Teddy Roosevelt, the Chicago Cubs, & operas by women at the MetHumour
The Metropolitan Opera is gearing up for its production of Kaaija Saariaho’s L’amour de loin, which runs December 1-29; it marks the first opera by a woman to go up at the Met since Ethel Smyth’s Der Wald in 1903.
On the one hand, this is great news. There are indeed operas - and good ones - written by women, and Saariaho’s mesmerizing tale of 12th-century troubadour Jaufré Rudel is one of them. On the other hand, it’s fairly stunning that after Der Wald, there was a 113-year wait for the Met (the Met, for goodness’ sake!) to stage a second opera by a woman composer.
"Further signs of the Apocalypse - Met puts on opera written by woman." https://t.co/w50JHt3n6j— PianistswithKittens (@PianistswKitten) November 25, 2016
The Met Opera hasn't performed a work written by a woman IN OVER A CENTURY??? https://t.co/DcIJ5KiSOc— erin mccann (@mccanner) November 25, 2016
And just to put into perspective just how long it’s been since 1903:
The last time the Met Opera performed a work by a woman, women couldn't vote. https://t.co/ng4EhsdC52— erin mccann (@mccanner) November 25, 2016
So, the Cubs World-Series drought was actually SHORTER than the Met's performing-an-opera-by-a-woman drought? https://t.co/w43WlpEYk8— PianistswithKittens (@PianistswKitten) November 25, 2016
At this point, @mccanner seemed just about done:
The last time the Met Opera performed a work by a woman TEDDY ROOSEVELT WAS THE FUCKING PRESIDENT https://t.co/DcIJ5KiSOc— erin mccann (@mccanner) November 25, 2016
Twitter fun aside, we’re excited to see the combination of Saariaho’s trance-inducing music, Robert Lepage’s notorious visual feasts, and the small-but-mighty cast of Eric Owens as Jaufré Rudel, Susanna Phillips as Clémence, and Tamara Mumford as Pèlerin (The Pilgrim).
And, who knows? If the Met keeps up their newly revived habit of staging operas by women, they’ll soon join the ranks of illustrious companies like Santa Fe Opera, Minnesota Opera, Tapestry Opera, Opera Philadelphia, and the Canadian Opera Company.