Saturday, August 8, 2015

Opera Obsession: the wilderness year(s?)

Brace yourselves, Gentle Readers: this post may be answering a question nobody is asking. The question is: what is happening to this blog? If you are regular readers (bless you, I don't deserve you) you may have been asking this for some time. Herewith, I attempt to answer... and I ask some questions of you, in turn. As I've mentioned on occasion, I'm working on a Ph.D.; somewhat to my own surprise, the longer this degree goes on, the greater the amount of my time it seems to absorb. Less surprisingly, the longer it goes on, the more impecunious I become... and the larger the realities of job-hunting loom on my horizon, restraining my natural impulses towards the purchase of opera tickets. So much for the recent past of this blog; now for its immediate future. Being temporarily without funding, I have been forced to leave NYC for the coming academic year. I hope this is only a temporary exile; justified though I feel my complaining about the Met's excessively conservative programming to be, it's not the only show in town, and I will miss the city's rich operatic offerings, from the site-specific productions of new and rare works at Gotham Chamber Opera, to the intimate and creative work of Amore Opera, to the Bronx Opera in my own borough... and beyond. So, what will I be doing with this space? This, Gentle Readers, is where I ask for your input on my ideas.
Ideas:

1) I will be endeavoring to coax my Musicologist Roommate into further guest-blogging here, being Opera Obsession's eyes and ears in the city.

2) Having been visited with an uprush of affection while unpacking my opera CD collection, I'm thinking of blogging on these recordings, and what makes them a valued part of my library. I realize this may sound narcissistic, but one of the things that attracted me to reading (and writing) opera blogs in the first place was the space they afford for the exchange of ideas, feelings, and experiences among opera-lovers. And I think this sort of project could start interesting exchanges. I hope it may.

3) Pursuant to the exchange of ideas (and feelings and experiences,) a question for you, Gentle Readers: what would you like to see more of here? I've moved away from easily accessible live performance (alas.) But what would you enjoy reading? What do you think this blog can best contribute? More posts on history? More reading list posts? More recording reviews? Other?

4) A final observation: erratic as my posting schedule here may be, I don't want to just let this blog die off, quietly or otherwise. It's been a valued place for the airing and sharing of opera obsessions, and I'd like it to remain active, however constrained it may be by my schedule and budget.

15 comments:

  1. more of everything :)
    reading recommendations are welcome
    reviews.
    reminding of video streams and such in advance too

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  2. Did you ever consider a job like this:
    http://buehnenjobs.de/index.php?article_id=11&detail=6367

    Solves all the problems at once: A job, in which qualifications like knowing about history and being able to conduct your own research are actually useful, being able to write about opera every day and even getting paid for it, and having 20 professional opera houses available within ninety minutes drive (beat that NY!). OK, I guess these kind of jobs just don't exist in the US. Too bad.

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    1. That kind of thing would be great, actually... I'm not in a position to take such a job "ab sofort," but I'm definitely open to considering such things.

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  3. To echo Anonymous, more of everything you list there. Also, would you review new recordings of your choice? I wanted to suggest you be added to the media list by a vast distributor. Let me know. They send out their e-catalogue each month.

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    1. Thanks for the feedback, DTO! Also, I would be more than open to such an opportunity; thank you! :)

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  4. I know that even Phds do eventually come to an end. Do you have a date in site? Can you blog about HD like I do? Good luck.

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    1. They do! Ideally, I'm hoping to defend in Spring 2016 (and at least by the end of that calendar year.) I don't think I can blog about HD broadcasts. To me, they feel almost like a different art form, since both the audio and visuals are so much altered... and I don't really feel equipped to report on that, though I do really enjoy the opportunity to see European productions that way.

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    2. I'd say you get used to it, but that's probably not a recommendation. Good luck.

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  5. I've enjoyed your posts discussing books - would be happy to read more of those :)

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    1. Thanks... I'll look for things to add to my reading list. :)

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  6. Step on a bus; go out at Lincoln Center by 9.30 am. Buy $20 rush tickets. Use the spare time to work on your PhD. in the library. Come back late at night. Blog about it!! And don't tell me you can't manage $40 or so once in a while!! Option 2: Live in HD.

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    1. That's been more or less my approach for my years living in NYC, but I'm not in the city this year (and managing an opera budget has become trickier.) I hope to be back before long, though!

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    2. I would love to keep zapping through your impressions of the great works. Your texts often point out aspects of the operas that I had never thought of before; and that is why I love your blog. Keep on blogging--even if it is just once in a while. :) Greetings from Bayreuth! PS. I would love to read your views on a Siegfried finale with a giant crocodile swallowing the bird--which is actually a cabaret dancer!

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