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I bumped into Greer Grimsley at 7-11 downtown yesterday. Greer is singing Mephistopheles in SDO's production of Faust.

I asked him if he ever reads reviews.

He said he waits until a show is over and then reads the reviews because they can be insightful. They can also be distracting which is why he waits.

I mentioned being irked at one, specific, San Diego reviewer who seems to have no grasp of the art form of opera.

Greer wasn't surprised. "Oh that's everywhere."

That's depressing.

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Comments

Garrett Harris April 28, 2011 @ 11:56 p.m.

Yes, it just means we have a greater responsibility to help spread the gospel of opera!

I swear, I read one of the reviews for Faust and thought of the voice of the Lord speaking to Job out of the storm, "Who darkens my council with words without wisdom?"

Hmmm. Indeed.

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nan shartel April 30, 2011 @ 11:08 a.m.

i'm doing some classical music in general gospel spreading over at FB...put up the movie "The Red Violin" and a "Mother Jones" article on Joshua Bell

peeps seem to enjoy the classical more as background for some film they like...for the most part Opera is expensive to go 2...i would have loved 2 have seen the one Lise was in (Turandot) but it was over $100 a ticket...out of the retired aficionados price range unfortunately

ah well...so it goes ;-D

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nan shartel April 30, 2011 @ 11:40 a.m.

only one more Opera for u this season....will u be singing Opera elsewhere??

http://www.sdopera.com/Operas/Overview

Faust again tomorrow ..toi toi toi Garrett!!!

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JosephVann May 8, 2011 @ 10:02 a.m.

The problem in San Diego is that we have critics who are willing to praise everything indiscriminately (see under Baldridge), with beautiful word-spinning but with an almost complete lack of knowledge of the operatic art form (see under Herman), with good intentions (see under Chute and UT), with such feverish boosterism and/or self-aggrandizement as to make any informed criticism meaningless (see under Jones Westlin City Beat), or with so much academic jargon that the reader is smothered (see JSmith Reader), or the occasional critic (Overton UT) who seems to live in another world altogether where he thinks the SDO is the Met or San Francisco, and your blog which, to be frank, treats its readers as though they never went to grammar school. Then there is the VOSD whose writer treats the arts as though they are her paper dolls. In the end, the public is the loser in every case.

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nan shartel May 8, 2011 @ 5:06 p.m.

goodness Joseph...ur right in there singing ur acerbic operatic solo

those with limited understanding of opera need wooing...not burying with supercilious arrogance

building a fan base is essential for both the writer and the opera fan

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EcuiramLeVar May 9, 2011 @ 6:02 p.m.

No, those with limited understanding of opera need to read reviews that take the trouble to give them some useful tools to listen with a discerning ear. Boosterism ain't it. Praising everything as if it were wonderful ain't it. Opera doesn't need a "fan base" so much as it needs an audience that cares about it, that won't take being treated like cattle (i.e. "It's wonderful just because we did it, so there, and don't ask any questions." -- the general m.o. of San Diego Opera). And they need opera companies that don't charge $195 for a seat. Informed criticism of an opera production has little to do with building a fan base. That is the company's job, not the critic's, not only for opera but for theatre as well, and for classical music in general. I seriously doubt that you would stay a "fan" for very long of a pop singer who expected you to applaud everything they did just because they told you to -- even when it wasn't very good.

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nan shartel May 8, 2011 @ 5:08 p.m.

"your blog which, to be frank, treats its readers as though they never went to grammar school"

would u be willing to change that to middle school homey??? ;-D

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SurfPuppy619 May 8, 2011 @ 8:35 p.m.

"your blog which, to be frank, treats its readers as though they never went to grammar school"

would u be willing to change that to middle school homey??? ;-D

======================== I would try for "Jr. High School" Nan!!!!

BAM!

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