Wednesday, May 24, 2006

ATTENTION! Verismo-era aficionados!

An alert here for Boito's sadly underappreciated masterpiece, Nerone. Premiered posthumously in 1924 after the composer's death in 1918, this work has been staged occasionally throughout the past century, but it is not yet a staple item. My feeling is, frankly, that one day it may become just that. I find that it carries strong emotional insights in its music into what it means to inhabit a world where horrible cruelty and incredible generosity exist side by side. That is just part of this work's tantalizing power.

Well, for me, the finest extant performance of this opera is the one featuring Picchi and Cavalieri, a "live" broadacast from the '50s. Fortunately, tonight, at GMT 0100/EDT 9:00PM, KCSC is airing this superb performance over the Web. I hope many of you can tune in. As always, I look forward to reading any reflections here on what you have heard.

Best to all,

Geoffrey Riggs

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