Come Together

Even at Concert Halls, It’s Location, Location, Location – NYT
While most of this article points out that it matters where you sit when you view a performance, this article also explores the fact that a concert experience is not necessarily communal even though a lot of people are all sitting in the same hall. This performance is an individual sharing of emotion between the performers and each individual audience member. How, then, do you create a communal performance (an oxymoron?) where the audience collectively engages?

Seven Characters Not in Search of a Director – NYT
A show without a director? The idea of the collaborative of actors coming together to teach each other is a little idealistic if you ask me. Then again, seven is a number small enough to pull it off, if it is indeed possible.

Pipe Down! We Can Hardly Hear You
One of the decisions that a director would be necessary for is whether to mike a show. Opera would say, “we don’t need no stinkin’ mikes” (SF Opera ad campaign many years ago…). How then can one justify miking the latest SF Opera production of Doctor Atomic? The answer: Style. It’s a modern opera and therefore, as its predecessors did, it should reflect the culture and times. Our culture and times tell us: we’re not ashamed of amplification.

The Classical Crossover Conundrum
In general, I am all for “crossover” music because it can provide a unique and unexplored texture to music. However, when it comes to classical crossover, I cannot stand it. Maybe I’m just a classical purist but the sound of crossover is weak in this case. It’s as if all the opera dropouts get plunked into this category where they can’t quite make it happen. Notice how very few individuals cross from another genre into classical, it’s always the other way around. It’s time for Harvard student Samuel Brondfield to prove to me why I should like this crossover genre.