11. September 2010 · Comments Off on Better Pictures, Others’ Thoughts … · Categories: Opera, Photos, Reviews

… on Aida:

MUCH better pictures than mine:
Civic Center

SF Gate Pictures of all the people I DIDN’T see! (where they heck were they?)

More photos of the rich and famous

The Opera Tattler

Janos Gereben on Opera-L

SFCV (Jason Victor Serinus)

Mercury News (Richard Scheinin)

Well, they were an opening night audience, after all. What did I expect? I thought they were far too noisy and disruptive. The maestro waited before starting the opera, and I’m guessing he was waiting for people to get quiet. They never did. I guess as long as no one is singing they think talking is an okay thing to do. So I found them noisy. Frustrating. Mostly there, I’m sure, to see and be seen. Maybe, too, to be heard? Surely not to listen. Grumble grumble.

One man sitting far too close to us laughed nearly hysterically about the puppet type elephant. It was whimsical, but was it something to guffaw over? No. Not that loudly and for that long. The group behind us seemed to be a crowd of noise makers at times. I’m guessing they rarely go to opera, actually. But maybe I’m just being snobby. I can get that way, I know. I just get frustrated with audiences when they are noisy.

Oh well. It was opening night. It’s a spectacle, to be sure.

And now it’s nap time.

11. September 2010 · Comments Off on Aida · Categories: Ramble

So … you might wonder how was the opera?! And here’s what I have to say (please note I don’t really do reviews):

I love love love the new oboist, Mingjia Liu. What a fabulous sound, and he was incredibly musical. So hoorah for the new oboe. I thought the entire orchestra sounded great. (But I must confess I really adore the SF Opera orchestra!)

For me the star of the singers was Amneris. I thought Amonasro, Ramfis and the King of Eygypt sounded great. To my ear both Aida and Radames sounded a bit weary or weak or both. But maybe that’s just me. It sounded as if Radames struggled to reach notes, and at the end I thought he might even be losing his voice, or perhaps was scared of cracking a high note. Do keep in mind, though, that I’m not a vocalist and know very little about voice.

Visually the opera was, not surprisingly, very colorful and quite fanciful. The sets looked sort of like “Dr. Seuss goes Egyptian” (I can even hear in my head as I type, “basement dungeon … everybody out …” from The 5,000 Fingers of Dr. T. hah!).

Prior to the opera Dan and I were talking about the “will there be an elephant on stage?” thing and I said, “I’m guessing some sort of puppet, like Lion King (Julia Taymor) type thing.” I think I should get a prize for guessing correctly! (If you want to see pictures of the opera go to this page and click on the photo gallery. The blue elephant is there somewhere!

11. September 2010 · Comments Off on Opening Nights! · Categories: Opera, Photos

Last night was San Francisco Opera‘s opening night. Tonight is Opera San José‘s opening night. Last night I was not nervous. So far I’m not nervous about tonight either, but I’m guessing that will change. Last night I dressed up. Tonight I’ll dress in black. Last night I didn’t worry even ONCE about reeds! Tonight? Who knows!?

Below are some somewhat blurry pictures from last night’s event. Enjoy! (click on each to enlarge).

The roses were incredible!

Dan looking spiffy!

Just a selection of dressed up folks here …

And the designer of the opera, Zander Rhodes, who happened to arrive right when we were walking past!

We saw these same two guys last year:

11. September 2010 · Comments Off on FBQD · Categories: FBQD

done camping, I guess it is time to think about getting John’s stuff ready to go back to school. Gotta find that oboe that has been in hiding all summer.

11. September 2010 · Comments Off on TQOD · Categories: TQOD

Oboe lesson later. I haven’t practised. Oh well.