Reviewed by Sherri Strichman Sunday afternoon (Oct. 15), Tri-Cities Opera treated its audience at The Forum to an excellent production of Puccini's La Boheme. If the object was to fill seats by having only one, well-done performance of a popular opera from the standard repertoire, the company succeeded. The entire cast was solid in its singing and acting, and the performance quality was heightened in every scene by the rapport among the characters. The four young men in their Parisian garret – Jordan Schreiner as Rodolfo, Scott...Read more
UCF in action
Reviewed by Lee Shepherd Take heart, blue grass fiddlers: You CAN go from a square dance in the barn to Carnegie Hall. Tessa Lark, featured violin soloist at the Binghamton Philharmonic's Saturday night concert (Sept. 9), proves it. Rare for a classical concert artist, the native Kentuckian calls herself a "crossover musician," who enjoys every kind of music from classical to jazz to folk. She's an alumna of Mark O'Connor's fiddle camp, but she also played classical music at age 16 in Carnegie Hall's "Distinctive Debuts" program. Lark demonstrated...Read more
Reviewed by Lee Shepherd The Summer Savoyards' The Sorcerer created magic last night (Friday, July 14) in the Anderson Center Chamber Hall at Binghamton University. One of Gilbert & Sullivan's lesser-known comic operas, presented here as a "staged concert," didn't skimp on much. It featured the full-length score and script, but minimal sets and costumes. The show is full of humor and pathos, timely social commentary, beautiful soaring voices and the spirited acting for which the company is known.
Reviewed by Tony Villecco Writing a short story can be challenging; writing a research paper can be daunting. But to actually compose a full-scale musical must be something akin to sitting in the dentist's chair and waiting for the Novocain to kick in. Where to start? How to revise? Months of painstaking workmanship finally giving way to relief and, hopefully, a contented author. (more…)...Read more
Reviewed by Barb Van Atta Nothing like a good “Imperial March” to prove how meaningful orchestral music is in your life. A near-capacity crowd Thursday (May 4) cheered and clapped with delight as John Williams’ sweeping intergalactic themes filled The Forum in Binghamton for “The Music of ‘Star Wars’: The Symphony Strikes Back.” Under the baton of its principal guest conductor, Daniel Hege, the Binghamton Philharmonic Orchestra concluded its 2016-17 season with a tribute to the 40 years of Star Wars movies, charming both the music lovers and the...Read more
Reviewed by Lee Shepherd The Binghamton Philharmonic's concert Saturday (April 29) at The Forum in Binghamton should have been called the battle of the show-stoppers. A massive (nearly an hour long) Brahms' piano concerto with guest artist Andrew Russo filled the first half of the concert; the second half of the program ended with Stravinsky's exhilarating Firebird Suite, a show-stopper to end all show-stoppers. In between, we sampled a Viennese delicacy, Mozart's overture from The Magic Flute. Russo, playing Brahms' Concerto for Piano No. 1, Op. 15, in D...Read more
Reviewed by George Basler A lot of words could describe Hydrogen Jukebox: experimental, anti-establishment, provocative and surreal. So Tri-Cities Opera deserves credit for taking on this challenging work in a production that opened April 21 and will continue with performances this weekend. The production is admirably directed by Alison Moritz and well sung by a cast of six young performers. The opera itself, however, is a mixed bag with moments of emotional intensity and beauty intermixed with stretches of hippie-dippy musings that a young Woody Allen would have had...Read more