The upcoming Richard Tucker Gala looks to be another impressive evening of music sung by an enticing roster of singers. This year's concert, which some may consider to be a hallmark of the operatic season, especially for those of us who adore special gatherings of star singers who might never otherwise sing together without such an event, is not without its share of expectations, either. The singers who have been tapped to perform for the Richard Tucker Award Gala are Stephanie Blythe, Jospeh Calleja, Elina Garanca, Susan Graham, Anna Netrebko, Hei-Kyung Hong, Maria Guleghina, Zeljko Lucic, James Morris, Matthew Polenzani, Samuel Ramey, and the winner of the 2009 Richard Tucker Award, Stephen Costello. I merely hope that it is broadcast on PBS or on some radio station so that those of us who are not so fortunate as others to have tickets to the performance may at least hear it, but I recall reading in Opera News some years ago that there is a lack of funding to present the Richard Tucker Gala over the air, which makes it all the more pleasing that we were given the enormous benevolence of seeing the 2007 concert last year on PBS. Do I even have to mention the memorable episodes from the artists of that recital? There was Renee Fleming beautifully blending her voice with Joyce DiDonato in Ah, guarda sorella from Mozart's Cosi fan tutte, Diana Damrau and DiDonato singing the duet accompanying the presentation of the rose from Der Rosenkavalier, DiDonato providing her signature aria of recent times, Una voce poco fa from Rossini's Il Barbiere di Siviglia, and Damrau offering a spirited and comedic interpretation of Glitter and be Gay from Bernstein's Candide, to mention most of what I recall from that evening.
If thes performances are to be of any indication as to what the upcoming Richard Tucker Gala shall offer musically, I would remind all of you to mark your calendars for November 22, 2009, to be present at the recital, which begins, I believe, at 6 P.M.
On November 19, 2009, the fifth annual Opera News Awards are to be presented to Martina Arroyo, Joyce DiDonato, who, if I am not very much mistaken, has co-hosted this event before, Gerald Finley, Phillip Glass, and Shirley Verret at Gotham Hall at six o'clock, P.M. The evening is hosted by Susan Graham and Thomas Hampson, who have definitley hosted this event before, and the awards shall be given by Stephanie Blythe, Audra McDonald, Deborah Voigt, Paul Simon, and Danielle De Niese. If only the recipients were singing at the event, it would be a most perfect occasion, but even as it is, it sounds most enjoyable.
I have decided to add a new feature to my posts. If I remember to do it, and if I write at least one post per week, I shall include my favorite performance for the current week from the Met's offerings. This is not to say that I shall have listened to them because I make no promise as to that until the Met's broadcast season begins, but it will provide my readers with some knowledge concerning my tastes in opera. In this first week's choice, I am required to choose two performances, and these are Puccini's Turandot starring Maria Guleghina, Marcello Giordani, Maria Poplavskaya, and Samuel Ramey and Rosinni's Il Barbiere di Siviglia starring Joyce DiDonato, Barry Banks, Franco Vassallo, John Del Carlo, and Roberto Scandiuzzi. Both of these operas run throughout the week, but one can see them both this Saturday, November 7, 2009, with Puccini in the afternoon and Rossini in the evening. Opera rarely gives you anything better that this. Also, remember that Puccini's Turandot is part of the Live in HD series, so go to your local movie theater that offers these glorious spectacles and see it wherever you are in the country.
Thank you for reading this post, and may God continually belss you.