The Well-Tempered Ear

Classical music news: Riccardo Muti gives up opera at Salzburg Festival. Deborah Voigt backs of out of Chicago role. Placido Domingo fights piracy. Metropolitan Opera baritone Cornell MacNeil dies. Annna Netrebko to open a restauranht. Andre Rieu premieres a waltz by Anthony Hopkins. | July 30, 2011

By Jacob Stockinger

What is it about opera singers? They always seem to make news, no matter they do.

If they take on a role, it’s news. If they leave a role, it’s news. When they start a career, it’s news. When they end a career, it’s news. The life of many opera starts is … well, operatic.

True, it’s not always about opera stars – conductors also loom large.

Especially opera conductors.

Big egos get big coverage, and I guess opera singers and conductors are the big celebrities of classical music in the commercialized and glamor-hungry culture we live in.

Just take a look at some of the events in this week’s revival:

ITEM: Deborah Voigt (below, as Brunnhilde in Wagner’s “Die Walkure“) backs out of Strauss revival at Lyric Opera of Chicago:

http://www.suntimes.com/entertainment/6574933-417/deborah-voigt-withdraws-from-strauss-revival-at-lyric.html

ITEM: After 40 years, Chicago Symphony Orchestra maestro Riccardo Muti (below) will give up doing operas at the annual summer Salzburg Festival:

http://www.chicagotribune.com/entertainment/chi-muti-salzburg-20110727,0,6530748.story

ITEM: Superstar tenor Placido Domingo (below) joins the fight against music piracy:

http://www.npr.org/2011/07/28/138774838/last-word-in-business

 ITEM: Red-hot Finnish conductor John Storgards (below) fills in for James Levine at Tanglewood – and draws raves:

http://www.berkshireeagle.com/ci_18497752?source=most_emailed

ITEM: Metropolitan Opera baritone Cornell MacNeil (below) has died at 88:

http://www.gramophone.co.uk/classical-music-news/cornell-macneil-has-died

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/18/arts/music/cornell-macneil-operatic-baritone-dies-at-88.html?_r=3

ITEM:  Diva Anna Netrebko (below) is turning restaurateur:

http://translate.google.com/translate?js=n&prev=_t&hl=en&ie=UTF-8&layout=2&eotf=1&sl=de&tl=en&u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.stern.de%2Fkultur%2Fmusik%2Fstern-interview-mit-anna-netrebko-klassik-diva-wird-gastronomin-1708060.html&act=url

ITEM: Schmalzy violin virtuoso and waltz king Andre Rieu gives the world premiere of a waltz by Sir Anthony “Hannibal the Cannibal Lector” Hopkins, who has apparently composed a lot of music:

ITEM: The annual summer rites of Richard Wagner (below) in Bayreuth got started this past week. Here’s an account of opening day:

http://www.npr.org/blogs/deceptivecadence/2011/07/25/138677467/let-bayreuth-begin-opening-day-for-the-annual-wagner-festival


Posted in Classical music

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