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Home > Author Archives: Joel Rozen

Author Archives: Joel Rozen

BASTA: Altro sangue scorrerà!

BASTA: Altro sangue scorrerà!

BASTA: Altro sangue scorrerà! Lights softened, and the swan-shaped chandeliers ascended quickly, from parterre-level to the heavens, as though trading in the proletariat for a more exalted perch. But what a proletariat!  For tonight’s distinguished premiere of Lucia di Lammermoor at the Algonquin Opera, there would in fact be far more blue hairs in the audience than blue collars; there would be diamonds, organza, cloche hats, Rykiel fedoras, antique ivory fibulas, Yamamoto watches; there would be ... Read More »

Songs of disappointment

Songs of disappointment

Songs of disappointment He’s the kind of gallant, broad-smiling vocalist you can easily see complimenting your mom and meaning it. Lawrence Brownlee, star tenor of stage and NFL games, wholehearted salsa enthusiast, bringer of Autism Awareness, is a real “pillar of the community.”  He&8217;s the kind of gallant, broad-smiling vocalist you can easily see complimenting your mom and meaning it, gumming down her potato-leek stew, blithely answering your brother’s questions about that “weird oowa-oowa-oowa” thing ... Read More »

It takes a woman

It takes a woman A labor of reclamation. An #art song recital that gives womanhood thematic pride of place is hardly a new invention these days. But rising star soprano Julia Bullock, who graced Weill Recital Hall Friday night with a spectacular solo show alongside pianist John Arida that limned works by Schubert, Barber, Fauré, and various jazz composers, didn’t pay tribute to women so much as she exhumed them.  Her concert, as she herself made ... Read More »

BASTA: Yet more buzz

BASTA: Yet more buzz

BASTA: Yet more buzz That must be Laetitia Casta clicking up the steps in vintage Schiaparelli. Entering Porky’s, the renowned rehearsal space on 880 Broadway where the Big Apple Singing Theater Association would be hosting much of its supernumerary practice for its upcoming production of Bison Don’t Cry, you’d think you were setting foot in a shopping mall, that’s how tension-inducing it was.  Even dauntless Evan Ingersoll felt his nerves beginning to mount. “We’re floor three, right?” he ... Read More »

Kingly sex

Kingly sex

Kingly sex As far as prewar Italian verismo goes, L’amore dei tre re is a supernova.  Premiering in April 1914, the chef-d’oeuvre of Veronese composer Italo Montemezzi dazzled Toscanini, who would bring it to New York and become its champion. The opera exploded in popularity there, even joining the staple repertoire for a few decades. Then, a decade after World War II, it suddenly lost traction, and poofed quietly into obscurity.  Read More »

BASTA: You must take the ‘C’ train

BASTA: You must take the ‘C’ train

BASTA: You must take the ‘C’ train “I’ll bet none of these no-hopers will ever appear onstage,” Evan thought. Reaching Porky’s, the gargantuan dance rehearsal galleria on 880 Broadway, meant catching the B train downtown from Columbus and switching at 34th to the Q, or riding the C down to Chelsea and then swapping for the L.  That is, of course, if your point of departure on Sunday morning was in Hell’s Kitchen, which, for ... Read More »

BASTA: Bang bang, he shot me down

BASTA: Bang bang, he shot me down

BASTA: Bang bang, he shot me down “Voi manderete tutto alla malora! Vergogna!” Lately it seemed all the best digs could be found in The Metro Times.  However, Friday afternoon, later than usual, Evan Ingersoll received an ecstatic, emoticon-filled text from his compadre, Jesús Halévy, encouraging him to pick up The Village Void. Evan clicked over to the his favorite music critic’s weekly column, “Slings and Arias.&8221;  Redelivered BASTA Shoots Up “La Fanciulla del West” ... Read More »

BASTA: O luce di quest’animus

BASTA: O luce di quest’animus

BASTA: O luce di quest’animus “I said he could take his big bag of Bagatini, and his Caterina Parr, and shove them right up—” The night was wearing on at Ottolenghi’s Basement, an understated, warmly lit eatery on Madison Ave. Patrons—most loaded up on the specials du jour, truffle-anchovy crème fraiche on artisanal flatbread, wakame-infused roti in a coriander-shallot chimichurri sauce, cognac digestif—were now either opening their wallets or gathering their pelisses from the foyer.  ... Read More »

Morning glory

Morning glory

Morning glory Immersive theater doesn’t do opera singers many favors. Like a photonegative of theatre in the round, it forces performers into an up-close-and-personal relationship with their audience and breaks down the fourth wall, lending most spectators an HD view of everyone’s tonsils. Singing technique, usually kept at a safe distance onstage, is here made loudly, oppressively available.  What’s more, for those present at an immersively incorporating production, I can safely report that there is ... Read More »

BASTA: Witness for the persecution

BASTA: Witness for the persecution

BASTA: Witness for the persecution The day the story broke, Evan Ingersoll was pumping iron in the basement gym of his friend Jesús Halévy’s Hell’s Kitchen apartment complex, Hyundai Hut. The two had recently attended a midnight screening of Deliverance and were now determined to look their best. “Jesus! Jesús! Jesus!” Evan screamed suddenly from the squat rack. “Get over here!”  Jesús hopped off a nearby treadmill. “What’s wrong?” “Have you seen the lawsuit yet?” ... Read More »

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