Parlando: The COC Blog


See Photos of COC Greats

The same week that David Leventi photographed the Four Seasons Centre for future inclusion in Bjoerling's Larynx, portrait photographer V. Tony Hauser unveiled his tribute to the Canadian Opera Company at his new gallery near King and Yonge. 

Hauser has photographed every artistic director in the Canadian Opera Company's history, from its founders, Nicholas Goldschmidt and Herman Geiger-Torel, all the way up to Richard Bradshaw and the COC's current leaders, Alexander Neef and Johannes Debus. Also on display are his photographs of the COC's most beloved vocal artists of the past and present, such as Maureen Forrester, Jon Vickers, Ben Heppner, Adrianne Pieczonka, Richard Margison and Isabel Bayrakdarian. To these he even adds some of the behind-the-scenes creative workers, such as stage designer Michael Levine. 

The photos will be on display until approximately the end of the month at Hauser's gallery at the King Edward Hotel, 37 King St. E.   

Posted by Cecily Carver / in COC History / comments (0) / permalink


Introducing Simone Osborne

At tonight's performance of The Magic Flute, soprano Simone Osborne makes her role debut as Pamina. She may already be familiar to many of you: this is her second year in the COC's Ensemble Studio program, and she's been busy performing in (and blogging) the Xstrata Ensemble Studio School Tour, the ArtsWay Concert Series, and COC mainstage productions. Next season she's also slated to sing Gilda in Rigoletto and Lauretta in Gianni Schicchi, as well as Mozart's Requiem with the TSO. She was one of the youngest singers ever to win the Metropolitan Opera national council auditions, and was recently profiled by the CBC.

In this video, she shares her excitement about our Magic Flute production. She'll also be singing Pamina on Feb. 20, 23, and 25, as well as at the Special Performance on Feb. 17 by the Ensemble Studio.

Posted by Cecily Carver / in Ensemble Studio / comments (0) / permalink


David Leventi Photographs the Four Seasons Centre

Photographer David Leventi has made it his mission to document the interiors of the world's greatest opera houses in a project he has titled Bjoerling's Larynx. From his artist statement

"The opera houses in Bjoerling’s Larynx stand as symbols of their nations’ wealth and grandeur, their dedication to the promotion of the arts and to bringing communities together. They are spaces with history—architecture like the National Theatre, Prague State Opera, and Estates Theatre in Prague or the Hungarian State Theatre in Budapest that were universally recognized as being so powerful they were left standing through wars, or—like Dresden’s Semperoper and Vienna’s Wiener Staatsoper—which, though bombed, were rebuilt as symbols of their nations’ perseverance. They include a Guinness Book of World Records roundup of superlatives like The Metropolitan Opera in New York—unrivalled in size, and The Real Teatro di San Carlo in Naples—the oldest continually active opera house. There are theatres such as The Palais Garnier in Paris, with a ceiling that served as the canvas for controversial artist Marc Chagall and a chandelier that—after it fell in 1896—served as the inspiration for The Phantom of the Opera. They are houses like La Scala in Milan that have resounded with the music of Verdi, Rossini, and Bellini, or The Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg, Russia, where works by Tchaikovsky, Mussorgsky, and Rimsky-Korsakov premiered. They are architectural statements such as Teatro Amazonas—erected in the middle of the jungle from materials imported from across the Atlantic—built to assert Manaus, Brazil in South America as a cultural centre rivaling those in Europe."

On Monday morning Leventi photographed the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts as part of this project, making it only the second 21st-century opera house to be included (the first was the Oslo Opera House). 

You can see his stunning and detailed photos of opera houses in his online portfolio (there are 30 in total), and if you would like to see them in person, they are on display at Bau-Xi Photo through Feb. 19. More of his work can be found on his blog

Photo: photographer David Leventi (right) photographs the interior of the Four Seasons Centre. Photo by Barney Bayliss. © Canadian Opera Company 2011

Posted by Cecily Carver / in Four Seasons Centre / comments (0) / permalink

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Sara Fulgoni in the COC production of Bluebeard's Castle. Photo: Michael Cooper © 2001



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