Jul 27, 2009


It's summer--well, sorta, if you live in NE Ohio. Nonetheless, the languidness of the season (and our break between operas) has set in. My extent of my ambition is sitting on the veranda drinking a mojito. (And by veranda, I mean window ledge; and by mojito, I mean Parrot Bay rum flavored with melted Tic Tacs--I'm ever-so resourceful.)

Still, I can't stay away from opera, but I have found a lazy way to enjoy it. While I can't muster the strength to walk down the hallway to peruse our collection of opera CDs, I can sit on my arse at the computer and browse opera podcasts.

Many opera companies offer podcasts that provide insights and previews into operas they are currently producing. There's interviews with singers or directors, historical background,some music, and more. Some of the companies with podcasts include: San Francisco Opera, Houston Grand Opera, and Seattle Opera.

I'm partial to a few podcast resources I have found because, while they do have some commentary, they feature entire opera acts--or even full operas.

There's Unnatural Acts of Opera podcasts, hosted by La Cieca of the delicious opera blog Parterre Box. You can listen to classic and contemporary recordings, featuring Renata Scotto, Natalie Dessay, Placido Domingo, Joan Sutherland, to name a few. (These may take a little time to download, though.)

Of particular interest to Wagner fans is a page of podcasts of or about Wagner operas.

I'm excited to have found Nikki Boxer's "Opera in the Afternoon" podcasts from Aspen Public Radio. Each month, she hosts a three-hour show with full opera, synopsis and commentary. It's currently a short list, which will hopefully grow, but it does include Werther--which Opera Cleveland is producing in 2011.

Podcasts sure beat schlepping to the library. I like to save my schlepping for trips to the bar, thankyouverymuch.

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