backstage@theopera: The TDO Newsletter

February 7, 2012

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In This Issue

Wagner’s Star-Crossed Lovers, Tristan and Isolde

Megan’s Musings: Jeanne-Michèle Charbonnet

From the Desk of Keith Cerny: A Scheme of Delight

Muppet Corner: Carmen

Upcoming Events

Tristan & Isolde
Winspear Opera House
Thu 2/16 7pm
Sun 2/19 2pm Sold out!
Wed 2/22 7pm
Sat 2/25 7pm Limited!

UNT’s Theodora
Winspear Opera House
Fri 2/24 7:30pm

For more information, see our Events Calendar!

Aria of the Week

Dmitri Hvorostovsky singing “Votre Toast,” toreador song from Bizet‘s Carmen, in Moscow in 2006

Quote of the Week

“I love Italian opera — it’s so reckless. Damn Wagner, and his bellowings at Fate and death. Damn Debussy, and his averted face. I like the Italians who run all on impulse, and don’t care about their immortal souls, and don’t worry about the ultimate.”

— D.H. Lawrence

The World of Opera

Albumblatt gets its premiere
A two-minute rediscovered Brahms piano piece, as mentioned in The Guardian.

Alive Inside
Music brings Alzheimer’s patients back into life, as mentioned on Tod Machover’s Opera of the Future blog.


Wagner’s Star-Crossed Lovers, Tristan and Isolde

by Olin Chism

Sometimes episodes from Wagner’s personal life served as the creative spark for later operatic masterpieces.

An early example would be a stormy voyage on the Baltic and North Seas that the composer and his first wife, Minna, took in 1839. Wagner wrote in his autobiography that this was the inspiration for The Flying Dutchman (though the legend of the wandering sea captain antedated the Wagners’ voyage).

A more prominent example would be the circumstances surrounding the creation of Tristan und Isolde. It’s hard to escape the conclusion that Wagner’s relationship with the wife of one of his patrons had a direct bearing on the composition of what many consider to be the composer’s greatest music drama...

Read more >

UNT’s Theodora at the Winspear

UNT’s Theodora is making a stop at the Winspear on Friday, February 24 at 7:30pm, featuring TDO Music Director Graeme Jenkins leading the UNT Baroque Orchestra and Collegium Singers, and extraordinary soloists, including Ava Pine and Ryland Angel alongside UNT faculty members, performing Handel’s tragic tale of love, faith and virtue set in 4th century Antioch.

Read more information here, or buy tickets from UNT online here.

Megan’s Musings

Vol. 5: Jeanne-Michèle Charbonnet

moderated by Megan Meister

I’m lucky to be sitting down with American soprano Jeanne-Michèle Charbonnet who is in town for our production of Tristan & Isolde which opens on Thursday, February 16th at 7:00 p.m. Jeanne-Michèle was last with TDO in our critically acclaimed production of Lohengrin in 2007 where she sang the role of Ortrud. Texas Monthly Associate Editor Chester Rosson wrote, “The villains were embodied in Russian baritone Sergei Leiferkus and Jeanne-Michèle Charbonnet, a powerful duo who might have stolen the show in a lesser production.”

To listen, click here >

See Tristan & Isolde for 25% off!

Buy any single tickets to Tristan & Isolde and receive 25% off with coupon code TRISTAN25! Buy online today or call the TDO Ticket Office at 214.443.1000!

From the Desk of Keith Cerny

A Scheme of Delight

TDO’s General Director muses on time-travel through opera in a new column for TheaterJones.

by Keith Cerny

Martin Scorsese’s 3-D film  Hugo, based on Brian Selznick’s 2007 novel,  The Invention of Hugo Cabret opened a few weeks ago to critical acclaim. If you haven’t seen it yet—go right away! Why I feel this work is so important, and what relevance it has for opera, will come in a moment...

Read more >

Cowboys Stadium Simulcast

featuring Mozart’s The Magic Flute broadcast live from the Winspear Opera House!

Saturday, April 28, 2012, 7:30pm - FREE reserved seating and FREE parking!

The Dallas Opera, in partnership with Cowboys Stadium, is extremely proud to announce the first classical music simulcast ever conducted in a North Texas sports venue! Patrons will be able to enjoy a complete, unabridged live performance on the world’s largest high-definition video board structure. Concessions will be available for purchase. Parking and seating are FREE, though seating is reserved. To obtain your tickets, please visit!

See The Dallas Cowboys’ Executive Vice President of Brand Management Charlotte Jones Anderson and The Dallas Opera General Director Keith Cerny announce the simulcast:

New Jake Heggie Commission

The Dallas Opera is proud to announce a new commission from Jake Heggie and Terrence McNallyGreat Scott, starring mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato and conducted by Evan Rogister, debuting in fall 2015!

Composer Jake Heggie was on-hand in Dallas for the on-stage announcement this month, made by Dallas Opera General Director and CEO Keith Cerny and Artistic Director Jonathan Pell (with help, via a pre-recorded message, from mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato). For more information about the commission, see our press release!

Muppet Corner

Muppet Carmen
A little Carmen to give you something to smile about.

Facebook Question of the Week

Which Mozart opera is your favorite?

(Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was born January 27, 1756, and we open our production of The Magic Flute on April 20th.)

“So many to choose from, but I have to agree that The Magic Flute is my favorite. The Queen of the Night is just an amazing role to behold.”

“I love Magic Flute and Don Giovanni! Such vastly different works — both BRILLIANT. Happy birthday, Mozart! P.S. I’m coming to The Magic Flute!”

This week’s question: “Who’s your favorite villain?” Join the fun on our Facebook page!

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