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J M
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Cineworld is much cheaper. £30 is quite a burden if one wants to watch most of the season.
Toggle Commented Mar 15, 2014 on Get ready to book Met cinema tickets at Intermezzo
Harsh. It is logically untenable to condemn something just immediately after showing some appreciation for it.
Toggle Commented Mar 1, 2013 on Anna Netrebko, bikini babe at Intermezzo
This poor foreigner now knows what a todger is...
Toggle Commented Dec 2, 2011 on Castor and Pollux at ENO at Intermezzo
M. Butterfly is simply not credible if you begin to scratch the surface, and it never will because it asks for a miracle: that a mature woman who has the technical ability to sing the role is convincing as a naive 15 year old girl. It is our complete suspension of disbelief and the wonderful music what makes the operatic spectacle possible (Carmen for example is pretty much sorted on that sense in which we now have singers that look like credible Carmens). As for the cultural aspects of such a young girl getting married, there is a plethora of modern countries in which girls can marry at 16, around 20 or so where they can marry at 15 (in both cases normally the consent of the parents is necessary), and a few more where they can marry even younger as long as they have reached womanhood from a purely physological sense (don't heckle at me about this, I am just stating, nod condoning, facts). So in all honestly I never really thought about this opera as having a "paedo" angle, but alas, I come from a country where girls used to get married at 14 to men in their 20s, this was not unusual until very recently (and is not actually the theme of the opera, not even in a tangential way, I think the young age of Cio Cio San is simply used as an allegory for inocence and naivity).
Toggle Commented Jun 28, 2011 on Madama Butterfly flaps again at Intermezzo
But seriously, what is "Opera"? "Phantom of the Opera" for example, I heard it without amplification by singers using classical technique and although the music is formulaic, any genre is populated by good and bad examples, so the question is, once amplification goes away has a work become an Opera? Or does the composer has to have a track record of doing "serious" music? Who would decide if the music is serious or not then? Sorry, but the certainities that the first poster so succintly enounceates are not such. Scratch the surface and everything is nothing but subjective convention and ad hoc labeling. I really wonder if somebody like Wagner or Mozart would come back from the departed would be so dismissive about works like "Journey from the West" or musicals like "Lion King" or "Phantom of the Opera". They may laugh their socks off about the music, but I am not entirely sure they would dismiss the whole spectacle as a whole, and most importantly if they would not class it as Opera. I myself run a little operatic group and more often than not newcomers join with the hope to see musicals, IMHO those of you that think there is no gap to be breached are entirely missing the point of performances like this, which are aimed squarely at people like these. By bringing works that are approachable for a variety of reasons (the composer, the theme, the kind of music) to opera houses you are breaking a psychological barrier, people are intimidated by the ROH and the Colisseum, showing to new audiences that there is nothing to be affraid about the venue and the experience itself will give them some much needed familiarity with attending these venues, in order not to feel intimidated to go again, when they will have to deal with all the bankers and other posh hangers on parading their "class", which is intimidating on its own right for the low-middle income newcomer. Although I could not agree more with the sentiment that creating an audience for opera is a labour that should be tackled in the different ways described, the Opera companies can't do this on their own, and I commend them for doing what is on their grasp: bringing new works (populist works if you must rush for your adjectives) for new audiences. In all honestly I could not care less if the over 60s feel agravated about this, it is not like if the whole season has been given to Gorillaz retrospective...
Toggle Commented Jun 23, 2011 on It's an 'opera' at Intermezzo
A good photographer can make anybody look glamorous or a least more interesting with a bit of good lighting only if need be.
Toggle Commented Jun 7, 2011 on Marina Poplavskaya, unpainted at Intermezzo
La Poplavskaya is smiling!
Toggle Commented Jun 7, 2011 on we happy few at Intermezzo
If good men can't make a difference, then who can? I can't possibly see how PD's reputation could be damaged, unless he chooses to play ball (ahem) with the FIFA corrupt elite, but given his track record in activities away from the stage, it is most likely that he could help to draw a set of sensible reccomendations if he and his peers are allowed to act. The strange thing is not that he is asked to do something for the greater good, but why FIFA thought about him in the first place (his passion for football is a well known fact, but surely that is not enough to fix an organization as corrupt as FIFA, but Blatter shows, yet again, what a clever operator he is: drawing a commiteee of his mates that may not have any bite, not for lack of will, but for lack of know how)...
Toggle Commented Jun 7, 2011 on Placido Domingo, soccer star at Intermezzo
I don't know who this chap is and in all frankness I am not interested to know. For the love of god, if he doesn't like Opera why does he bother? I don't care if this individual has talent or not, he will not get my hard earned cash in any way, knowingly at least (it seems he already scooped our taxes. Great).
Toggle Commented Jun 6, 2011 on Guess who's "bored stiff" by opera? at Intermezzo
Gosh. What a humourless crowd. What is wrong with having a bit of fun? Denigrate himself? Why exactly? I think a lot of opera lovers need to come down from their high horse of Trojan proportions. Relax for bunnies sakes.
Toggle Commented May 27, 2011 on Rolando Villazon does Freddie Mercury at Intermezzo
ROH could nip this in the bud in no time whatsoever. Put two or more small HD cameras that catch the whole stage in a good central, elevated angle, and sell the videos for a nominal price shortly after the performance (£5 or £10), giving rights to people to edit them to their hearts content and distribute the derivative works in a non profit basis, or taking a cut from publishers that wished to try to make a profit. It could go as far as to sell USB sticks with the opera one hast just seen ready for collection after the performance finishes (may not be practical since copying the video may be too slow but they could mail them later instead). Or what about having one reharsal session or even a performance where taking pictures and videos is actually allowed? (no flash of course). ROH is in the subsidized business of staging operas, they should worry less about pictures and videos and more about providing a far reaching cultural service, in the understanding that fighting recorded media by the public is just plain stupid (everybody and his dog can record audio now if they so wished, HD video, with minuscule video cameras, is just around the corner). ******************************************** Intermezzo replies - having blown £5m on the vanity purchase of dinosaur-tech Opus Arte (an 'investment' it has not and likely will not recoup) the ROH is super-sensitive about anything which might hit DVD sales. But you are of course right - they need to move forward and think realistically about how to get their work out to all audiences.
It is a shame they don't come more often to London and that they don't advertise much what they are doing. I think I am in their mailing list and got no advanced notice of their dates in town. Until next year then :-(
@Rannladini "This is not a snob comment, but it is noticeable that people from humbler backgrounds (and I am all for opera for everyone believe me!) do seem to become grand when they achieve success" Of course your comment is outright snob, otherwise you would not have do defend it as soon as it was uttered. Names and context please, let the facts speak for themselves. And how much humble would it be humble for your theory to fit? Placido Domingo was by no means wealthy when he grew up in Mexico and I think nobody can accuse him of having lost a se nse of proportion.
Toggle Commented Mar 10, 2011 on Gheorghiu's Battle at Intermezzo
Public ballots. What would be wrong with that? They do it for many other events, either if you have some kind of membership or not. I find utterly infurating having to go through all this rigmarole in order to *try* to buy very expensive Opera tickets.
Mmmh. This would be innovative if they really left it to the opera goer to mark his price. As it is it looks like a gimmick using social pressure to get £30 out of some unsuspecting souls.
@po "they should allow people to wear swimming suit outside, at least we can get some nice tan" Nobody was stopping you :-) I was in the upper circle in the first raw, in exactly the last seat on the right of the stage, so the position to see Placido's dive was ideal: 10.0 no question about it.
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Jul 23, 2010