Thursday, April 29, 2010

Actually, I suspect he's right

Via Intermezzo, an interview with Marcelo Alvarez:
His greatest vitriol is reserved for opera bloggers, whose continual criticism and sniping gossip, he says, damages singers. "Perhaps you sing one bad performance and these websites attack and blow it out of proportion. They always write: bad, bad, bad!" he rants, drowning out the translator in English. "Some artistic directors read these sites and a lot of contracts go." This hasn't happened to him, and he cannot give me a direct example but, he says: "I know it has happened. This is the real cancer of our opera world."
On the one hand: responsiveness to what actually happens is good.

On the other hand: if administrators are actually dumb enough to follow the groupthink and negative one-upsmanship that dominate most opera-talk communities, they're being mind-bogglingly irresponsible.

1 comment:

  1. I completely agree, the problem is that negative press is always more interesting than celebrating the positive points of just less than perfect performances. Of course, the major theatres sometimes get it wrong (production team, conductor or inappropriate casting) and when they do they need to be told. However, artists should be forgiven for the odd off night here and there, after all very few are always 'in gamba' or in top form in all their roles.

    One example of negativity for negativity's sake was the recent Rollando Villazon slag off marathon. His appearance on various German light entertainment shows and a British reality show caused a criticism virus of epidemic proportions and his career was diagnosed as dead and buried before he had even made his comeback.



Absolutely no axe-grinding, please.