Wednesday, January 07, 2009

 
The weather, while not catastrophic, is bad enough with snow and "wintry mix" in New England. I'm leaving for New York City today to see the Metropolitan Opera's "new" production of Puccini's still somewhat rarely performed La Rondine in a production that's "been around"--somewhat like the opera's heroine.

La Rondine was supposed to be a Viennese-style operetta, commissioned by a theater in Vienna that wanted the composer at any cost and gave into any demands he made. Among the demands was for something more like an Italian romantic comedy with little or no dialog. World War I put an end toward any obligation to Vienna and Puccini proceeded to write a work that has the essential plot of Verdi's La Traviata (a "fallen" woman who sends away a naive young man who is potentially her salvation), combined with elements of Strauss's Die Fledermaus and Puccini's own early success, La Boheme.




At first glance unrelated, these sets for the first two acts clearly show that the columns cycle through the production, providing a unifying (and economizing) element. London's Royal Opera and the San Francisco Opera have presented Rondine successfully in this production. Opera's "love couple" Angela Gheorghiu and Roberto Alagna headline at the MET.

*******

I finally got around to joining Netflix and we got the first selection on our list, Good Night and Good Luck, yesterday. I think we're going to enjoy the service. I know you can see movies from Netflix on the computer but neither of us is interested in crowding around a laptop for two hours.

Netflix has a fairly good selection. I didn't find Luchino Visconti's Senso, which we became interested in after reading Farley Grainger's book, but did find Topkapi, something I had no success with at several Boston area video stores, even the big chains (which were, to be fair, closing right and left due to the inroads of on-demand and Netflix). There is even a collection of gay-themed films, although hardly exhaustive. Anyway, I'm in the free trial period now but if the service is always as fast as on our first delivery, I'll stay with it.

Comments:
re netflix
you can connect your laptop to your tv set (or cable box) with a very inexpensive cable.

or
you can order ROKU - which now will stream Amazon Video on demand as well as any INSTANT WATCH Netflix items.

needs either a wireless or hard wired network connection.

never see a commercial again - woo!
 
Netflix would be a lost cause around here. i can't get my honey tied up (I mean DOWN) for long enough to watch a movie. Good Night and Good Luck is a great movie!
 
Oops...one more thing: Note to Your Lovely Husband: The three horses have just now been placed back up at the Portland Airport. They have been missing for at least a year or more during some construction....but they're back now!
 
Oooh... you can read the piece I wrote for the San Francisco production by following the link; nice to see from FB that you had a terrific time.

http://sfopera.com/uploads/cast_list/RondineFeature.pdf

Happy New Year!
 
Netflix frutrates me; I have about a dozen movie requests they tell me are not available.
I feel we are playing the Cheese Shop sketch from Monty Python.

PS- My word verification today is PSYCH
 
I love Netflix. I had to join it for a film class that I took last spring, but I was so impressed with the selection and the service that I continued my membership. I'm really happy with it.
 
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