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Subject: Re: Gay Pride Operas
From: Maxwell Paley <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Maxwell Paley <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Thu, 29 Jun 2017 09:08:54 -0700
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I think there's a big difference between an definite gay theme vs. a potential overtone of homoeroticism.

I've seen a homoerotic attraction portrayed between Don Carlo and Rodrigo that remains latent until Carlo realizes Rodrigo is dying. There was a particularly strong sense of that in a 1998 San Francisco production with Sergei Larin as Carlo and Anthony Michaels Moore as Rodrigo. Larin's Carlo erupted with physical affection for Rodrigo

Homosexuality has been implied in some productions of "Ballo in Maschera" that resort to the Swedish characters and setting, particularly with Gustavus. It does create some cognitive dissonance with regard to his passion for Amelia.

In both "Billy Budd" and "Death in Venice" there are interpretations that do or don't involve specific homosexuality. Sometimes it's clear that Claggart has repressed (or suppressed) lust for Billy, but it can also be portrayed that he's just incredibly jealous of Billy's ease, likeability and masculine beauty. Similarly Ashenbach can be experiencing an overwhelming sexual attraction to Tadzio, or Tadzio can represent a more abstract ideal of carefree beauty that is opposite to Aschenbach's previously heavily disciplined life.

Max Paley

Sent from my iPhone

> On Jun 29, 2017, at 08:18, Vesna Danilovic <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> 
> I agree with the previous posters about some questionable inclusions though
> don't want to criticize the article because the intentions are honorable,
> except to say that the list curiously omits some openly gay themes or
> characters such as, already mentioned, HARVEY MILK and DEATH IN VENICE. For
> characters, we can also add Countess Geschwitz in LULU, the first openly
> gay character in any opera (someone please correct me if there are earlier
> examples). Or perhaps it would be a good occasion to celebrate those
> musicians and composers who made strides toward the culture of tolerance in
> many ways, including LGBT.
> 
> Vesna
> 
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