Opera For Everyone
Ep. 96 The Cunning Little Vixen by Leoš Janáček

Ep. 96 The Cunning Little Vixen by Leoš Janáček

January 24, 2022

Leos Janacek’s opera about a clever little fox living in the worlds of both animals and humans has many of the charming and amusing elements expected of traditional children’s stories.  However, don’t let this Cunning Little Vixen fool you.  Her story, and the story of the forester who pursues her, are richly layered with issues that may glide over the heads of young opera-goers while leaving the adults in the room pondering as they smile at the sly references. 
 

Hosted by Pat and Rosie Brooks

Ep. 95 Béatrice et Bénédict by Berlioz

Ep. 95 Béatrice et Bénédict by Berlioz

December 12, 2021

Beatrice and Benedick often steal the show in Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing with their sharp-tongued banter, and a romance that is as unlikely as it is inevitable.  Composer Hector Berlioz was captivated by these characters, and turned their story into an operatic romantic comedy in his final completed opera, Béatrice et Bénédict.  As the music soars and sparkles, join us for this “merry war!”

Hosted by Pat, and Kathleen Van De Wille

Ep. 94 Opera For Everyone Meets United Arts Studies

Ep. 94 Opera For Everyone Meets United Arts Studies

November 7, 2021

What does Salvador Dali have in common with opera?  Listen to this episode to find out!

This episode features special guests soprano Elizaveta Ulakhovich and baritone Perry Sook talking about their work and lives as an operatic couple.  Their newest project is a YouTube series that connects their love of opera and their exploration of the visual arts.  Join us for a unique episode featuring romance, creativity, and adventure.

Hosted by Pat and Grant

Ep. 93 Der Rosenkavalier by Strauss

Ep. 93 Der Rosenkavalier by Strauss

October 23, 2021

All things must come to an end, but few approach endings with such grace as Marschallin Marie-Therese, the iconic character of Der Rosenkavalier.  At once epic and intimate in scope, Strauss’s masterwork resists characterization, at various points telling the story of the end of a romance, the end of adolescence, and the end of an empire.  Published on the eve of the First World War, this opera masterfully intertwines traditional and modern subjects to produce an epic story of nobility, violence, and the achievement of wisdom. Working together, Strauss and playwright-librettist Hugo von Hofmannsthal created one of the finest stories ever told.

Hosted by Pat and Grant

Ep. 92 Cox and Box & Pirates of Penzance by Sullivan and Gilbert

Ep. 92 Cox and Box & Pirates of Penzance by Sullivan and Gilbert

August 29, 2021

Riding high on the tide of their smash success, H.M.S. Pinafore, W.S. Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan enjoyed celebrity on both sides of the Atlantic.  While engaged in defending the integrity of their work against inferior pirated versions, they hastily completed and premiered a show about a group of inferior pirates.  Pirates of Penzance is almost certainly Gilbert and Sullivan’s most enduringly popular collaboration, giving us memorable tunes and characters such as the steadfast Mabel, the swashbuckling Pirate King, and the Very Model of a Modern Major General.  By turns hilarious, incisive, and thrilling, this masterful operetta is a joy to experience.

Furthermore, in keeping with the spirit of a Gilbert and Sullivan presentation, we have a one-act “opener,” Cox and Box.  This show, though comic and tuneful, pre-dates the famous partnership, and pairs Sullivan’s compositions with a libretto by F.C. Burnand.  It’s a charming farce, with a most unusual lullabye!

Hosted by Pat and Rosie

Ep. 91 Guillaume Tell by Rossini [EXTENDED VERSION]

Ep. 91 Guillaume Tell by Rossini [EXTENDED VERSION]

July 17, 2021

This extended version of our William Tell show includes everything from the regular length show, plus more history, more music, more explication, and more fun!

Imperial soldiers, determined rebels, a martyred elder, a plucky youth, a noble princess, a cruel oppressor… it’s not Star Wars; it’s Rossini’s final opera, William Tell!  First performed in the aftermath of the Napoleonic Era and inspired by much earlier legends of a medieval Swiss folk hero, this opera is a masterwork of everything we love about opera.  It tells a story that is at once personal, specific in time and place, and yet universal at its core.  Join host Pat, who, with the help of co-hosts Kathleen and Grant, takes a deep dive into this Bel Canto masterpiece which is both utterly Romantic, and yet completely clear-eyed about the struggle of freedom versus oppression and oppression, shaped by the all-important power of love.

Ep. 91 Guillaume Tell by Rossini

Ep. 91 Guillaume Tell by Rossini

July 17, 2021

Imperial soldiers, determined rebels, a martyred elder, a plucky youth, a noble princess, a cruel oppressor… it’s not Star Wars; it’s Rossini’s final opera, William Tell!  First performed in the aftermath of the Napoleonic Era and inspired by much earlier legends of a medieval Swiss folk hero, this opera is a masterwork of everything we love about opera.  It tells a story that is at once personal, specific in time and place, and yet universal at its core.  Join host Pat, who, with the help of co-hosts Kathleen and Grant, takes a deep dive into this Bel Canto masterpiece which is both utterly Romantic, and yet completely clear-eyed about the struggle of freedom versus oppression and oppression, shaped by the all-important power of love.

Ep. 90 Benvenuto Cellini by Berlioz

Ep. 90 Benvenuto Cellini by Berlioz

June 18, 2021

An adventurous Renaissance artist’s action-packed autobiography provided compelling inspiration for Hector Berlioz’s first completed opera, Benvenuto Cellini.  Berlioz strongly identified with the notorious Cellini, seeing in him a mirror of his own bravado, skill, and passion… and uses this identification to add to the story.  The result is a relentlessly entertaining opera that is by turns comic, poignant, farcical, political, and romantic.

Hosted by Pat and Kathleen Van De Wille

Ep. 89 Trial by Jury and H.M.S. Pinafore by Gilbert and Sullivan

Ep. 89 Trial by Jury and H.M.S. Pinafore by Gilbert and Sullivan

May 24, 2021

How do you get from The Opera to The Musical?  Any answer to that question would have to include the powerhouse Victorian English duo of Gilbert and Sullivan and their ground-breaking form of “light opera.”  Hilarious, cheerful, and energetic, they innovated both in opera and satirical comedy.  Not only were they beloved by theater-goers of the late nineteenth century, they remain popular to this day, influencing the creators of drama, film, and musical theater.

This episode of Opera For Everyone focuses on two of Gilbert and Sullivan’s earliest successes, Trial by Jury and H.M.S. Pinafore.  Join us for a close look at these two delightful shows.

Hosted by Pat and Rosie.

Ep. 88 Susannah by Carlisle Floyd

Ep. 88 Susannah by Carlisle Floyd

April 5, 2021

Although only included in some versions of the biblical book of Daniel, the story of “Susanna and the Elders” has long been a favorite artistic subject thanks to its risqué content and virtuous heroine, Susanna.  Inspired by this story of lechery, slander, and condemnation, American composer Carlisle Floyd wrote Susannah, a poignant opera about the consequences of people’s judgement of one another.

On this special episode, Pat is joined by two opera singers, Mariah Wilcox and Evan Dunn, who share some of their performance experiences, as well as take a close look at the opera Susannah. Evan and Mariah also host Take the Stage: The Opera Podcast, which provides encouragement and support to singers as they develop their careers.  takethestageopera.com

This episode hosted by Pat with guest co-hosts Evan Dunn and Mariah Wilcox

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