Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Coming this week

This weekend is a crowded one, stacked with major events, even for a season in full swing.  What I'm seeing: first, Trinity Rep's New England premiere of Bruce Norris's Pulitzer-winning Clybourne Park, down in Providence.  Trinity is coming off a strong production of His Girl Friday; hopefully they can keep the fire alive for Norris's sardonic extension of A Raisin in the Sun.

Then on Friday I'm off to Boston Baroque's season opener, Haydn's glorious The Creation.  The soloists I think could not be bettered - soprano Amanda Forsythe, tenor Keith Jameson, and especially bass-baritone Kevin Deas.  And of course the oratorio is one of the jewels in the crown of Western culture - a profound yet buoyant journey from primordial chaos to the garden of Eden - to the poignant moment, in fact, just before Adam and Eve taste the apple.

(I've got a social commitment on Saturday, btw, or I would have been able to juggle Boston Baroque with  Boston Early Music Festival's opener, Dame Emma Kirkby and lutenist Jakob Lindberg at First Congregational in Cambridge on Friday. Kirkby is by all reports a wonder; I'm sorry to be missing her.)

Then it's more music on Sunday - Opera Boston's season opener, Berlioz's Béatrice et Bénédict (based on - or simplified from - Shakespeare's Much Ado, of course). There's advance buzz for stars Julie Boulianne and Sean Panikkar, but I confess the real draw for me is director David Kneuss, a stalwart of the Met whose brilliant production of La Grande-Duchesse de Gérolstein was the best thing I've ever seen Opera Boston do. The company is also welcoming a new general director, Lesley Koenig, this year. The almost scarily-accomplished Koenig's last gig was at San Francisco Ballet - that went pretty well - could a new era be dawning at Opera Boston?  Check out Béatrice et Bénédict (it plays through Tuesday) and judge for yourself.

In my downtime, I'll be taking in "Dance/Draw" at the ICA, and working through another he said/he said exchange with Greg Cook regarding same. I even hope to make it up to the Peabody Essex to catch its show of the Hudson River School before it closes. And as always, of course, I'll tell everybody what I thought.

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