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Performer: Denyce Graves

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New York CityPorgy and BessNew production

Gershwin: Porgy and Bess
David Robertson; James Robinson; Metropolitan Opera; Michael Yeargan; Catherine Zuber; Kevin Short; Eric Owens
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A thoroughly worthy Porgy and Bess opens the Met's season

Eric Owens (Porgy) and Angel Blue (Bess) © Ken Howard | Met Opera
The Met’s new production is directed by James Robinson, who has the characters interacting and listening to one another as if in real life – the inhabitants of Catfish Row have known each other for all of their lives and love, pray and grieve like family.
****1
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Candide channels Ferris Bueller’s Day Off in Philadelphia

Erin Morley, Yannick Nézet-Séguin and Amanda Lynn Bottoms © The Philadelphia Orchestra
Yannick Nézet-Séguin and Kevin Newbury see Candide as a coming-of-age story, placing it in their own high-school years, specifically 1992, making Westphalia a USA knockoff.
****1
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Superb production and cast can't make The Met's Marnie live

Isabel Leonard (Marnie) and Iestyn Davies (Terry) © Ken Howard | Metropolitan Opera
The cast, sets, costumes and direction of Muhly's opera Marnie impress, but the music somehow falls short of expectations.
***11
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Opera in Jazz: Terence Blanchard's Champion

Arthur Woodley (Emile Griffith) © Scott Suchman for WNO
Washington National Opera continues its cycle of social justice operas.
***11
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A Rheingold that works on every level in Minnesota

Greer Grimsley (Wotan) © Cory Weaver
Highly idiomatic and effective singing by Greer Grimsley, Denyce Graves and other cast members, coupled with inventive stagecraft wizardry, make the Minnesota Opera's first-ever Rheingold a memorable production.
****1
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