Showing posts from July, 2008

Comic. Opera.

I'll confess. I love comics. Not only do they remind me of a time when I was younger and life was simpler but there is something about the marriage of words and pictures that just does it for me. Much like the marriage of words and music you find in opera; sitting down with a good comic can take me on an incredible unforgettable journey. With Comic Con International in town this last week and the debut of Repo! The Genetic Opera (a rock opera starring Paris Hilton and Giles from Buffy The Vampire Slayer-- OK, color me intrigued) "San Diego + Opera" has been showing up in my in-box via Google News and Blog Alerts quite often as of late. So this morning I was suprised to find this article about Sal Velluto , a DC Comics Artist, who apparently did an ad campaign for us here at San Diego Opera. When you think about it, comics and opera are not too different from one another. Both can be set in fantastical locales, both can be filled with archetypical yet memorable characters.

What Are You Listening to this Weekend?

Yesterday's post got me thinking -- I really need to find the time to make listening to music an experience in itself. Since the weekend is coming up I thought I would block out a few hours to do this and I'm hoping to make this a weekly habit. So, I'm going to begin with Britten's Peter Grimes because it is the one opera next season that I really need to learn. There's some beautiful music there, and some intense story telling. I'm hoping that this weekend I can learn to appreciate it more, because this is one of these operas that demands a few careful listens to really understand the complexity and scope of the piece. If there is time, I'll then move onto a careful listen of a Tom Waits concert that NPR has online for free download. Opera and Tom Waits? They have more in common than you think and I imagine I will touch on this sometime in the future. But what I really want to know is, what are you listening to this weekend? - Edward

The Act of Listening to Music

Today the Independent ran this article . In at nutshell it talks about how "people within the music industry are claiming that we're losing our ability to appreciate sound properly. All kinds of factors are responsible, they say: cheap listening devices; listening on the move via mobile phones, or the ubiquitous iPod; and compressed audio file formats such as WMA, AAC and MP3 that allow huge amounts of music to fit on to portable devices. A 128Kbps MP3 file (which, according to Apple's iTunes software, is regarded as "good" quality) is less than 1/11th of the size of the uncompressed original so, in theory, has 10/11ths of the audio information missing." I'm guilty of this. I own an iPod and carry with me 140 gigabytes or so of music -- opera and not. It is my sole source of music. I listen to it jogging the dogs in the morning, plug it into my car stereo on my way to work, dock it with speakers in my office at work and when I come home I stream it throu


Being the first post of San Diego Opera's first blog, I thought this should be a post of firsts. To do this, I could think of no better way than to dive into our first opera of next season, Tosca and a chat with Sylvie Valayre who will be making her first appearance with us in January (but not her last -- we'll be welcoming her back in 2010 for Nabucco ). It is always exciting welcoming a new singer to our Company, especially one that we will be developing a relationship with over the years. Nerve wracking too; I have a tendency to ask a lot from our singers when they get here -- artist interviews, television programs, photographs, etc... all crammed around their busy rehearsal schedule -- I sometimes wonder when they find the time to sing. I was able to catch up with Sylvie via email a few weeks back and had the chance to ask her some questions. It is always nice when I can learn a little bit about a singer before they get here -- I can keep my distance if they seem difficul