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Ausrine Stundyte as Cio-Cio-San, Elizabeth Janes as Butterfly’s child and Sarah Larsen as Suzuki in Seattle Opera's production of Puccini's Madama Butterfly. Photo by Elise Bakketun.
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Would you like your press releases and announcements featured on the OPERA America website and in OperaLink? Submit the url to your announcement in the "Submit a Press Release" section. Press releases must be hosted on your own site or through a third-party site like Google Docs or PitchEngine. Please contact Patricia K. Johnson at PKJohnson@operaamerica.org with questions.
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Education Headlines
'Fairies' billboard backfires for St. John's opera company
StaffCBC News
The St. John's-based production company Opera on the Avalon is apologizing for an outdoor billboard that struck some people as homophobic.
Shakespeare's birthday: happy 450th to the Bard
Alice Vincent,The Telegraph
Celebrations across the country mark 450 years since William Shakespeare's birth
Baseball Opera 'The Mighty Casey' Coming To Engel Stadium 4/24, 4/26
Michael Edward MillerWUTC.org
The Chattanooga-based grassroots operatic group, Artisti Affamati, will be presenting the opera, The Mighty Casey, at historic Engel Stadium in April 2014. Professional local singers, musicians, directors, and and crew are coming together to present William Schuman’s operatic adaptation of the classic baseball poem “Casey at the Bat”.
Islam the opera: curtain up on Clusters of Light about life of prophet Muhammad
Peter Walker and Susan Schulman The Guardian
Musical production telling the story of Islam's main prophet has premiered in Sharjah, the small emirate adjoining Dubai
Have Operatic Mad Scenes Spread to Board Rooms?
Janos GerebenSan Francisco Classical Voice
Manuela Hoelterhoff has a fascinating article about the present and future of opera in Bloomberg News
San Diego Opera Members Plan To Have Say In Company’s Future
Angela CaroneKPBS.org
The members of the San Diego Opera association will now have a chance to weigh in on the future of the opera, including on the board of directors’ vote to close.
Bar and Bathroom Lines, Molto Adagio
Corinna da Fonesca-WollheimThe New York Times
When the curtain went down on Act II of Puccini’s La Bohème at the Metropolitan Opera on a recent evening, close to 100 stagehands sprang into action. To the sound of beeping machinery, hammer strokes and intermittent warning shouts, they carried props, bundled drops, unfurled scrims, navigated the enormous wagon rolling the next set into place and secured escape stairs to the floor in what looked like brisk, efficient choreography.
A TV Opera, Live. Olé!
Vivien SchweitzerThe New York Times
The relationship of language to music, and plot to text, is an intriguing element of Robert Ashley’s “Perfect Lives,” a complex and meditative sequence featuring a hypnotic, sung-spoken narrative that unfolds with myriad cadences.
‘Cradle’ is ‘unlike any other opera’
Robin MillerThe Advocate
Times were hard, unemployment had exploded during the Great Depression and the Works Progress Administration announced it would shut down its Broadway production.
Teacher Says LaGuardia High School Picks Tests Over Talent
Al BakerThe New York Times
Out of the 92 students the dance faculty wanted to accept, the principal, Dr. Lisa Mars, rejected 43 of them, an unusually high ratio, according to a February letter written by the chairwoman of the dance department, Michelle A. Mathesius, to Carmen Fariña, the schools chancellor.
In a Hole, Golf Considers Digging a Wider One
Bill PenningtonThe New York Times
Golf holes the size of pizzas. Soccer balls on the back nine. A mulligan on every hole.

These are some of the measures — some would say gimmicks — that golf courses across the country have experimented with to stop people from quitting the game.
John Shirley-Quirk, a Bass-Baritone and Specialist in Britten, Is Dead at 82
Margalit FoxThe New York Times
John Shirley-Quirk, a British chemistry teacher who almost by accident became a world-renowned bass-baritone, performing at the Metropolitan Opera and becoming known as an interpreter of Benjamin Britten, died on April 7, in Bath, England. He was 82.
Justin Long to Costar With Renée Fleming in Living on Love at Williamstown Theatre Festival
Hayley Levitt Theater Mania
Williamstown Theatre Festival has announced additional casting for its 2014 main stage summer season.
San Diego Opera Board Meeting Leads To Shake Up In Leadership
Angela Carone | KPBSinewsource.org
A meeting of the San Diego Opera’s board of directors Thursday resulted in a shakeup in the organization’s top leadership spots. Board President Karen Cohn walked out of the meeting along with a group of other members. Another board member told KPBS that Cohn had resigned. Board member Faye Wilson also walked out early, as did opera director Ian Campbell. According to sources who did not wish to be named, roughly 30 of the board’s 50 members remain active with the group.
Pearl Rising Up-and-coming opera star Lee Poulis on his role in the Fort Worth Opera's The Pearl Fishers.
Gregory Sullivan IsaacsTheater Jones
The Fort Worth Opera is a lot like an operatic fortuneteller who can actually show you the future. The singers they bring are the ones that will be the major stars in the coming decades. 
A topical theme for a company which is far from typical
Roz LawsBirmingham Post
Birmingham Opera Company is known for its unusual productions. Roz Laws discovers how its latest does not disappoint
Looking Back at Life The director of With Blood With Ink at Fort Worth Opera talks about the work and her career onstage, including Broadway.
Gregory Sullivan IsaacsTheater Jones
What does the title With Blood, With Ink conjure in your operatic imagination? Some freedom fighter/author like Andréa Chenier? Maybe the doomed playwright Rodolfo in La Bohème? Probably not the life of a Baroque-era feminist nun, but that is the basis for the new opera that opens on Sunday, April 20, as part of the exciting Fort Worth Opera Festival.
Sondra Radvanovsky tackles opera's Triple Crown
Trish CrawfordToronto Star
With Canadian Opera Company’s Roberto Devereux, opening April 25, Radvanovsky will have sung all three Donizetti queens, including Anna Bolena and Maria Stuarda
#Opera in 140 characters
Vaishna RoyThe Hindu
I attended a very interesting show last week. Performed by the students of the KM Music Conservatory (part of the A.R. Rahman Foundation) the evening could have taught a thing or two to many of the city’s established theatre companies.
Of the Highest Order
Teresa MarreroTheater Jones
Can a 17th century New World nun—a child born out of wedlock, later hailed as an intellectual genius and eventually suffocated under the Catholic Church and the Spanish crown’s patriarchy—still resonate culturally and artistically today, 500 years later? Yes, so much so that two stage productions about her in the Fort Worth-Dallas area open this weekend.
Dallas Opera Announces Ten Finalists for 2014 Maria Callas Debut Artist of the Year; Ceremony Set for 5/22
StaffBroadway World
Ten artists have been nominated and thousands of subscribers will soon be casting their vote for this year's winner of the prestigious "Maria Callas Debut Artist of the Year" Award. 
MOOCs for Arts Managers
Caroline BrentArts Management & Technology Laboratory - Carnegie Mellon
Since their introduction in 2008, massive open online courses (MOOCs) have popped up on myriad online platforms and offered through hundreds of institutions. Some arts organizations, like the Museum of Modern Art and the American Museum of Natural History, have started to supplement their educational programming with MOOCs. While this has yet to become a widespread practice, it could prove beneficial to many arts organizations.
National Geographic Concludes What Americans Will Look Like in 2050, and It's Beautiful
Zak Cheney-RicePolicyMic
It's no secret that interracial relationships are trending upward, and in a matter of years we'll have Tindered, OKCupid-ed and otherwise sexed ourselves into one giant amalgamated mega-race. But what will we look like? National Geographic built its 125th anniversary issue around this very question last October, calling on writer Lise Funderburg and Martin Schoeller, a renowned photographer and portrait artist, to capture the lovely faces of our nation's multiracial future.
Stephanie Blythe pays tribute to Kate Smith in 'We'll Meet Again'
Ross AmicoNJ.com
When mezzo-soprano Stephanie Blythe takes the stage of the McCarter Theatre Center’s Matthews Theatre on Monday, she will do so not only as a custodian of the Great American Songbook, but also as an advocate for one the most galvanizing personalities of radio’s Golden Age.
A Singer without a Pedigree Gives a Life and Death Performance
Greg HettmansbergerMadison Magazine
As soon as you meet baritone Michael Mayes all you can see is what a genuine, warm guy he is. He’s a lot like his dog, Pete, who has made the trip to Madison with him for Madison Opera’s season-ending production of Dead Man Walking at the end of this month.
Using Social Media to Connect With Older Supporters
Allison FineChronicle of Philanthropy
In this episode of Social Good, Alejandra Owens, who handles social media at AARP, discusses what approaches work best with people over age 50 and how nonprofit organizations can promote digital literacy among their members.
8 tech tools every nonprofit should use
Timothy HoustonInsightNews.com
With an estimated 1.5 million nonprofits in the United States alone, nonprofits help with everything from ending local hunger, advocating literacy, and other essential services that help build strong community. Yet for all their diversity, nonprofits share many of the same needs. Here are eight useful tech websites that nonprofits can use to stay organized, funded, and in the public eye. 
Opera great Frederica von Stade stars in ‘A Coffin in Egypt’
John FarrellLA Daily News
“A Coffin in Egypt” is the inaugural opera for the nearly brand-new Wallis Annenberg Center in Beverly Hills, and it says something about the intentions of the Annenberg producers that they are offering a West Coast premiere for the first time out.
Direction in Philip Glass's "Orphee"
Elizabeth BloomPittsburgh Post-Gazette
I had a great conversation today with Sam Helfrich, the stage director of the Pittsburgh Opera production of Philip Glass's "Orphee." Mr. Helfrich is no stranger to Pittsburgh. He directed a staged production of Handel's "Messiah" with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra in 2011, as well as two operas ("Eugene Onegin" and "The Turn of the Screw") and an American scenes concert with Pittsburgh Opera.

"Orphee" uses as its source material the Jean Cocteau film of the same name, itself inspired by the Greek myth Orpheus. The libretto is hewn directly from the film's French script. Mr. Helfrich described the movie as "breathtakingly beautiful," and he has seen it roughly 20 times. Still, when crafting the direction for this production – first staged at Glimmerglass in 2007 – he said he didn't want it to be at all like the film.
Plan In The Works To Save San Diego Opera
Marissa Cabrera, Maureen Cavanaugh, Peggy PicoKPBS.org
The season is finished, and in two weeks the San Diego Opera is set to shutdown completely on April 29. That's the date the organization's board of directors set to cease operations. But at least two board members want to postpone and possibly avert the closing of the 49-year-old institution.
McDonald’s, opera, and the decline of western culture
Boyd CatheyCommunities Digital News
Last November, London’s The Daily Telegraph ran a slight piece about the efforts of a McDonald’s restaurant in Australia to deter rowdy teenagers from gathering there to party late at night.
Want to sing with Opera Theatre? Here's your chance
Sarah Bryan MillerSt. Louis Post-Dispatch
They're calling it the "First Annual," which is always dangerous. But Opera Theatre of St. Louis's first-ever "Spring Sing" is a great idea that could well take off.
James Levine: 'I doubted I'd ever make it back'
John AllisonThe Telegraph
When James Levine conducts Così fan tutte at the Metropolitan Opera later this month, audiences in New York – and worldwide, thanks to 'The Met: Live in HD' cinema transmission on April 26 – will be witnessing something both routine and remarkable.
San Diego Opera explored rebranding in 2013
staffiNewssource
A web-based consumer study, commissioned by the San Diego Opera company last summer, found potential opera-goers want reasonably priced tickets and a more accessible and welcoming experience for patrons and their families.
Wearable tech gloves that will change the way we make music
Eileen BrownZDNet
Wearable technology meets the music industry in the form of these gloves. They include motion technology that helps you to get closer to the music that you want to make.
Board Meeting Leads To Shake Up In San Diego Opera Leadership
Angela CaroneKPBS.org

There appears to have been a shake-up in the leadership of the San Diego Opera.

Karen Cohn, the chair of the opera board, walked out of a board meeting being held Thursday afternoon at a La Jolla hotel. Another board member told KPBS that she had resigned. Board member Faye Wilson also walked out early, as did opera director Ian Campbell.

Board pursues steps to save the opera
Pam KragenSan Diego Union-Tribune
At a chaotic board meeting in La Jolla, president Karen Cohn resigns, is replaced by Carol Lazier.
Group hears ideas to save San Diego Opera
staffCBS8.com
There is late word Thursday that a meeting of the San Diego Opera board of directors ended in chaos. According to U-T San Diego, the board president stormed out of the private meeting about two hours after it started. There are also reports several board members have resigned.
Festival Opera: A Rare Holocaust Operatic Commemoration
Jason Victor SerinusSan Francisco Classical Voice
Festival Opera may be cash-strapped these days, but it’s hardly wanting for creative drive and acumen. 
Five highlights of the opera season
Robert HarrisThe Globe and Mail
Canadian Opera Company: Hercules

Director Peter Sellars takes a Sophoclean tragedy about a Greek hero, 
Class, Race, and Classical Music: the Debate
Tom ServiceThe Guardian
Important, this: a debate on Class, Race, and Classical Music hosted by London Music Masters at the English Speaking Union. Candace Allen (whose piece on this crucial subject you can read here), violinist Tai Murray, and LMM’s Executive Director, Rob Adediran, were the panelists who inspired a wide-ranging, controversial, and challenging debate. Up for discussion, among much else, were the idea of who classical music is for, why we think it’s so important for the whole of society to have access to it, and what the institutions of music education and musical excellence can do to become part of people’s lives in areas of economic impoverishment and communities who wouldn’t otherwise have access or opportunity to be involved in this music.
Could deal to save the opera be near?
Pam KragenSan Diego Union-Tribune
A sharply reduced budget, innovative programming and a list of donors who will step up if San Diego Opera’s current leaders are replaced might be enough to rescue the company from shutdown in two weeks, a board member said Tuesday. Carol Lazier, the San Diego Opera board member who pledged $1 million to save the company on April 4, said she and others will make that case to the full board on Thursday. She said she’s “hopeful” they can persuade the panel to grant a stay of execution.
The Met: What is to be done?
Dawn FataleParterreBox.com
Coming as Peter Gelb did from the music industry, opera lovers hoped that he would display a more distinctive knack for casting and an improved talent pipeline than Joe Volpe offered during the waning years of his tenure. Still, that list of major singers who enjoy productive ongoing relationship with the house has some pretty significant gaps.
Opera's 'Oscars'
Corinne RameyThe Wall Street Journal.
David Hyde Pierce and Joyce DiDonato Host the Opera News Awards
Closing an Opera With 'Dignity'
John M. EgerHuffington Post
After 49 years, the San Diego Opera announced a few weeks ago, it was closing its doors. Ian Campbell, the Opera's CEO and artistic director, said:

"The whole idea is to exit with dignity. ... Exiting with dignity is critical to us. This city doesn't need a bankrupt opera company."

This idea of closing "with dignity" was echoed by Karen Cohn, chairwoman of the San Diego Opera.
UT opera singers stage free, live performance
Kritika Pramod KulshresthaThe Daily Texan
A trip to the SFC Farmers’ Market East last Tuesday would have allowed shoppers to witness a free live opera performance by UT students. UT’s Butler Opera Center, in collaboration with the Austin Lyric Opera, stage a free performance of “The Elixir Project,” which is based off of Italian composer Donizetti’s “The Elixir of Love” at nine venues across Austin. The final performance will be at the Mexican American Cultural Center this Tuesday.
Opera hits high note with 70 auditioning for Project Puccini
Pam McKayRockhampton Morning Bulletin
CYNDI Thomson works in cartography.

She is hoping her latest vocal venture could map a new course for her artistic career.

The talented Rockhampton performer was among the first of more than 70 budding artists who auditioned for a prized role in the chorus of Opera Queensland's production of La bohème.
Teaching music is good for business and law students
Kathryn FehrmanSan Diego Source
There have been more articles recently about schools cutting arts and music budgets. As though music is expendable. As though we and our children can live without it.
Stop Blaming Philanthropists for the Opera and 2015 Meltdowns
Scott LewisVoice of San Diego
The other day, John Lamb at CityBeat wondered what happened to the San Diego Opera and whether it could be linked to what happened to Balboa Park Celebration Inc., the entity charged with putting on a grand party to celebrate the 100-year anniversary of the 1915 Panama California Exposition.
Utah Opera Hosts 13th Annual Children's Opera Showcase Tonight
Opera News desk staffBroadwayWorld.com
Utah Opera will give local elementary school students a chance to take the spotlight to perform original operas in a professional theatre. The thirteenth annual Children's Opera Showcase will take place Tuesday, April 15, 2014, at 6:30 PM in the Jeanné Wagner Theatre located in the Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center (138 West 300 South).

Spring 2014 Magazine Issue
  • From Gold Rush to Google
  • Before, After and During Opera Conference 2014
  • OPERA America's New Works Forum Expands and Explores
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