Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Opera Boston, the adventurous, intelligently run and visionary company that has become Boston's premiere opera company in a surprisingly short period of time, sent this notice out to many of us today:

Dear Friends,

I am very happy to share with you the news that in their December 2009 issue, ARTFORUM, one of the premier magazines devoted to the visual arts, voted our production of Shostakovich’s The Nose one of their top ten musical events of 2009!

We are all honored to keep such august and glamorous company as the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Ojai Music Festival, and the Wooster Group.

Here's the entry on ARTFORUM's site:

9. Dmitri Shostakovich, The Nose, performed by Opera Boston (Cutler Majestic Theatre, Boston) For those who missed the taut, acerbic New England premiere of this speak-truth-to-power production—an “anarchist grenade”—you can catch a version this season at the Met.

I've got a ticket to a performance of the MET's new production this coming spring. They've got a lot more resources than Opera Boston and they've engaged Paolo Szot, the sexy, rich-voiced Argentinian baritone who took a short hiatus from his opera career to star in the current revival of Rodgers and Hammerstein's South Pacific in New York, picking up a Tony award for Leading Man in a Musical in the process. They may well mount a tremendous production, but OB put on a show that could have played New York with pride and won it's own awards in the process.


Oh, and here's the handsome--and out--Mr. Szot, whose nose will desert his face and assume a life of it's own, running around St. Petersburg in the sharp, witty and anarcic opera that Dimitri Shostakovich made of Nikolai Gogol's typically outrageous satire on Czarist Russian society.


With a big tip of the hat to Geoff at Life and Times of a Gay Guy:

Top Ten Anagrams for "Defense of Marriage Act"

10. Free! Free! Satanic dogma!
9. America's negated offer
8. Fanatics referee dogma
7. Fear of Satanic emerged
6. Farce of a disagreement
5. I fear act of same-gender
4. Deceit of free anagrams
3. A farce of it: same-gender
2. A. Gore fancies mate Fred

And the number one anagram for "Defense of Marriage Act":
1. Fear decrease of mating

He IS one sexy baritone. I'd never heard him, but searche out some performances. Stunning! (and thanks for the hat tip!)
Interesting post, thanks for posting.
I only hope the Met isn't importing the cumbersome, design-led Tsypin production from the Mariinsky. It's hard enough to understand what's going on without having it smothered in typical Mariinsky chaos. The sharp Gogolian wit you mention is lost.

As in any case it's bound to be at the Met. The work needs an intimate setting and a theatre director of genius. Szot won't be setting any hearts afluttering in his role but with any luck he may make you laugh.
David--apparently good news for us: the director/designer is William Kentridge and the production is a co-production of the Metropolitan Opera, the Festival d’Aix-en-Provence, and the Opéra National de Lyon. Gergiev is conducting, but his home theater's production is not coming as happened with The Gambler, War and Peace, Mazeppa, and Betrothal in a Monastery.
I am rather new to this blogger-thingy as Joe Jarvis may say, but I have to say how excited I am to find much so, I am going back to 2003 and starting to read it like a book, Will.

I am a fellow New Hamshirian(?) but actually live in the Loire Valley...and have lots of time to read your diaries.

Thankyou in advance!
Okay, I meant to spell, a person registered to vote in Nashua!
Anonymous--I hope you'll be back. You'll find my email address on my profile--it would be nice to hear from you and maybe talk a bit.
Don’t tell my dear friend, Peggy that Paolo Szot is out. She’s in love with him. She went to see South Pacific just to hear Szot and immediately went into heart failure. Honest.
I saw Szot at New York City Opera a couple of years before he hit with such impact in South Pacific. He had a good voice to be sure but his physical presence, total ease on stage, and acting ability made me take serious notice. The fact that he's drop dead gorgeous helped, of course. I'll be seeing him again this spring in Shostakovitch's The Nose at the Metropolitan Opera.
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