The COMMANDOpera inbox mail has been ramping up significantly in the past few weeks as theatres across the globe gear up for season openers. The Lyric Opera of Chicago generally commences the mailing season with various news releases of union activities in advance of the really interesting mail. Perhaps the most thrilling of all for one who waits is the announcement the ‘Lyric Opera of Chicago Broadcasts’ will resume once more. To advise COMMANDOpera is a HUGE fan of these broadcasts is an understatement. While the Metropolitan offers HD broadcasts in theatres globally, this venue finds the action on the screen thoroughly takes away from the vocal experience of the work itself, which is why one is there in the first place. If one attends live performances routinely, the differences are obvious and severe in a cinema setting. There is much to be said for listening to Opera as opposed to watching Opera. Beyond this, the sheer brutality of offering opening night performances for global coverage where vocals are the main concern is stunning for the simplest of reasons. Technique. If you do not have it in spades, forget about any night to begin with, let alone an opening night which is broadcast via audio alone. While the Lyric Opera of Chicago only employs the finest vocal instruments from across the globe, it does not follow vocal artists of today have undertaken the same level of technique to support superlative artistry. COMMANDOpera has personally witnessed brilliant performances next to utter meltdowns on the same evening during these broadcasts. They are unequivocal must do’s on anyone’s calendar regardless of where one resides on the planet. Here is the Lyric announcement:
The Lyric Opera of Chicago Broadcasts resume Saturday, September 8, 7:15 p.m.
The Lyric Opera of Chicago Broadcasts kick off the 2012-13 season on Sat., Sept. 8 with the live broadcast of the “Stars of Lyric Opera at Millennium Park” free concert on 98.7WFMT and www.wfmt.com. The classical station’s afternoon drive-time program host George Preston and Lyric’s longtime dramaturg Roger Pines will once again serve as host and commentator respectively of this season’s Lyric Opera of Chicago Broadcasts.
The Hurvis Charitable Foundation is the generous sponsor of the Lyric Opera of Chicago Broadcasts, with matching funding provided by The Matthew Bucksbaum Family and Richard P. and Susan Kiphart.
The free preseason concert and eight operas of Lyric Opera of Chicago’s 58th season will be carried live on 98.7WFMTand www.wfmt.com. The Sept. 8 broadcast begins at 7:15 p.m. and the concert begins at 7:30 p.m.
The first eight operas in Lyric’s 2012-13 season are being broadcast live on their opening performances. (A Streetcar Named Desire is not included.) Preston and Pines will anchor the opera broadcasts, which start with live commentary and recorded interviews at the times shown below.
OPENING-PERFORMANCE LIVE-BROADCAST DATES AND TIMES
Elektra/R. Strauss Sa Oct. 6 6:15 p.m.
Simon Boccanegra/Verdi Mo Oct. 15 7:15 p.m.
Werther/Massenet Su Nov. 11 1:45 p.m.
Don Pasquale/Donizetti Su Nov. 25 1:45 p.m.
Hänsel und Gretel/Humperdinck Fr Dec. 7 7:15 p.m.
La bohème/Puccini Mo Jan. 21 7:15 p.m.
Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg/Wagner Fr Feb. 8 5:15 p.m.
Rigoletto/Verdi Mo Feb. 25 7:15 p.m.