I’m a Top Chef fan. Yeah. Really. (Sorry to disappoint some of you who think I only listen to Mozart, practice my instruments, and work on reeds all day and night.) When a chef is given the news that he or she is out of the competition the line is, “[Name of competitor], please pack your knives and go.”

It hit me tonight … a conductor just might say that to me at a rehearsal some day. Hmmm. I do hope that never happens. But really, can’t you just hear it?

“Patty Mitchell, please pack your knives and go.”

At least I’m now somewhat prepared for the line. And it does have a certain ring to it for some reason.

11. February 2009 · Comments Off on $50 Cosi Tickets, February 12 · Categories: Announcements, Opera

Until 4:00 PM tomorrow you can purchase tickets to tomorrow night’s Così performance for $50. Check it out!

11. February 2009 · 1 comment · Categories: News

… but perhaps this is good news?

Muzak has filed for bankruptcy. Sadly, it appears they’ll be back.

I have always thought Muzak was musically bankrupt anyway.

Scott MacClelland certainly gave Opera San José’s Così fan tutte a favorable review!

11. February 2009 · Comments Off on Yay for Brandon! · Categories: Links

Brandon has a track out on emusic. The funny thing is that I was checking to see what was new there under “classical” and the album he is on (an emusic exclusive) was put under classical as well as other things. In any case, he is track #8 “Cosmos” (altairnouveau). And I’m pretty jazzed to see him there. 🙂 Anyone who would download it has to download the entire album (I’ve not seen that before, but oh well.) Still … he’s my son. So if you like this kind of music go for it. (You can hear more at his site, Altair Nouveau.)

And no, there is no oboe. 😉

11. February 2009 · Comments Off on Asking For A Handout · Categories: Havin' Fun, Links

A horn player blogs about a student who wrote and asked the blogger if she could offer up a free horn. The points the blogger makes are quite valid, and I, like her (assuming the horn player is female since the blog is “juliashornpage”) would be quite taken aback if someone wrote to me and asked for an oboe. (She does wonder if it’s a scam … it does have that tone to my ear.)

Mostly, though, I laughed. And I thought about what the student will do when attempting to get work in this business? Maybe the player will write to orchestras and just ask for a position.

Hey … I think that’s the ticket!

Dear [insert orchestra name here],

I’m an aspiring horn player and I have no money to fly out to audition for a position so I’m wondering if you could please give me one instead.

That might work … right? 😉

11. February 2009 · Comments Off on Not The Opera I Would Have Chosen · Categories: Links, Opera

Let’s see, a man marries a woman in Japan but then goes back to America and marries another woman. His first wife, now a mother, commits suicide, leaving her young child behind, when she realizes the man she loves and has waited for is back to take his child to America.

Sixty grade-schoolers at Columbia Independent School participated in an abridged version of the opera “Madame Butterfly” Tuesday.

I read it here.

So what opera would you choose for an elementary school? Am I silly to think this really isn’t the best of choices?

11. February 2009 · Comments Off on One Solution? · Categories: Links, Opera, Read!

So is there anything that these small companies can do other than throw in the towel, close the doors and blame everyone and their cousin for the failure? Of course. These companies, it seems to me, have one chance for survival and one chance only: Announce that for the 2009/2010 and 2010/2011 seasons at the very least they will perform “concert opera” only. No sets, no production. The money will be spent on the singers and on the orchestra. And the repertoire will not mirror that of places like The Met or La Scala. We might actually get to hear operas that have not been performed in decades or, gasp, perhaps newly written works that no regional company could afford to stage but which could be done in concert version. The marketing of such efforts requires honesty: We think this is a reasonable stop gap measure. We do not intend to do this forever unless you really like it. It is a compromise that will allow us to give you real music, and we understand that it is not the full operatic experience that you might wish. The good news is that you will hear music you likely would never hear live if it had to be fully (badly) staged.

I read it here. I’m still contemplating this.

I’m all for whatever it takes to keep opera companies in business.

(What do I want? Hmmm. Summer series of light opera. Or a summer Sondheim festival. Yeah, I need summer work! But those would cost too much. So what I want isn’t going to happen. I just hope what I don’t want — more collapsing arts organizations — doesn’t happen.)

11. February 2009 · Comments Off on An Opera Plot for You · Categories: Links, News, Opera

You know how those operas always have big parties in the town square with happy people singing and swinging fake beer mugs around while they stroll all over and the baritone mayor is unhappy because his soprano daughter won’t agree to an arranged marriage to the penurious prince because she loves a handsome though poor donkey farmer in another town and, in anger, the father naturally stabs a bunch of grapevines with his sword, not knowing his daughter is hiding in there for some reason, causing her to stumble out and take a long song to die, turning the father inconsolable just as the poor donkey farmer arrives to vow eternal revenge but the mayor’s plus-size wife announces she’ll drink poison if the men don’t make up, so they do?

So it’s all a good thing and the party in the square continues for everyone except the dead girl, who returns as an angel in Act III.

The article is actually about politics … Coburn, his opera singing daughter, President Obama … you know how it goes. But don’t you love that story above? I laughed.