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Glimmerglass Festival

Master Director

by B.A. Nilsson August 14, 2014

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  “The performing arts, literature, the visual arts—these are what draw our attention to aspects of our lives that we otherwise wouldn’t notice,” says Jonathan Miller, who celebrated the uniquely human ability to suspend belief during ...

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High and Low

by B.A. Nilsson August 7, 2014

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  Two fish-out-of-water stories that nevertheless couldn’t be more dissimilar find a young Japanese woman trying to please her American lover by herself becoming as American as possible--and a starry-eyed composer forced to allow a commedia ...

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Doom, Glorious Doom

by B.A. Nilsson August 7, 2014

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  Poor Grace Brown! She was a small-town factory worker who would have lived an anonymous life had she not drowned in Big Moose Lake in 1906. Instead, she achieved a posthumous fame that lives on ...

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Better Than Broadway

by B.A. Nilsson July 17, 2014

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  On the heels of Oklahoma, their first collaboration, came Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Carousel, based on a depressing but popular play by Ferenc Molnár. Liliom presented a charming but hotheaded protagonist who gets a chance to ...

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Glorious Suffering

by B.A. Nilsson August 1, 2013

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  Musical portraits of suffering and pain probably go back to the beginnings of song, and the musical techniques of rendering it have since then grown ever more intricate. Our ears are long accustomed to the ...

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Master and Commander

by B.A. Nilsson July 10, 2013

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  First let’s salute scenic designer James Noone. If we’re not going to inhabit Norwegian cliffs, we need something as eye-catching as the abstraction of ship and rigging that framed the stage. But then let’s thank ...

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Transcendent

by B.A. Nilsson August 8, 2012

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  As the second act of Lost in the Stars gains momentum, Stephen Kumalo, an Anglican priest, faces a moral dilemma that threatens the foundation of his faith. “O Tixo, Tixo, Help Me!” he sings, and ...

Glimmerglass Festival

Baroque Style, Direct Emotions

by B.A. Nilsson August 1, 2012

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When the first conflagration erupted, it was a charming kerfluffle of lighting and drums. The next one was more frightening, because by that time I’d settled into more of a 17th-century sensibility and thus was ...

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Americana Perfected

by B.A. Nilsson July 25, 2012

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The two most famous examples of the stubborn face of Iowa are Grant Wood’s American Gothic and the song “Iowa Stubborn” from early in The Music Man. Appropriate, then, that they’re brought together—however anachronistically—in the ...

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A True Blockbuster

by B.A. Nilsson July 11, 2012

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Your average (and I do mean average) summer blockbuster movie has nothing on an old-fashioned, big-assed production of Aida. No amount of CGI can match the spectacle of livestock lumbering across the stage as a ...

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