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Is New York ready for an ugly Baroque swamp nymph?

By Michael Roddy PARIS (Reuters) - German fashion designer Karl Lagerfeld is a household name; 18th-century French composer Jean-Philippe Rameau isn't. But the two have been doing quite well together in a European opera now heading briefly to New York.

Royal Opera sets accent on youth for cut-rate opening night

By Michael Roddy LONDON (Reuters) - The Royal Opera will slash ticket prices to appeal to students and young people and will revive the racy modern opera "Anna Nicole" for its season opener in September in what management said was a bid to knock the stuffing out of galas.

Conductor Kent Nagano: The surfer wields a wicked baton

By Michael Roddy GENEVA (Reuters) - U.S. conductor Kent Nagano feels he lives in three worlds - his native California, his ancestral Japan and the Europe of the music he conducts. But his spirit is on a surfboard in the Pacific Ocean.

Spanish tenor Placido Domingo celebrates 700th performance at New York's Met

New York, Mar 16 (EFE).- Spanish tenor Placido Domingo celebrated his 700th performance at New York's Metropolitan Opera House and the 3,700 performances he's given worldwide during his career with a new interpretation of "The Enchanted Island." "I give thanks to God, to music and to the public for making this possible," Domingo said in a Twitter posting. The 73-year-old singer also made clear Saturday night his intention to continue performing, saying - in English - "If I rest, I rust."

Soprano Netrebko pulls out of "not right" London 'Faust'

By Michael Roddy LONDON (Reuters) - Russian soprano Anna Netrebko has pulled out of a mostly sold-out production in April of Gounod's opera "Faust" at the Royal Opera House in London, saying that "the role is not right for me". The opera house announced the move on Friday. Her publicist said there was no rift between the soprano and the opera house.

Placido Domingo's Neptune raises his trident once again at the Met

New York, Feb 27 (EFE).- Spanish tenor Placido Domingo returned to New York's Metropolitan Opera in a revival of the baroque pastiche "The Enchanted Island," garnering applause once again for his interpretation - with trident in hand - of Neptune, the god of water and the sea. Domingo, who starred in the opera's premiere on New Year's Eve in 2011, is joined for the revival by Susan Graham.

Modern-dress 'Traviata' upsets La Scala puristas

By Isla Binnie MILAN (Reuters) - Milan opera buffs who wanted a Verdi opera to open a La Scala season in the bicentenary year of his birth got their way this past weekend, but many were not pleased with the new production of "La Traviata" they paid premium prices to see. La Scala diehards were chagrined last year when the house opened its 2013 season with Wagner's "Lohengrin" instead of Verdi in the composers' joint bicentenary year, but that production was greeted with a 13-minute ovation.

Milan's opera house opens season with La Traviata to celebrate bicentenary of Verdi

MILAN, Italy, Dec. 7 (Xinhua) -- For the first time the Milan opera house La Scala on Saturday opened the season with "La Traviata" to conclude its bicentennial celebrations of Giuseppe Verdi's birth. Though "La Traviata" ("The Fallen Woman" in Italian) is nowadays one of the most popular operas in the world, for a long time it has been considered too touch on immoral topics and boycotted.

A Minute With: Opera director Robert Carsen on the Met's 'Falstaff'

By Ellen Freilich NEW YORK (Reuters) - The New York Metropolitan Opera will stage its first new production of Giuseppe Verdi's comic opera "Falstaff" in nearly 50 years on Friday and transmit a live performance next week to 2,000 movie theaters in 64 countries. Canadian opera director Robert Carsen has set the production, which will be conducted by music director James Levine and feature Ambrogio Maestri in the title role, in 1950s England. The December 14 performance will be shown around the globe.

New "Parsifal" is "powerful journey" for all: director

LONDON (Reuters) - Director Stephen Langridge knows MTV video clips tend to have mass appeal and Wagner operas do not, but he thinks anyone can be moved by his new production of "Parsifal", opening at London's Covent Garden on Saturday night. In the second act, New Zealand tenor Simon O'Neill as Wagner's "pure fool" of the title must resist the seductive lures of German soprano Angela Denoke's witch and temptress Kundry. She wraps herself around him and pleads that uniting with her for just one hour "would raise you to a godhead".
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