Classical 91.5


Christmas Eve, during the first year of World War I, soldiers from opposite sides put aside their differences and the war they were fighting to spend time together, sharing their provisions and stories with each other, to celebrate Christmas.

This beautiful, true story was told in the movie Joyeux Noël in 2005, and then adapted into an opera, Silent Night, in 2011 by librettist Mark Campbell and composer Kevin Puts, who as an alum of the Eastman School of Music.    

One of the operas on stage at the Glimmerglass Festival in Cooperstown, NY this year is the Pulitizer Prize-winning Silent Night – based on a true story of a legendary cease-fire during World War I.  Composer Kevin Puts spoke with WXXI's Mona Seghatoleslami for a preview of this moving opera. 

Deutsche Welle Festival Goes to the Opera: August 2018

Aug 1, 2018

Join the Deutsche Welle Festival for an exciting month of music, including a special evening of opera August 28th.

Trills and Thrills - Lyric Opera Presents: August 2018

Jul 30, 2018
Lyric Opera presents: June 2018

8/4        Berlioz: Les Troyens (in French)


Cassandre:       Christine Goerke

Didon:               Susan Graham

Énée:                Brandon Jovanovich

Chorèbe            Lucas Meachem

Narbal:              Christian Van Horn

Anna:                Okka von der Damerau

8/11      Mozart: Così Fan Tutte (in Italian)                      


Fiordiligi:           Ana María Martínez

Dorabella:         Marianne Crebassa

Giuseppe Verdi's Un Ballo in Maschera tells the tale of the assassination of King Gustav III of Sweden, who was killed due to a political conspiracy. While at a court masquerade ball, he was shot and died shortly after. Due to censorship issues and political tension in Italy and France,Un Ballo in Maschera which was originally set in Stockholm, was forced to be set in colonial era Boston. This censorship was one of the most frustrating artistic setbacks Verdi experienced during his lifetime. Since the early 1900's, when opera companies perform Un Ballo in Maschera, they commonly revert the setting to Stockholm, honoring Verdi's wishes and initial artistic intention.

Growing Pains: Opera in 2018

Jun 14, 2018

While in the theater, you hear snippets of conversations. While watching Eastman Opera Theatre’s production of Light in the Piazza, I overheard the following: “Where is the Bathroom? How long is intermission? Did you know Jill left Andy for another man?!” But over the hum of the Eastman Opera Theatre Orchestra tuning, I heard the five little words every aspiring classical vocalist shudders to hear: “Opera is a dying art.”

On Thursday, May 24, we're inviting the community to come celebrate The Little Theatre's past, and invest in its future! The Little's historic theater 1 will be under restoration May 29 to October 1, 2018, but before the renovation, we're gathering our members, friends, and neighbors for a night of pure Little joy. 

A new play at Geva Theatre tackles war, immigration, the refugee experience, and the gray area between right and wrong. “Heartland” is the story of an Afghan refugee and an American professor who form an unexpected friendship. It’s a production that speaks to the value theater can have in helping audiences understand the human stories behind political issues.

Our guests discuss the play, and how the arts can help us understand our world. We also preview Geva’s 46th season. In studio:

Carmen on Ice!

Dec 21, 2017

In case this wondrous and magical bit of art has somehow escaped your notice I felt it was important to take some time to share this with you: Carmen on Ice.

This TV movie made in 1990 follows the story of the opera Carmen and uses Georges Bizet's beloved music. Carmen on Ice stars some of the leading figure skaters of the time: Katarina Witt, Brian Boitano, and Brian Orser.  The skaters don't sing their roles, but they do still convey the drama, passion, and wit of the story and the interactions of the characters through their performances. Despite the ridiculousness of the whole idea, it's pretty captivating. 

Photo by: Pavel Vaan & Leonid Semenyuk

Dmitri Hvorostovsky was an amazing opera singer.  He had such a voice and dramatic stage presence, and he was charming, handsome, and distinctive.

I am just one of many who count him among my favorites and mourn his passing. I’m struggling to write anything of substance to explain how intensely I love his performances, and the tears that I’m shedding at the death of someone I didn’t actually know in person – just admired so very much.