Review: “La Traviata” at SF Opera (**1/2)

by  Charles Kruger Sometimes a soufflê just won’t rise. “La Traviata” boasts one of the loveliest scores in the entire Verdi repertoire with soaring melodies, thrilling orchestrations, charming choruses, and exquisite opportunities for bel canto singing. But, even the loveliest music and most enticing story requires some commitment on the part of the artists to […]

Review: ‘Aida’ at SF Opera (****)

by Charles Kruger So, the first thing to know about “Aida” is that it is one of the most popular operas ever written, with thousands of performances, all over the world. In terms of spectacle, story, sweep, and grandeur it is the very definition of “opera” — from its most sublime to its most silly. […]

Review: ‘Don Carlo’ at San Francisco Opera (*****)

by James Lorenzato, Guest Reviewer   Five stars for an operatic masterpiece performed by consummate singers. The SF Opera’s “Don Carlo” gives one a sense of accomplishment.  This is real opera, long, entangled,  and everybody ends up wretched or dead.  One feels one has run the opera version of  Bay to Breakers.  They should have passed […]

Review: ‘Luisa Miller’ at SF Opera (***)

by Charles Kruger Rating: ***** Although Verdi, is of course, one of the towering giants of the operatic repertoire, Luisa Miller is a lesser work, best known for being a transitional piece that introduces Verdi’s “middle period” of masterpieces, including the much better known and well-loved “Rigoletto” and “La Traviata.” Although it does not boast […]