more time with friends, family and other loved ones. Fill in the blanks. 

It’s hard to develop a coherent New Year’s resolution that applies to opera; the opera season begins not in January but in the fall, when most theaters roll out their repertory programs. For most opera-lovers, January is the midseason mark, with lots of beautiful music already consumed and plenty more to come in the winter and spring. How to start an action plan for self-improvement halfway through the season?

Here’s a New Year’s resolution that could work for any opera-lover: listen better. Resolve to listen more carefully; resolve to listen to something you’ve never heard before; resolve to hear the passion for music that imbues young voices. This past summer, I heard a truly lovely Bohème at the Glimmerglass Festival. It would be stretching a point to say that it was the best Bohème I ever heard, but it was one of the most memorable—and one of the most satisfactory. Joseph Colaneri conducted an eager young cast whose zest for communicating the human beauty of Puccini’s score made it sound like a brand-new work. The passion of those artists was humbling and inspiring.

Each year at the OPERA NEWS Awards, it is our privilege to share the celebration of our five honorees with some of the very talented young men and women in the Met’s Lindemann Young Artist Development Program. Their presence is a reminder that the future of opera holds a lot of beautiful music. It’s our job to listen for it. spacer 

Viewpoint Driscoll Signature 815
Editor in Chief 

The opinions expressed in OPERA NEWS do not necessarily represent the views of The Metropolitan Opera Guild or The Metropolitan Opera.

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