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Backstage glimpses with Boston Lyric Opera

Richard Dyer

Richard Dyer is a distinguished writer and lecturer. He wrote about music for The Boston Globe for more than 30 years, serving as chief music critic for most of that time. He has twice won the Deems Taylor/ASCAP Award for Distinguished Music Criticism.

Recent Posts

An Interview with Thomas Mallon, Author of Fellow Travelers

Nov 10, 2019 9:44:26 AM
By Richard Dyer posted in LGBT, #FTBLO

Thomas Mallon shares his thoughts and experiences with Fellow Travelers as both his novel and an opera.
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Modern Opera, Contemporary Creators: Sitting Down with Composer Poul Ruders

May 12, 2019 11:58:00 AM
By Richard Dyer posted in living composers, Dissenters & Rebels, 2018/19 Season, profile, #handmaidsBLO, Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid's Tale, Feminism, Contemporary Creators

Now about to turn 70, Poul Ruders has created an immense catalogue of music, diverse, distinctive, and distinguished.
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Modern Opera, Contemporary Creators: Sitting Down with Actor, Writer & Librettist Paul Bentley

May 12, 2019 9:09:00 AM
By Richard Dyer posted in Dissenters & Rebels, 2018/19 Season, #handmaidsBLO, Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid's Tale, Contemporary Creators

Paul Bentley is the very model of a modern multi-purpose man: an actor, author, singer, historian and opera-lover; he wrote the libretto for THE HANDMAID'S TALE.
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Intense Drama: Longtime friends Caroline Worra and Maria Zifchak on their challenging HANDMAID'S TALE roles

Apr 29, 2019 3:59:45 PM
By Richard Dyer posted in opera singers, Dissenters & Rebels, 2018/19 Season, #handmaidsBLO, Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid's Tale

Caroline Worra and Maria Zifchak met in 1998 at San Francisco Opera's Merola Program. But they have never been onstage together since until BLO's THE HANDMAID'S TALE.
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Conductor David Angus on Britten, LUCRETIA, and a Career in Opera

Mar 14, 2019 1:26:47 PM
By Richard Dyer posted in david angus, Conductors, Conducting, Dissenters & Rebels, 2018/19 Season, #LucretiaBLO, Lucretia, profile

As a young man Angus studied piano and conducting, setting his sights on a career in the orchestral repertory. But early experiences changed his course--and brought him into the world of opera.
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“The Punk Ballerina” Meets Arnold Schoenberg: Karole Armitage Directs Schoenberg in Hollywood

Nov 6, 2018 3:26:47 PM
By Richard Dyer posted in Identity, Dissenters & Rebels, 2018/19 Season, #HollywoodBLO, Schoenberg, Choreography, Stage Directors

Karole Armitage, stage director of Schoenberg in Hollywood, has spent her entire career re-inventing herself ... “I never sought to have a ‘career,’” she says. “Instead I always follow my curiosity and I’ve always been willing to try something no one else was doing.”
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The Finest Opera Buffa in Existence: Rossini's Sparkling Barber of Seville

Oct 18, 2018 10:25:30 AM
By Richard Dyer posted in Rossini, Dissenters & Rebels, Opera history, 2018/19 Season, #BarberBLO

In January, 1816, Rossini was up against a wall, and the person who put him there was himself. At the end of 1815, the composer was in Rome and the director of Rome’s Teatro Argentina asked him on short notice to compose a new opera for February: the opera that would become The Barber of Seville.
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A Daring Mezzo: Daniela Mack Brings ROSINA to Boston

Oct 17, 2018 2:53:40 PM
By Richard Dyer posted in opera singers, Women in opera, Dissenters & Rebels, 2018/19 Season, #BarberBLO

“Rosina is an old friend, but she never gets boring,” says mezzo-soprano Daniela Mack. “To sing the same part all the time would get boring if nothing ever changed, but each new production, each new director, each new concept makes everything different.”
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Catching up with Claude Heater: Original Trio Member in Trouble in Tahiti

May 15, 2018 12:35:36 PM
By Richard Dyer posted in opera singers, 2017/18 Season, #tahitiBLO, Leonard Bernstein, 1950s

As far as Google can tell, Claude Heater is the only living member of the original cast of Bernstein’s Trouble in Tahiti. Back in 1952, Heater was the baritone in the vocal trio. Today, Heater is 90 and has lively memories of Bernstein and of many other figures in his long and vigorous life.
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Journey to Tahiti: The Genesis of Bernstein's Trouble in Tahiti 

Apr 12, 2018 3:45:31 PM
By Richard Dyer posted in 2017/18 Season, #tahitiBLO, Leonard Bernstein, 1950s

The range of musical styles that Leonard Bernstein worked in is extraordinarily wide—but the range of subjects he engaged with is comparatively narrow, and all of the subjects came out of his own life: love, family, and all the various ties that bind.
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