Opera from another angle

Recent Posts

  • The Heart and the Art
  • Elitism, Irony, and The Phantom of the Opera
  • Who cares what? Bring on the why
  • Schmopera + #UncleJohn: The Big Reveal
  • Banff and new buddies
July 16, 2014 3

The Heart and the Art


Our jobs must seem quite surreal to the average person. The opera industry is full of professional travellers; singers, conductors, directors, coaches, stage managers and designers are often in a constant state of transit. It’s not uncommon for an opera-type’s calendar to feature three weeks in Toronto, two in Montreal, a four-week audition tour throughout…

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July 14, 2014 13

Elitism, Irony, and The Phantom of the Opera


This is a guest post by singer and Schmopera contributor Gregory Finney. He has written for us before, to much success. Catch him onstage later this summer with LooseTEA Music Theatre. Guys, maybe we are a little elitist… So. On recently there was a piece by a young soprano named Chelsea Feltman entitled “Don’t…

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July 12, 2014 1

Who cares what? Bring on the why


If I were the artistic director of my own opera company, I’d probably enjoy putting up whatever shows I please. There would be a lot of Britten in my seasons. The question would be, would people want to go see the shows I like best? It’s an important question, because it gets us to the…

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July 8, 2014 0

Schmopera + #UncleJohn: The Big Reveal


Exciting things are happening here at Schmopera. We’ve launched a new page, a place for all things #UncleJohn. Over at, you can follow updates from #UncleJohn-related Twitter and Facebook feeds, meet the cast and crew, and get info on the production and how to see it. On top of that, we’ll be bringing you video footage from the rehearsal…

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July 7, 2014 0

Banff and new buddies


Health nuts Masetto (Aaron Durand) and Ottavio (Conrad Siebert). Well, it’s happening. Yesterday, the whole cast and crew of #UncleJohn moved into their new digs at the stunning Banff Centre. It was a day of informally bumping into each other over meals and self-guided orientations. I caught Leporello going over his patter outside Le café, and talked business over…

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July 6, 2014 2

Lighting #UncleJohn: Jason Hand

Jason Hand

The Against the Grain Theatre crew has arrived at the beautiful Banff Centre, getting ready for the anticipated #UncleJohn. The crew includes lighting designer Jason Hand, who is no stranger to AtG. His lighting design was nominated for a Dora Award for Figaro’s Wedding. With Pelléas et Mélisande freshly closed, #UncleJohn will be the second al fresco performance in…

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July 2, 2014 0

Topher Mokrzewski on #UncleJohn


Topher Mokrzewski is a man of many hats. As Music Director of Against the Grain Theatre, he has been the musical mind behind most of AtG Theatre’s projects, including the Dora Award-winning Figaro’s Wedding. Topher recently wrapped up a season as Calgary Opera‘s Resident Conductor, and his next stop is the Banff Centre for the Arts, for…

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June 28, 2014 0

Joel Ivany on #UncleJohn


Joel Ivany, artistic director of Against the Grain Theatre, has had a pretty wild year. Just this week, he won a Dora Award with Figaro’s Wedding  for Outstanding New Musical/Opera, and closed a sold-out run of Pelléas et Mélisande. Next, he’ll be heading out to the extraordinarily beautiful Banff Centre to work on his latest piece, #UncleJohn, at the Open Space Program….

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June 27, 2014 0

In review: When the Sun Comes Out


This is a review by guest contributor and baritone Gregory Finney. I was sad to miss what looks like a fantastic show. Bravo to the cast and crew, and a big thanks to Greg for the wise words. Feature photo credit: Greg’s Instagram. Thursday, June 25th, I made my way to the healthily air-conditioned Ernest…

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June 23, 2014 1

Desdemona Down


After an impressive media tempest, soprano Tamar Iveri will not be appearing as Desdemona in Opera Australia’s upcoming production of Otello. OA made the decision to replace Tamar after the singer’s homophobic remarks were made public. She recently gave a prickly, quasi-apology on her Facebook page, but it didn’t seem to be swaying many opera lovers and LGBT…

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