A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM, opera a cappella now available at Albany Records

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Don Smith pianist

While at Opera New Jersey, I stayed at a lovely retirement community in Hightstown called Meadow Lakes. I met several of the residents and one of the many remarkable ones is Don Smith. Don turns out to have been a pianist at the New York City opera in the late '50s. He is the pianist on the original recording of Douglas Moore's BALLAD OF BABY DOE which was conducted by Emerson Buckley. He played a production at Dallas Opera starring Maria Callas. In addition to Opera, he was the rehearsal pianist for the Ed Sullivan Show and then at Radio City Music Hall for three decades. Don keeps his piano chops up and plays classical music and classic pop songs.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Stage Management's Desk

Opera at Grounds for Sculpture

The busy schedule at Opera New Jersey included a musical theatre program at the Grounds for Sculpture near Trenton. Here, a fancy stroller blends into a sculpture.

Lucia Covers at Opera New Jersey

Earlier this week the young covers for Lucia got a chance to run the show on stage. Although they didn't use costumes, they outfitted themselves in ways appropriate to their characters.

It was good for me too--eight days between performances is a long time to go without a practice.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Midsummer presentation at Opera America

Two pictures taken by Opera America's Kate Ehle from the presentation at their offices last week.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Midsummer presentations

The studio artists at Opera New Jersey presented to readings of some of my MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM, opera a cappella in Princeton and at the offices of Opera America. Here, our conductor, Keith Chambers readies for the performance with an improvised podium of old Opera News Magazines.

Test pattern on Lucia Scrim

Preparing for Lucia's 2nd performance.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Lucia Opening Night in New Jersey

LUCIA got off to a great start last night. Lisette Oropesa was mesmerizing in John Hoomes bloody staging. Scott Altman, Lisa Altman, and their board president, John Salapatas thanked all assembled afterwards, with special thanks to their new collaborators, the New Jersey Symphony.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Lucia Piano Dress

Opera New Jersey is opening three shows is opening three shows in three days. It is an incredibly busy technical schedule--especially busy for the crew and the young studio artists, some of whom are in all three productions.