Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Held Hostage

Lyric Opera of Chicago has just announced a commission for the 2015-16 season: an opera by Peruvian composer Jimmy Lopez, with libretto by Nilo Cruz, based on Ann Patchett's novel Bel Canto. This is part of the Renee Fleming Initiative; the singer in Bel Canto was supposed inspired, in part, by Fleming. Stephen Wadsworth directs; Andrew Davis conducts; Danielle de Niese takes the soprano lead.

I hated Bel Canto so much I threw it against the wall 100 pages in, wishing that the terrorists would open fire, already. So I can't tell you how the story ends, but I can tell you that I found one musical gaffe and one possible medical gaffe in those 100 pages.

As Alex Ross noted, it's good to see a commission going to a genuinely new face, and I hope the opera is a resounding success. The subject matter may keep me away, though.

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