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Watch a Free, Live Webcast of the New 'Brokeback Mountain' Opera

Brokeback

This week we reported that a new opera based on the classic Annie Proulx short story and film Brokeback Mountain opened in Madrid. Now, you'll be able to see it:

Medici.TV 3_brokebackwill present a free, live webcast of the world premiere production of Charles Wuorinen’s new opera, "Brokeback Mountain," from Madrid’s Teatro Real on Friday, February 7 at 2pm (EST).

The American composer, whose honors include both a Pulitzer Prize and a MacArthur Foundation “genius” grant, based his opera on the short story of the same name by his fellow Pulitzer Prize-winner Annie Proulx, who wrote the libretto herself. Starring Canadian bass-baritone Daniel Okulitch and American tenor Tom Randle as closeted ranch hands Ennis del Mar and Jack Twist, Madrid’s world premiere production is directed by Ivo van Hove, general director of the Toneelgroep in Amsterdam, under the leadership of conductor Titus Engel.

The live webcast will be available for free streaming on demand for 90 days, beginning on February 7. You can also watch medici.tv concerts on the iPhone with the free medici.tv App.

Watch some video clips of the opera, AFTER THE JUMP...

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‘Brokeback Mountain’ Opera to Open This Week in Madrid

Brokeback mountain

A modern opera adaption of Brokeback Mountain is set to open in Madrid later this week, AFP reports:

The Canadian bass-baritone Daniel Okulitch [right] as the hesitant Ennis and American tenor Tom Randle [left] as his devoted Jack play out their tale of secret love in homophobic 1960s Wyoming against a photographic backdrop of brooding mountains

At a dress rehearsal ahead of Tuesday night's world premiere, their voices soared over New York composer Charles Wuorinen's score, the orchestra sounding ominous and frenetic by turns as the doomed romance moved to its climax.

"The whole opera is about a typical kind of impossible situation, a tragic situation," said Wuorinen, who called on the writer Annie Proulx, author of the novella on which the film was based, to write the libretto.

"In this case, it's two people who in some way want to have a relationship which in their time is forbidden by society," Wuorinen told AFP.

"That's a very traditional operatic problem to deal with."

The English-language production will be premiering at Madrid’s Teatro Real.


Opera Diva Renee Fleming Set To Belt The National Anthem At This Year's Super Bowl

Reneefleming

She's made a name for herself as one of the foremost American opera divas, and she's even sung the Top 10 on David Letterman. Now, Renee Fleming is taking (perhaps) her biggest stage yet. The clear-voiced soprano is set to sing "The Star-Spangled Banner" at this year's Super Bowl XLVIII, the first time an opera singer will take on the task, and her rendition is sure to impress.

CBS Sports reports:

This won't be the first time Fleming's performed at a big event. The 54-year-old opera singer also performed at President Obama's first Inaugural celebration in 2009 and at Queen Elizabeth's Diamond Jubilee in June 2012.

Fleming joins a diverse group of people that have handled the national anthem at the Super Bowl, including: Alicia Keys, Kelly Clarkson, Billy Joel, Mariah Carey and the Backstreet Boys.

Here's hoping that sports fans across the country will embrace her on February 2nd.


9-Year-Old Opera Diva Blows Roof Off Holland's Got Talent: VIDEO

Willighagen

This young diva's performance went viral this week, but if you haven't seen Amira Willighagen blow the roof off Holland's Got Talent with Puccini's "O Mio Babbino Caro", it's a clip fit for starting your day.

She's 9 years old.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Opera Star Renee Fleming Sings Letterman's 'Top Ten': VIDEO

Fleming

Opera diva Renee Fleming sang the 'Top 10 Opera Lyrics' last night on The Late Show and it was amazing!

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

(via jmg)

Continue reading "Opera Star Renee Fleming Sings Letterman's 'Top Ten': VIDEO" »


Queer Nation Disrupts Opening Night Gala at the Metropolitan Opera in Protest Against Anti-Gay Russia

Queernation
(image roy klabin twitter)

Activists from Queer Nation NY protested outside the New York Metropolitan Opera's opening night gala performance of Tchaikovsky's Eugene Onegin tonight and delayed the beginning of the performance with a disruption.

OneginQueer Nation reports, via press release:

The Queer Nation NY members unfurled a rainbow flag chanted "Putin, Stop, End Your War on Russian Gays!" and "Anna, Your Silence is Killing Russian Gays! Valery, Your Silence is Killing Russian Gays!" just before the opera began, delaying the start of the performance. Russian conductor Valery Gergiev and soprano Anna Netrebko, who appeared in the Gala production of Eugene Onegin, which was written by the gay composer Peter Tchaikovsky, are longtime and vocal supporters of Vladimir Putin, Russia's president.

The disruption was met by a flurry of boos and a hearty round of applause. The protestors were led peacefully out of the opera house. There were no arrests. Earlier in the evening, Queer Nation NY protested outside of the opera house. Carrying rainbow flags and placards, the group attracted attention from the arriving audience as well as the media there to cover the Gala.

The NYT reports:

The outburst in the opera house capped an evening of picketing outside it, as opera patrons in black tie and ball gowns were met with chanting protesters and a 50-foot rainbow banner that said “Support Russian Gays!”

The seeds for the protests on Monday night were planted when Andrew Rudin, a composer who is gay, started an online petition urging the Met to dedicate the performance to gay rights in Russia. The petition, which has been signed by more than 9,000 people, noted that Tchaikovsky, a gay Russian composer, was being performed by artists who supported a Russian government that had passed antigay laws.

“Here’s a chance for the Met, in an entirely benign and positive way, to use its great cultural influence to be relevant, and to do something positive,” Mr. Rudin said in an interview on Monday.

Peter Gelb, the general manager of the Met, wrote an article for Bloomberg news over the weekend explaining why The Met refused to make a statement:

Throughout its distinguished 129-year history, the Met has never dedicated a single performance to a political or social cause, no matter how important or just. Our messaging has always been through art.

However, we’re engaged when it comes to social advocacy inside the Met. Through the choice of our LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) rainbow of artists and staff, the Met has long been at the forefront of championing sexual and social equality within our company.

We leave it to our artists to integrate their own ideas about society and politics into the work they create for our stage.
We respect the right of activists to picket our opening night and we realize that we’ve provided them with a platform to further raise awareness about serious human rights issues abroad.

Read his full statement here.


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