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It’s all about the clothes

Full disclosure would require that I admit I know almost nothing about costumes. It’s one of those areas where I pray that I hire the best designers for the job, for it would be disastrous were I to meddle with their work. Timm Burrow did a fabulous job on Sweeney, and now Beth Clancy (new

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Palate cleansing

That’s what they say about Mozart. And all of those seemingly extreme metaphors are right. A cleansing of the palate. A refreshing spring shower. As much as I love all various and wonderful kinds of music, when you’ve been away from Mozart for a while, you have to admit that the coming home is pretty

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Movin’ on to Mozart

Final Sweeney. Great audience for my pre-show talk and for the show itself. Arrival of the rest of the summer’s company, chomping at the bit to start rehearsals tomorrow for Giovanni and the Murder & Mayhem NSO concert. Lots of transportation excitement; everyone finally arrived safely and delivered to local housing assignments. Lovely cast party.

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A grown-up concert

Steve called it a “grown-up” concert. Tonight’s Latest Word recital. (See posts from earlier in the week for details). Complete with singers whose musical maturity exceeded our expectations and surprised even themselves, and an audience that was willing to dig deep and concentrate fully. The program presented some logistical challenges, performed as it was on

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The world of audience feedback

Bernstein and Gershwin with the NSO in the morning (gotta love those West Side Story dances!), and more Sondheim at night. The range of patron responses to our little crossover experiment at The Barns is falling into four categories. 1) Love Sweeney and enjoyed the show; 2) Love Sweeney and hate what we’ve done with

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Opera-free zone

No opera today. Large doses of symphonic pops (Marvin Hamlisch and the NSO – rehearsal in the morning and show in the evening) and a dress rehearsal / work-through of the Latest Word concert. Great stuff on the latter. I’m a sucker for poetry (even though I’m not exactly knowledgeable), and getting to revisit Coleridge,

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High risk, high reward

Lots of work being done this week to prepare for Saturday evening’s Latest Word concert. Steven Blier’s been here since Sunday, and four of our singers have been digging into 2 hours worth of the best of the song literature from the last couple of decades. Rorem, Bolcom, Corigliano, Guettel, Musto, Gordon, Moravec and more.

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Press

Reviews came out today. We don’t pay a whole lot of attention to them. And for sure, we try to counsel our young artists not to read them during the run of the production. Good or bad, they rarely have a beneficial effect on a young singer’s current performance or general development. The Post sent

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Cinderella in Concert

There will undoubtedly be more on this later, but finally, a brief explanation on my gloom-and-doom postings from the last few days. I’ll post a slightly more detailed and satisfying account in a short while, but for now, here’s the official notice: ROSSINI’S CINDERELLA IN CONCERTDue to unforeseen circumstances, the Thursday, August 18 performance of

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Matinee audiences

Second Sweeney performance. Matinee. Sunday afternoons are prone to what I call “buffet coma” – all those folks who chow down at the brunch buffet and then come to the theatre to sleep. The cast was understandably optimistic after Friday’s opening, so I tried to damp audience response expectations for this afternoon. I needn’t have

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