March 5, 2008


Filed under: fccboston08 — wseltzer @ 4:28 pm

TurandotPosting here has been light lately because I’ve been rehearsing for my first opera production in a while, as part of the chorus for Puccini’s Turandot with the Lowell House Opera. Now’s the time to see how it all comes together, as tonight is opening night. Most of the singers are far more talented than I!

Performances are March 5 (black tie opening), 7, 8, 9, 11, 12, 14 and 15, 2008, at 8:30 p.m. Join us!

For its 70th annual production, and in celebration of the 150th year since Puccini’s birth, the LOWELL HOUSE OPERA presents TURANDOT, a lyric drama in three acts, with music composed by Giacomo Puccini and libretto by Giuseppe Adami and Renato Simoni. Sung in Italian with English supertitles.

November 15, 2007

Masterclass: Ben Heppner’s geek cred

Filed under: fccboston08, music — wseltzer @ 9:10 pm

One of the great things about teaching at Northeastern is the proximity to Boston’s cultural scene. The Museum of Fine Arts is just across the from the Law School; Symphony Hall is just down the street; and conservatories are all around.

This afternoon I was tipped off to a masterclass with heldentenor Ben Heppner at New England Conservatory, so along with no more than 100 others, I got to hear him coaching four young singers and annotating with a bit of singing of his own. The students were superb, and yet Heppner was able to inspire each of them to sing better. I could hear the effect of the changes he suggested, and of course the thrill of getting personalized advice from a reigning master must have helped.

Amid lots of great signing, though, the best moment was discovering Heppner’s geek cred. When prompting a singer to keep the energy up through a sustained note, he suggested “think of renewing a lease,” as in DHCP lease, “for the techies out there.”

Now to see if I can scavenge a ticket to hear his Mahler Monday night…

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