Performing Arts articles

Susanna and the Count.

The Met in HD: An invigorating, updated ‘Marriage of Figaro’

The Met in HD: An invigorating, updated ‘Marriage of Figaro’

WASHINGTON, October 21, 2014 – Based on a then-controversial 18th century drama by French author, businessman and adventurer Pierre Beaumarchais, Mozart’s “Le Nozze di Figaro” (“The Marriage of Figaro”) is an operatic comedy of errors, a story involving both real and imagined infidelity that ultimately leads to mutual forgiveness and a happy, if somewhat chastened ending.

Sweeney Todd and Mrs. Lovett.

Virginia Opera’s gloomy, surprisingly moving ‘Sweeney Todd’

FAIRFAX, Va., October 15, 2014 – The Virginia Opera wrapped up its final two performances of Stephen Sondheim’s “Sweeney Todd” this past weekend during its brief trip to George Mason University’s Center for the Arts in Fairfax City. Saturday’s performance, which we attended, was as crisp, precise, and haunting presentation of this work as you’re

Constellation Pirandello cast pix.

Is ‘Absolutely! {Perhaps}’ a weird play? Absolutely. (Perhaps)

WASHINGTON, October 14, 2014 – Constellation Theatre Company opened its 2014-2015 regular season this weekend past with a new production of Luigi Pirandello’s 1917 drama “Cosi e (se vi pare).” Roughly translated from the Italian as “Right you are (if you think so),” the play is based on an earlier novel by the author. Now

Scene from Macbeth (Verdi)

Review: The Met’s memorable ‘Macbeth’ at the movies, live in HD

WASHINGTON, October 13, 2014 – The Metropolitan Opera opened its 2014-2015 live broadcast season with a memorable production of Giuseppe Verdi’s “Macbeth.” Broadcast live to movie theaters across the country from the Lincoln Center this past Saturday, the performance was recorded and will be repeated at most of these same theaters on Wednesday evening, October

"Florencia in the Amazon."

WNO’s sensational “Florencia in the Amazon” at the KenCen

WASHINGTON, September 22, 2014 – “Sometimes a new opera is a trial. This one is not.” That’s an actual audience comment this reviewer overheard during the intermission of “Florencia in the Amazon” (“Florencia en el Amazonas”), the nearly-new work the Washington National Opera chose to open its 2014-2015 season at the Kennedy Center’s Opera House

Sunny and Mark

Shakespeare Theatre’s ‘Venus and Adonis’: Audience afterwards

WASHINGTON, September 18, 2014 – This reviewer’s positive impressions of Isango’s “Venus and Adonis,” currently being performed at the Shakespeare Theatre Company’s Lansburgh Theater, were confirmed by the surprisingly diverse Saturday night audience. Among others, the patrons included a gorgeous young couple named Sunny and Mark (pictured above). When asked who chose the show, Mark

Mhlekazi “WHA WHA” Mosiea.

‘Venus & Adonis’: A South African twist on the Bard’s original

WASHINGTON, September 17, 2014 – Imagine, if you will, a big, beautiful Queen Mother being stung by the youthful good looks of a lowly commoner. But shift the scene from the River Thames to the banks of Cape Town, South Africa. “Venus & Adonis” is a major poem that Shakespeare penned and published in 1593,

Cover art for "Fatal Song" program.

In Series’ ‘Fatal Song’ notable for its talented cast

WASHINGTON, September 12, 2014 – The In Series’ online description of its latest production, Kathleen Cahill’s good natured tragic opera pastiche, “Fatal Song: ” is excerpted from a Salt Lake Tribune review of the piece last autumn when it was performed by the temporarily renovation-exiled Utah Opera: “A bunch of opera heroines start to notice

EastWest's Hollywood Brass Gold edition packaging.

Review: EastWest Hollywood Brass

CHICAGO, September 13, 2014 – A long awaited update to the venerated Symphonic Orchestra, EastWest’s “Hollywood Brass,” may be the best sounding brass samples on the market, with enough solo, chamber configurations, and full sections to please most musical ears. Yet despite offering incredible sounds and loads of options, these mighty samples may not satisfy