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BWW Feature: FREE ONLINE OPERA/RECITAL JUNE 19-26 at Home Computer Screens

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BWW Feature: FREE ONLINE OPERA/RECITAL JUNE 19-26 at Home Computer ScreensBWW Feature: FREE ONLINE OPERA/RECITAL JUNE 19-26 at Home Computer Screens

This week, Los Angeles Opera (LAO) launches a special audio streaming of the Figaro Trilogy, three operas that various librettists based on Caron de Beaumarchais' Figaro plays. LAO recorded each performance live in 2015, and all will be available at "From the Vault." Currently, on the website you can hear Rossini's The Barber of Seville. Music Director James Conlon conducts baritone Rodion Pogossov as Figaro, mezzo-soprano Elizabeth DeShong as Rosina, and tenor René Barbera as Count Almaviva. LAO will offer Mozart's The Marriage of Figaro and Corigliano's The Ghosts of Versailles during subsequent weeks at "From the Vault."

Tenor Robert Stahley and soprano Sydney Mancasola present "Living Room Recitals" this week. Perhaps readers would like to sip a sparkling beverage as Stahley, a member of LAO's Young Artist Program, joins pianist Jeremy Frank for an excerpt from Die Walküre. After that, he partners with pianist Brendon Shapiro, a fellow Young Artist, for Donald Swann's song cycle, The Road Goes Ever On, set to the poetry of J.R.R. Tolkien. Mancasola joins pianist Mario Antonio Marra for a program of arias from Massenet's Manon and Meyerbeer's Robert le Diable and songs by Reynaldo Hahn, Missy Mazzoli and Stephen Sondheim. In 2021, Mancasola will make her LA Opera debut as the star of Vavrek and Mazzoli's Breaking the Waves.

Latest News: On June 23, 2020 at 5 p.m., PDT, Soprano Ana María Martinez will sing a "Living Room Recital" with pianist Craig Terry focused on Spanish songs and the "Song to the Moon" from Dvořák's "Rusalka."


Karen Slack's KikiKonversations offers two Facebook/YouTube shows this week. On Tuesday June 23 at 3:00 P.M. Pacific time, Kiki's guest will be composer of art song, opera, and musical theatre Ricky Ian Gordon. On Thursday, June 24 at 4:00 P.M., she will be chatting with world-renowned pianist and vocal collaborator Mark Markham.

Since Sunday, June 21, is Father's Day, I looked for operas with striking father figures in order to find an appropriate work with which to celebrate. Wotan was a prolific father: Siegfried and Sieglinde, Rheinmaidens, Valkyries, etc. Veit Pogner gave his daughter, Eva, as a prize for the Meistersinger Contest. Don Bartolo, Figaro's dad, was a deadbeat. The Elder Germont intervened in his son's relationship in La Traviata. William Tell, shot an apple off his son's head. Rigoletto wins. He kept his daughter prisoner but he truly loved her. While readers are cooking for Fathers Day, I suggest listening to the gorgeous singing on the 1967 Rome Opera Rigoletto with Cornell MacNeil, Reri Grist, Nicolai Gedda, and Ruggero Raimondi conducted by Francesco Molinari-Pradelli. Eggs Benedict would be super.

Now it's time to board our Magic Opera Flying Carpet for the state of Washington. Mezzo-soprano Jamie Barton sings a recital for Seattle Opera that includes French and English art songs along with works by Harold Arlen, Leonard Bernstein and Irving Berlin. Readers can find it at:

As we leave Washington for Kansas, let's enjoy a baked apple with lots of brown sugar and just a bit of cream.When we arrive, we can sample Wichita Grand Opera's somewhat abbreviated version of Rossini's William Tell directed by Chuck Hudson and conducted by Hayden Todorov. Lucas Meacham is Tell and Zvetlina Vassileva, Matilda.

For those who prefer the full length opera, YouTube has a rendition of William Tell from La Scala in Milan conducted by Riccardo Muti, directed by Luca Ronconi, with Giorgio Zancanaro, Chris Merritt, and Cheryl Studer.

Our tour guide suggests a stop in the Big Apple where New York Dramatic Voices will offer A Very Wagnerian Virtual Concert on June 20 at 3:00P.M. Pacific time. We can find it on the group's Facebook page.

I suggest some hot, crispy fish and chips as our Magic Opera Flying Carpet soars over the ocean on our way to England. This week, the Royal Opera presents Mozart's The Magic Flute online in a classic production by David McVicar designed by John MacFarlane. Sabine Devieilhe sings the Queen of the Night; Mauro Peter, Tamino; Siobhan Stagg, Pamina; and Roderick Williams, Papageno. Julia Jones conducts the Royal Opera Orchestra and Chorus.

On June 21, at 9:00 A.M. Los Angeles time, MüPA of Hungary offers Wagner's Götterdämerung with Stefan Vinke as Siegfried and Irene Theorin as Brünnhilde. Adam Fisher conducts and Rebecca Stanzel directs. After the theater, we have a virtual reservation at a restaurant in Budapest's Jewish Quarter for traditional Sólet, an egg-topped stew of kidney beans, onions, barley and, of course, the city's famous spicy paprika. A glass of fröccs, wine with seltzer, will top it off perfectly.

On June 24, at 9 A.M. Los Angeles time, MüPA presents Wagners's Die Meistersinger directed by Michael Schultz and conducted by Adam Fischer. Singers include James Rutherford as Sachs, Klaus Florian Vogt as Walther, and Annette Dasch as Eva. These shows are also available on YouTube.

Enjoy this wealth of free online opera while it lasts. I suspect its purveyors are already deciding what to charge for their most popular shows in the near future.

Photos of Robert Stahley and Sydney Mancasola courtesy of LA Opera.

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From This Author Maria Nockin