Saturday Afternoon with Ariadne
It's Saturday, and I want to be entertained. And as if the triumvirate gods of Opera, Internet and Day-Of-Week united forces for bored opera-lovers everywhere, the Metropolitan Opera put up its 1988 production of Ariadne auf Naxos. Directed by Bodo Igesz, the production features James Levine, Kathleen Battle, Jessye Norman, Tatiana Troyanos and Nico Castel. That's right, Nico Castel performs the role of the Haushofmeister. Now, I've seen the DVD of this production before, mostly because it comes with a short documentary showing rehearsal footage with maestro Levine, Jessye Norman and Kathleen Battle. It's fascinating to see moments of conversation between conductor and singer, especially when you can catch glimpses of young Barbara Bonney and Dawn Upshaw as Najade and Echo.
If you're not already a subscriber to Met Opera on Demand, it's at least worth their 7-day free trial offer. It's work and play all in one place.
If you're in need of a live Strauss_-_fix, Pacific Opera Victoria opens their production of Ariadne auf Naxos on February 13, directed by Oriol Tomas and conducted by Timothy Vernon. The cast is full of Canadian talent, featuring Suzanne Rigden, Colleen Skull, Roger Honeywell, J. Patrick Raftery, Virginia Hatfield, Eve-Lyn de la Haye, Aidan Ferguson and Neil Craighead. Find out more info here.
Seen anything good on Opera TV*? Let us know in the comments below.
*Opera TV is not a real thing, but a blanket term I made up for watching opera on things like Met Opera on Demand, YouTube, DVDs, etc.