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Metropolitan Opera soprano Amanda Woodbury and pianist Aurelia Andrews, both of whom are graduates of the Los Angeles Opera Young Artist Program, will give a Living Room Recital on the LAO website Friday, May 29, at 4:00 PM Pacific Time. It will also be available later for those readers who cannot watch it live. Their program includes:

Gounod's Waltz Song from Romeo and Juliette;

Poulenc's Les chemins de l'amour (The Roads of Love);

Richard Strauss' Breit über mein Haupt dein Schwarzes Haar (Your Black Hair Spread over my Head);

Mozart's Als Luise die Briefe ihres ungetreuen Liebhabers verbrannte (While Luisa Burned the Letters from her Unfaithful Lover);

Stolz's Mein Liebeslied muss ein Walzer sein (My Love Song must be a Waltz) from Im weißen Rössl;

Gimènez's Me llaman la primorosa (They Call Me the Primrose) from El Barbero de Sevilla, (same story, different composer and language);

finishing with Bock/Harnick's Vanilla Ice Cream from She Loves Me; and Whiting/Egan's Till We Meet Again. Amanda was Micaëla in LAO's 2013 and 2017 productions of Carmen, the latter of which is online at

Opera Philadelphia has announced the digital premiere of the award-winning work, Breaking the Waves, which will be held at 8:00 P.M. Eastern Time, (5:00 P.M. Pacific Time) on May 29, 2020, as part of Opera Philadelphia's Digital Festival O. The work, which made its world premiere in 2016, adapts Lars von Trier's 1996 film of the same name to the opera stage. Missy Mazzoli composed the work to a libretto by Royce Vavrek. It will be performed in English with English subtitles.

Most people associate Philly cheese steak with the Pennsylvania city, but for a change, I suggest a sizable portion of cherry or blueberry cheesecake which readers can continue eating on the post-opera trip to New York.

The Metropolitan Opera in New York offers a wide range of nightly delights to fit a variety of tastes.

Friday, May 29, Bellini's La Sonnambula stars Natalie Dessay and Juan Diego Flórez, conducted by Evelino Pidò.

Saturday, May 30, Donizetti's L'Elisir d'Amore stars Pretty Yende, Matthew Polenzani, and Ildebrando D'Arcangelo, conducted by Domingo Hindoyan.

Sunday, May 31, Strauss's Salome stars Karita Mattila, conducted by Patrick Summers.

Monday, June 1, Bellini's I Puritani stars Anna Netrebko, and Eric Cutler conducted by Patrick Summers.

Tuesday, June 2, Berg's Lulu stars Marlis Petersen, Susan Graham, and Paul Groves, conducted by Lothar Koenigs.

Wednesday, June 3, Gluck's Orfeo and Euridice stars Danielle De Niese, and Stephanie Blythe, conducted by James Levine.

Thursday, June 4, Puccini's Tosca stars Shirley Verrett, Luciano Pavarotti, and Cornell MacNeil, conducted by James Conlon.

Friday, June 5, Thomas Adès's The Exterminating Angel stars Amanda Echalaz, Alice Coote, Iestyn Davies, and Rod Gilfry, conducted by Thomas Adès.

Grab a beer while our Magic Opera Carpet flies us, virtually, above the searching hands of the TSA to Berlin's Komische Oper for Artistic Director Barrie Kosky's production of Oscar Strauss' operetta The Pearls of Cleopatra. Oscar Strauss is unrelated to the waltz king. Pearls is a forgotten show from the 1920s that Kosky brought to life in the 21st century. His production is a doozy. Almost 90 years after its initial run, The show is full of dancing flappers, catchy tunes, a bit of jazz, and plenty of hilarity. Since the composer was Jewish, the piece had been banned during the Third Reich and it faded into obscurity. Titles forThe Pearls of Cleopatra are in English.

During our trip to the Netherlands for their rendition of a Russian opera, let's enjoy some smooth Dutch cheese and crusty dark bread. Russian dark lager or even porter might go well with it. Dutch National Opera is offering their digital rendition of Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov's The Invisible City of Kitezh and the Maiden Fevronia. A delight for nature lovers, the overture is called A Hymn to Wilderness. As the story advances the city becomes invisible to invaders but its reflection in water can still be seen. Directed by Dmitri Tcherniakov and conducted by Marc Albrecht, the cast includes: Vladimir Vaneev as Prince Yuri and Svetlana Ignatovich as Fevronia. Titles for The Invisible City of Kitezh are in English.

After a quiet, restful trip back to Los Angeles, we can enjoy Leonard Bernstein's Trouble in Tahiti, an amusing 20th century opera with a few poignant moments. In 2011, Josh Shaw designed and directed the show while Stephen Karr played the piano accompaniment. The cast consisted of: Phil Meyer as Sam and Jessica Mamey as Dinah. Robert Norman and Ryan Riethmeier were the Boys.

Here's hoping all our readers stay safe until next week when we can again take a virtual trip abroad to enjoy the sounds and sights of digital opera.

Photo of Amanda Woodbury by Fay Fox

From This Author - Maria Nockin

Maria Nockin worked at the Metropolitan Opera in New York while attending  Fordham University across the street from Lincoln Center. At the same time, she studied voice, piano, and violin... (read more about this author)

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