Review: Verdi’s Masterpiece: AIDA

Categories: Day Tripping, Diva-Colored Glasses, Do As The Locals Do, Featured, Music Diva, Night Life Diva
Review: Verdi’s Masterpiece: AIDA

Verdi's masterpiece - one of them anyway - AIDA, has it's final Orange County, CA, performance Tuesday, 8 p.m., Renee and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall, Costa Mesa, CA. It is not to be missed.        Aida, the 1871 spectacle usually performed with "a cast of thousands," including animals, which debuted at the Cairo Opera House, is distilled to its essential elements, which are quite enough to enthrall an audience.  Local critics were lavish in praise of the South African soprano, Kelebogile Besong, making her North American debut, in the role of Aida at Segerstrom Concert Hall.                    This is one of the great operas everyone should see at least once.  It is awash with military and political intrigue, a love triangle and enough gorgeous Verdi music to thrill.         Besong as Aida, slave to the Egyptian princess Amneris, played by local diva, Milena Kitic, is besotted with the Egyptian military hero, Radames, the man Amneris wants for herself. Aida, herself a princess, unknown to her captors, is distraught when the victorious General Radames brings back defeated enemies, which include Aida's father, the king.          The ingenious staging in an oversized downstage sandbox, with the fabulous 88 - piece Pacific Symphony Orchestra, Carl St. Clair conducting, on stage behind the actors, works rather well. The chorus and dancers ...

AIDA – Giuseppe Verdi; librettist, Antonio Chislanzoni

Categories: Day Tripping, Diva-Colored Glasses, Do As The Locals Do, Featured, Miscellaneous, Music Diva, Night Life Diva, Not-so-Vanilla Diva
AIDA –  Giuseppe Verdi; librettist, Antonio Chislanzoni

By Angela Rocco DeCarlo Renee and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall Segerstrom Center for the Arts Costa Mesa, CA February 23, 25, 28 – 8 p.m. Aida, the spectacular Giuseppe Verdi opera of 1871, alight with a dramatic love triangle, political and military intrigue, and the glorious aria “Celeste Aida” in Act 1, and the “Triumphal March” of Act II, comes to Orange County, California, February 23, 25 and 28. This is the opera everyone should experience at least once. Verdi was the most successful and widely performed composer in opera history. No opera season in the world is complete without including at least two of his major pieces. The Pacific Symphony, with Carl St. Clair conducting, at Renee and Henry Segerstom Concert Hall, Costa Mesa, CA, presents Verdi's dynamic masterpiece in a full-orchestra of  88 musicians, “semi-staged” concert presentation, featuring stellar performers, including local diva, Milena Kitic, who was the ferocious gypsy beauty of Bizet's Carmen, in thePacific Symphony production of a few years ago. She performs Amneris, the Egyptian princess in love with military hero, Radames. Making her North American debut, South African mezzo, Kelebogile Besong, sings the role of Aida, captured Nubian princess, slave to Amneris. Unknown to others, Aida and Radames share a deep love ...


Categories: Budget Diva, Day Tripping, Diva-Colored Glasses, Do As The Locals Do, Featured

By Angela Rocco DeCarlo The Costa Mesa opera house audience in Orange County, California, went wild. The Segerstrom Center for the Arts’  performance, October 2,  featuring the Francis Ford Coppola masterpiece film,"The Godfather" with a full symphonic orchestra onstage providing the beautiful music of Nino Rota's Academy Award winning score, conducted by UCLA alum, Justin Freer, was sensational. The word was the symphony's trumpet player, Robert Frear, of Long Beach State music department, was the original musician from the film. His featured solo, The Godfather Waltz,  in that haunting opening scene in Don Corleone's office, as Bonasera is asking for a favor to avenge his daughter, primes the audience for what is to come. As an Opera Pacific docent I've enjoyed many operas in that theater, but I can not recall such a vocally appreciative audience. Of course, The Godfather, is, in a certain sense, an opera. It is something Puccini or Verdi might have fashioned. It has all the elements of a great opera - love, loyalty, betrayal and revenge. Especially loyalty and revenge. And there are certainly enough deaths to satisfy that element of operatic trauma. Poor Michael Corleone is the perfect Aristotelian tragic hero. His flaw of family love and devotion to his father causes him to lose his soul. He abandons his planned life to avenge his father. So sad. In ...

Quotes from VIDs
(Very Important Divas)

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