09. November 2008 · Comments Off on Stepping Down Before Stepping Up · Categories: Links, Opera, Ramble, Videos, Watch

I hadn’t blogged about Mortier stepping down from New York City Opera up until now. I figured it was news everyone already knew, and not something I’m all that familiar with in any case. The only connection I have to the organization was from eons ago; Beverly Sills brought singers here, along with a conductor from the group (*more on that in a minute), and San Jose Symphony (RIP) was hired as the orchestra. I remember playing at Flint. I remember the conductor, and I remember we did the Overture to William Tell. That’s about all I remember. And yes, Beverly Sills was there. I remember that too. Of course.

But … rambling on … Mortier has resigned before really owning the position. So I just sort of thought, “meh” and went on. At the same time I wondered if the economic situation was the reason. this does suggest money was an issue.


And there are also the commissions:

The opera house is in discussions with Mortier about two new commissions: Philip Glass’s opera based on the life of Walt Disney and Charles Wuorinen’s setting of E. Annie Proulx’s “Brokeback Mountain.” It’s uncertain whether both properties will stay with City Opera. The fate of Messiaen’s “St. Francis of Assisi,” an invariably costly endeavor, also hasn’t been resolved.

I was interested in Glass’s opera. My daughter and I once got stuck in “It’s a Small World”. It was one of the few rides she would go on, as it wasn’t scary (she found a lot of rides to be scary when she was very young). So there we were, stuck in a boat in the middle of the ride. The singing went on and on. In some ways it was kind of like Glass, but not quite, since it was the same over and over rather than altering bit by bit. Finally they turned the music off, but the dolls mouths continued to move, so you could hear this clacking sound. It was nearly like a horror movie, really. But maybe Glass will use the tune. I think there’s potential …. 😉

But back to Mortier — he’s gone. And there you go. Before he was really there.

And no my little aside about the NYCO concert we played. When we had our rehearsal we ran William Tell once. The maestro (whoever he was I thought he was fabulous; I wish I’d kept a program!) looked up, said to the flutist and yours truly, “Your solos are great and we won’t need to do them again.” Or something like that. That frequently makes me quite happy. The more I play something the more worried I become. So once at rehearsal and once in performance and I’m often a happy camper. (And of course that’s a work we’ve played and played, so it’s not like I don’t know the thing.)

I wonder if NYCO will remove the following video:

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