Meyerbeer’s Robert le diable paved the way for major works by Meyerbeer himself, Halévy, Verdi, Wagner (in German), Saint-Saëns, Massenet, and others — and this splendid performance shows why.
Opera Album Review: Saint-Saëns’s Delightful Skewering of the West’s Fantasies of Japan
A major contribution to the recorded repertory, making clear just how effective Saint-Saëns’s The Yellow Princess could be on stage, its nowadays objectionable title repudiated by its varied and nuanced approach to the evocation of the exotic.
Opera CD Review: Two Splendid World-Premiere Recordings Rediscover an Exotic Master of Song — Reynaldo Hahn
Attention is being paid today to talented composers who have been sidelined or disdained because of their race, ethnicity, religion, or sexual orientation. Reynaldo Hahn qualifies on several counts.
Opera Album Review: Saint-Saëns’s Opera about a Little Silver Bell Works Its Magic
The world-premiere recording of a first rate production of a brilliant, fantastical opera, unstaged and unheard since 1914.
Opera Album Review: Offenbach in a Spanish Mood, in a Top-notch First Recording
Bravo to the Bru Zane folks for this latest triumph! I encourage opera lovers to get to know this treasurable Spanish (or faux-Spanish) work by the pioneering master of nineteenth-century operetta.
Best Opera and Vocal (Recordings, Books, and a Performance), 2019
This year has brought a bumper crop of wonderful recordings of unusual operas — and one unusual recording of a repertory staple: Gounod’s Faust.
Opera Review: Ready for a Very Different “Faust”? You Should Be!
Even taking into consideration my several objections, this Faust is one of the most accomplished and intriguing opera releases of recent years.
Opera Album Review: Muslims vs. Christians in 10th-Century Spain, Portrayed in an 1881 Gounod Opera (World-Premiere Recording)
Gounod was no mere purveyor of gentle sentiments. This 1881 opera, superbly performed, shows plenty of drama and grit.
Classical CD Reviews: Offenbach’s “La Périchole,” Aaron Jay Kernis’ Orchestral Works, and Baiba Skride plays Bartók
Marc Minkowski’s recording of Jacques Offenbach’s La Périchole pays the composer a handsome tribute in his birthday year; violinist Baiba Skride’s new all-Bartók disc is one of the year’s best.