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Subject: "New Yorkers can't handle Wilson's austerity"
From: Andrew Cooper <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Andrew Cooper <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Mon, 16 Mar 1998 17:18:02 GMT
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My "Guardian" today has a long piece about the Met's LOHENGRIN
(predictably entitled "Lohengrin and bear it") by Martin Kettle.  He
starts off:

"The Metropolitan Opera's audiences know what they like.  They like
top-of-the-range singers, giving excellent performances of favourite
mainstream operas, well conducted by James Levine and presented in
traditional productions, by Franco Zeffirelli if possible.  On the
rare occasions when these time-honoured rules are broken, they make
their displeasure known."

A bit tongue-in-cheek, I think.  Anyway, he liked it, pointing out
that bare stages and virtuoso lighting directors are nothing new,
especially in Wagner.  However, he doesn't mention what I take to be
the main sticking-point with opera-l'ers who've seen it - the
gestures and movements that the singers are required to perform.
Bizarrely, the only two singers who get a mention are Heppner and
Polaski, so this isn't a proper review.  I should add that Kettle
isn't the paper's regular opera critic - he usually writes political
stuff for them - and I frequently don't agree with what he writes
when we've seen the same production.

Andrew Cooper ([log in to unmask]) (hoping it'll stop raining in
Barbados soon)

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