THE VOICE | The Toronto Consort Take Light in the Darkness (Review)
The ever resourceful The Toronto Consort outdo themselves with an engaging production of the liturgical drama, The Play of Daniel. Neil Crory reviews.
THE VOICE | Canadian Opera Company Brings Creative Freshness to Barber of Seville (review)
By Neil Crory on April 18, 2015
Canadian Opera Company remounts Rossini's masterpiece, The Barber of Seville: review
THE VOICE | Brush up your Verdi…
By Neil Crory on October 6, 2014
For the production, a co-pro with Covent Garden, La Scala, the Met and the Dutch National Opera, Carsen has moved the action from 16th century England and the reign of Elizabeth I to the 1950s and the reign of Elizabeth II. And it’s a comfortable fit. This is no feeble-minded ”concept” production. It is well argued and thought through, drawing comparisons between, as Carsen writes, “the sunset of the aristocracy and the rise of the middle class” in both periods.
THE VOICE | Angela Hewitt and Anne Sofie von Otter: 'Medium' is the Message
By Neil Crory on January 11, 2015
The generous programme for this sold out event consisted of songs and solo piano pieces by German masters on the first half (Beethoven, Schubert and Brahms) and French maîtres (Hahn, Fauré, Chabrier, Debussy and Chaminade) on the second half. And while the ingredients for success were all there, the evening proved to be a mixed, occasionally wanting, affair.
THE VOICE | The Proof in the Pudding is Puccini
By Neil Crory on October 14, 2014
If one wants proof that music has the power to seduce, one need only turn to the works of Giacomo Puccini to be totally moonstruck. His music has uncanny powers of persuasion, even manipulation. With melodies that linger long in one’s memory, harmonies that challenge convention, and orchestration that envelops one in its sensuality; one is powerless to resist. When combined, these qualities weave a spider’s web of emotional entrapment. Do I feel that my senses are being manipulated? Yes. Do I mind? Not in the least. Tears still moisten these cynical eyes each time Tosca leaps off the parapet of Castel Sant’Angelo; or Liù plunges a dagger into her heaving breast.
THE VOICE | Against the Grain Theatre Goes Green and Wins Gold (Review)
This past Friday, Against the Grain Theatre (AtG) gave the final of four sold-out performances of their latest venture, Death & Desire, featuring mezzo-soprano, Krisztina Szabó, bass-baritone, Stephen Hegedus, and pianist, Topher Mokrzewski.
THE VOICE | Voice Box/Opera In Concert Season Concludes
It seems hardly possible that Opera In Concert (now rebranded as Voice Box/Opera in Concert) marks its 41st anniversary this past season. The organization - founded by the irrepressible vocal coach and pianist, Stuart Hamilton, C.M., – made its debut on October 21, 1974 with Ambroise Thomas' Hamlet. Since then they have presented over 150 different operas - most of them true rarities...
THE VOICE | Wagner's Ring of Fire Relit
By Neil Crory on February 2, 2015
On Saturday, January 31, the Canadian Opera Company officially launched the revival of its lauded 2006 production of Richard Wagner's epic Ring Cycle with seven performances of Die Walküre at the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts. The production runs through February 22nd...
FEATURE | Maria Callas In Toronto – A Night On The Town
By Neil Crory on October 15, 2014
"Maria Callas Is Coming!" trumpeted one newspaper headline a few days before the Greek-American soprano was to make her highly anticipated Toronto debut on October 21, 1958. Vocally, the diva was at the peak of her game and the height of her celebrity, so it is perhaps not surprising that an estimated 5,000 to 6,000 opera fans gathered to hear her perform in the cavernous Maple Leaf Gardens - home not only to the Maple Leafs, but also to New York's Metropolitan Opera on tour. So dense were the crowds of fans, the Toronto Daily Star reported, that when she appeared, police had to drive a path through the cheering throngs...