Monday, November 14, 2005

Whither the Traubels of yesteryear?

"Ms. Jansen, who took part in prestigious programs like the Glimmerglass Opera's and Merola, described Glimmerglass as both 'artistically a wonderful experience' and an 'opera boot camp.'"

This from a not deeply interesting piece* in the Times yesterday from the quill of Ann Midgette, but it made me laugh. The Young American Artist Program at Glimmerglass is pretty intense, but it's also about the prettiest boot camp you could imagine.

The article is about why conservatories aren't turning out big voices anymore, and unless I skimmed too lightly, it ignores a pretty simple point that could be made about the role of amplification in this.

Meanwhile, I have discovered the unsettling phenomenon of feeling I should attend the Romeo prima, not because I have much desire to hear Dessay's spin on "Je veux vivre" (which I don't much) or that I haven't heard Vargas sing in years and miss his voice (which I haven't, and do, but not with any real urgency) but because I need something to blog about. More unsettling still, now that we are so many, I'm going to be glancing around Family Circle--no, not looking for Dolly & Billy--sizing everyone up for bloggishness.

This feeling didn't compell me to any of the last week's three big events, of course. No Deb/Ben, no Tell (don't ask!), no Millo pep rally. Wanna make something of it?

*really, I'm not being gratuitously catty. I often like her reviews. And as usual, the point should be made: who's writing for The Paper of Record and who's essentially yammering on a virtual street corner?


JSU said...
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JSU said...

Midgette's editor chose exactly the right title to stir up controversy, and exactly the wrong title to shed light on the subject.

Besides, her premise (to the extent there is one) seems to me off: young artists programs always seem to have a couple of baby dramatics who can't do squat yet but are being groomed with a long view.