Monday, September 15, 2008

Compare and Contrast 11

I skipped out on the premier of The Bonesetter's Daughter this past Saturday - I'll catch it at a later date - but here's a roundup of reviews:
  • Janos Gereben in SFCV; he is skeptical about the music (not a direct link because the permanent link won't exist until tomorrow)
  • Joshua Kosman is enthused in the Chronicle.
  • Anthony Tommasini has mixed feelings in the Times
  • Opera Tattler finds the characters caricatures and the production "overwrought," with the music unfocussed and too much in the background.
  • Richard Scheinen thinks there's something missing, in the Mercury News
  • Perhaps it's melody, Scheinen speculates. But Marin Alsop, whom he quotes at the end of the article, got it right.
  • Mark Swed in the LA Times calls the score "exotic ear candy" but mostly seems to approve
  • The Standing Room makes fun of it all
  • Civic Center minces no words; "Why does Stewart Wallace continue to get opera commissions?" (Considering how much I remember of Harvey Milk - Jill Grove in the black leather jacket - I was wondering just that myself.)
  • And see The Standing Room's delicious links and commentary
  • Alan Rich says it "must be considered a noble yet abject failure, rarely worthy of its evocative words"
  • Patrick Vaz has more to say about the drama and plotting than any other reviewer; I can't readily summarize except to say that it's mostly negative.
  • Richard Bammer, from the Vacaville Reporter, weighs in.
  • Heidi Waleson of the Wall Street Journal loved it. I'll never trust her judgment again.

8 comments:

cedichou said...

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601088&sid=adeTFq4dqc3k&refer=home

Lisa Hirsch said...

Thank you!

cedichou said...

two more:
http://www.thereporter.com/entertainment/ci_10489230

and
http://www.mercurynews.com/lifestyle/ci_10490816?nclick_check=1

Count me in the column that says that complaining about lack of humming melody is a silly point to make.

Lisa Hirsch said...

Agreed, and thank you.

cedichou said...

Again: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122333297245709331.html?mod=googlenews_wsj

One coming up at sfist, hopefully today..

Lisa Hirsch said...

Thanks! Duly updated - I can't believe she liked it.

cedichou said...

http://outwestarts.blogspot.com/2008/09/skin-and-bone.html

Just found this one. And also:

http://sfist.com/2008/10/10/sf_opera_the_bonesetters_daughter.php

That should be it, now that the run is over!

Lisa Hirsch said...

Thank you again!

I'm planning to write about Bonesetter myself, plus Tommasini has an interesting long article about how new operas fail in today's Times. He's very critical (and rightly so), perhaps more than in his formal review.