Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Everything Over The Weekend

I have been madly preoccupied of late, which explains why I have not been able to either read the blogs of others or post a new title to my own. Nevertheless, I am delivering another post to the inquiring minds of my followers.

I have recently gotten a position of weekly employment at Poteet Theatre, my local theatrical "home." Jay, after he could cull no one from the ranks of his regular employees, asked me to do some work for him at the theatre. It has since become our task to purge the theatre of anything that is not needed anymore and to organize what remains. The theatre is located in a grand church near downtown Oklahoma City, which has a tall bell-tower adjacent to its sanctuary. It was my duty to clear out one of the five or six floors of this before we could begin the other things we wanted to accomplish, and I was able to complete this within a day. In my next post, I shall provide pictures of our performance space and the sweeping view from the tower and other things in which I think you shall have some interest in seeing for your enjoyment. Anyway, I am to work to this end that I have heretofore briefly described for four more weeks, and then if Jay can find a donor to furnish my wages for the remainder of the year, I am to remain there coming once a week to ensure the maintenance of the theatre. This occupation profits me well and it is pleasant to work where I have so many friends and acquaintances constantly coming and going to and from wherever they will.

On Saturday I did not audition, nor did I listen to the Met's broadcast of Richard Wagner's Das Rheingold. I was unable to audition because neither of my parents would take me to auditions since there was about an inch of snow on the ground. Of all of the weekends for it to snow, this was definitely not the one I should have chosen. It is more incredible to believe when one knows that just the weekend prior, we had temperatures in the 70's across our state! Oklahoma weather can be most enjoyable, but it can also be just as detrimental to one's plans. I was rather disappointed at this since there was no ice upon the roads and my parents went out later in the day, but I am glad that I may still be allowed to work at Poteet as often as I do. As for the Met's broadcast, I missed it for the simple reason that the batteries in my little portable radio went dead. Had I been determined to hear the broadcast, and I was eager to hear Waltraud Meier sing Sieglinde, I could have comandeered someone else's radio from them, but I do not think that God should have looked kindly upon such an action. Besides, there is a good chance that it will be available for download on the Uploads From the Metropolitan Opera website. I am elated at the prospect of hearing the rest of the Met's Ring cycle.

On Sunday, which, may I remind my readers, is supposed to be a day of rest and reflection upon God, my family and I worked on some renovations to our house. These took the larger portion of the day to complete, pro tempore, and we finally sat down to other activities and dinner at around nine o'clock. This practice is not condusive to one's continued well-being, and I do not recommend it, but it was invigorating to make the progress we created.

As for opera, which I have not mentioned in a good while, I have a little to relate. On April 2nd Natalie Dessay will be in the Met Opera Shop from 12:30 - 2:30 P.M. to sign copies of her CD's. Rolando Villazon will be there on April 16th from 2-4 P.M., and Placido Domingo will visit on April 23rd from 2:30 - 5:30 P.M. Renee Fleming was the first to greet customers in the renovated retail space, and here is a picture of her there:

Rolando Villazon has dropped out of the cast of Donizetti's L'Elisir d'Amore, and Massimo Giordano has steeped in for him to sing opposite Angela Gheorghiu for tonight's performance. He has cancelled both of his runs at the Met this season, and it leaves one wondering why he has done so. Last year, if I am not mistaken, he took a sabbatical, and it was allegedly because his voice was not at its best. One wonders if he is losing his instrument, perhaps? His voice does seem rather light on his Opera Recital CD, and perhaps all of these La Boheme performances with Anna Netrebko have taken a toll upon his voice. I hope that we shall hear him on Saturday as Donzetti's "country bumpkin." We still have one more Live in HD event scheduled for this year, and that is Rossini's La Cenerentola. We are promised a grand stroke of luck with the casting of "the other prominent Rossini tenor" Lawrence Brownlee and mezzo-soprano Elina Garanca as Cinderella. Maybe I will go see that since I cannot listen to it over the radio.

As much as Wagner's Ring cycle needs to be heard, think of the three or four broadcasts we might have heard without it expending so many broadcasts! First, we could start with La Cenerentola. Then, there would be Don Giovanni with the excellent cast of Barbara Fritolli, Soile Isokoski, Isabel Bayrakdarian, Samuel Ramey, and Peter Mattei. For our third selection we should be allowed to hear the Cav/Pag double bill with Jose Cura and Nuccia Focile. All for Wagner...

Thanks for reading.

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