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Classical 101

At Home With Joyce DiDonato

Joyce DiDonato at Wigmore Hall, 2017
Joyce DiDonato at Wigmore Hall, 2017

Opera singers have to stay at home these days, just like everybody else.

Mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato recently starred at the Met in the title role of Handel's baroque era operatic party of regicide and sex, "Agrippina."

Nothing if not versatile, our Joyce was to open this week as the faithful Charlotte in Massenet's "Werther." With handsome tenor Piotr Beczala in the title role, and a luscious score, "Werther" would have been an antidote to Handel's bitchery.

It was not to be. The Metropolitan Opera has cancelled all performances for the foreseeable future.

That didn't stop Piotr and Joyce. They went online and sang  Massenet's opera in an improvised concert from Joyce's apartment:

Performers in any discipline need to perform. If the theater is not available, if the audience needs to stay home, then the artists will bring the opera to –well, to YOU– and to all of us who need music, poetry, song and beauty...now more than ever.

Classical 101
Christopher Purdy is Classical 101's early morning host, 7-10 a.m. weekdays. He is host and producer of Front Row Center – Classical 101’s weekly celebration of Opera and more – as well as Music in Mid-Ohio, Concerts at Ohio State, and the Columbus Symphony broadcast series. He is the regular pre-concert speaker for Columbus Symphony performances in the Ohio Theater.