March 16, 2020

Week of September 21: Lyric Commentaries for opera streaming and more

This week in opera streaming, we're headed to Opera Australia for a delightful operetta by Johann Strauss II, seen at Lyric in 2013. Then we'll hear world-class productions at Houston Grand Opera, and see thrilling virtual rectials from Teatro Nuovo showcasing bel canto arias, and from Black Opera Productions celebrating opera legend Jessye Norman. Finally, we're highlighting Lawrence Brownlee and Friends: The Next Chapter, and For the Love of Lyric, two virtual concerts presented by Lyric that you can stream on-demand for a limited time. 

Lyric Opera Commentaries discuss the synopses, music, and some historical insights into the creation of the world's most beloved operas, and musical masterpieces you might've never experienced. 

Explore Lyric Commentaries to make the most out of your opera streaming experience. 

Lyric Opera Commentaries are sponsored by the Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Foundation in memory of their parents.

Monday, September 21

Opera Australia
J. Strauss II: Die Fledermaus

Vienna's beloved "Waltz King" turns up in the land of "Waltzing Matilda" – which is actually Aussie slang for traveling on foot (waltzing) with a sack of personal belongings (matilda) slung over one's back. Strauss's comedic tale of "The Bat's Revenge" should feel right at home in the Land Down Under, where there are 75 bat species. But we digress...

This production from Opera Australia stars Anthony Warlow is joined by Amelia Farrugia, Anson Austin, Ghillian Sullivan, and Suzanne Johnston, and was directed by Lindy Hume. Die Fledermaus was conducted by Dobbs Franks in 1997. This stream will be available indefinitely.

Lyric Commentary from the 2013/14 Season is by Nicholas Ivor Martin. 

Die Fledermaus

By Johann Strauss II 

Lyric Opera Commentaries are sponsored by the Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Foundation in memory of their parents.

Commentary by Nicholas Ivor Martin

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Tuesday, September 22

Teatro Nuovo
Bel Canto in 30 minutes

Teatro Nuovo asked twenty-two singers to record one arietta each from Nicola Vaccai's classic Practical Method of Italian Singing.

This stream premiered on Tuesday, September 15, and features performances by Santiago Ballerini, Lawrence Brownlee, Teresa Castillo, Junhan Choi, Georgia Jarman, Alisa Jordheim, Hannah Ludwig, Christine Lyons, Megan Marino, Dorian McCall, Madison Marie McIntosh, Angela Meade, Tamara Mumford, Lisette Oropesa, Daniel Mobbs, Jennifer Rowley, Nicholas Simpson, Michael Spyres, Derrek Stark, Alina Tamborini, Hans Tashjian, and Meigui Zhang.

Wednesday, September 23

Houston Grand Opera
Monteverdi: Coronation of Poppea

This production from Houston Grand Opera stars Susan Graham, Frederica von Stade, Nathan Gunn, Norman Reinhardt, and was directed by Graham Vick. Coronation of Poppea was conducted by William Lacey in 2006. This radio broadcast will be available until October 26, 2020.  

Friday, September 25

Houston Grand Opera
Borodin: Prince Igor

This production from Houston Grand Opera stars Sergei Leiferkus, Vladimir Vaneev, Zvetelina Vassileva, and Mzia Nioradze, and was directed by Francesca Zambello. Prince Igor was conducted by Alexander Anissimov in 2001. This radio broadcast will be available until early November. 

Saturday, September 26

Black Opera Productions
Jessye Norman at 75: A Celebration

Presented by Black Opera Productions LLC in support of the Estate of Jessye Noman, and the upcoming film Black Opera, this evening of incredible music features performances by Laverne Cox, Damien Sneed, J'Nai Bridges, Anna Deavere Smith, Chauncey Packer, Elaine Sturkey, James Norman, Aundra Clark, Denyce Graves, Richard Smallwood, Sidney Outlaw, Kenneth Overton, Simon Estes, Krysty Swann, Michael Tilson Thomas, Karen Slack, Richard Danielpour, Errin Brooks, Harolyn Blackwell, Mark Markham, Brandie Sutton, George Shirley, Measha Brueggergosman, Martina Arroyo, Justin Austin, Laquita Mitchell, Darren Walker, artists from the Jessye Norman School of the Arts, artists from the Dance Theatre of Harlem, Alicia Hall Moran, Audrey DuBois Harris, Kevin Miller, Mary Pinto, Myra Huang, and Adina Williams.

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Free streaming opportunities presented by Lyric Opera of Chicago

Lawrence Brownlee and Friends: The Next Chapter

Tenor Lawrence Brownlee performs in Lawrence Brownlee and Friends: the Next Chapter, with Ryan Opera Center Music Director Craig Terry on piano. 


The Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Opera Center presents Lawrence Brownlee and Friends: The Next Chapter, a free virtual concert celebrating the depth and breadth of Black artistry. Hosted by world-renowned tenor Lawrence Brownlee, who also serves as artistic advisor for the event, the concert features prominent Ryan Opera Center alumni—soprano Whitney Morrison, mezzo-soprano J'Nai Bridges, and baritone Will Liverman—and three current 2020/21 Ryan Opera Center Ensemble members—tenors Martin Luther Clark and Lunga Eric Hallam, and baritone Leroy Davis. Performances are accompanied by Craig Terry, the Grammy Award-winning music director of the Ryan Opera Center; and Chris Reynolds, current Ensemble pianist. Members of the Lyric Opera Orchestra make an appearance in a special selection, performing from their homes.

Visit our production page for program notes, artist biographies, and video conversations with the artists discussing their musical selections and why this concert is taking place. This stream will be available through January 26, 2021. 


For the Love of Lyric 

Renée Fleming starring in the virtual concert, For the Love of Lyric. 


For the Love of Lyric's starry lineup is led by world-renowned soprano Renée Fleming and features special guests, including Tony Award® and Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter-actress Heather Headley, sopranos Ailyn Pérez and Julia Bullock, mezzo-soprano and Ryan Opera Center alumna J'Nai Bridges, and bass Soloman Howard, with Doug Peck serving as music director. Members of The Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Opera Center Ensemble and members of the Chicago Children's Choir also perform in this enlightening and entertaining program of familiar and revelatory selections from the worlds of opera, Broadway, popular music, and some surprising sources.

Visit our production page to listen to a special commentary from dramaturg Roger Pines as he delves into what to expect from this unique virtual concert. This stream will be available through December 13, 2020. 


Photos: Lyric Opera of Chicago, Dan Rest, Scott Suchman Photo 

Music used in Lyric Commentaries is provided courtesy of Warner Classics, the Official Education and Promotion Music Provider of Lyric Opera of Chicago.