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Showing posts from December, 2011

The Mysterious World of Exclusivity in Classical Music

Recently, I had the opportunity to see a YouTube video of Renee Fleming singing this great aria written by Erich Korngold found here, and I remembered that a while ago there was an often-whispered-about Masterclass given by Ms. Fleming (her first ever!) at The Juilliard School.  And, I remember hearing that only Juilliard students were invited to attend this Masterclass.

That got me to wondering, why couldn't any old person attend this hugely-touted event?  Apart from the fact that there wouldn't be enough room for everyone who wanted to attend, why didn't they at least sell overpriced tickets?  And then I realized the reason: this was just another manifestation of a phenomenon I have noticed over the years of being "in the biz" of opera singing: the hushed-up mysteriousness and only-for-certain-people attitude that is encouraged among opera teachers/students/professionals, and heck, even the more staunch fans themselves!  It's as if the singers (pros and no…

The Answer to All the World's Problems!

(This post is unrelated to opera, but it has incredible relevance for everyone, so please read!)

Nowadays with all of the technology that we have at our disposal, we are used to getting results almost instantaneously. When we need to get somewhere we can hop on the highway (specifically built to avoid the delays that are caused by traffic within cities) and get there faster. We can check ourselves out at the grocery store to avoid long lines. We can order on the internet nearly anything we can imagine, and depending on how much we are willing to pay for shipping, it is delivered to our doorstep possibly within less than 24 hours. We are a world full of people (in the developed countries, at least) who are used to not having to wait for anything at all.

Therefore, it is no wonder that we as a people, are also disposed to getting angry quickly when things don't go our way. Perhaps the reason that in the past 10 years terrorism and hate crimes have been steadily increasing is be…