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Wednesday, June 13, 2007

The Barber of Zilina & Botticelli

After winning a prize last week in the Bartok Opera Conducting Competition, I am now in Zilina, Slovakia, to conduct a concert with the Slovak Sinfonietta. On our program are concerti by Handel and Mozart as well as the Trittico Botticelliano by Respighi, and Rossini's Overture to the Barber of Seville. By the way, how many of you remember the Bugs Bunny cartoon that went to that overture? I have tried to put a link to it here, but it is often moved from because of copyright issues.

The pictures here do not have copyright problems and are by Alessandro Botticelli (downloaded from wikipedia). These are two of the paintings on which Ottorino Respighi based his Trittico Botticelliano. The first movement is an allegory of spring "La Primavera" which also uses a quotation of an ancient Italian song "ben venga Maggio".

The last movement is the birth of Venus or "la nascita di Venere". I was fortunate enough to see the real paintings during a visit to the Ufizzi in Firenza when I conducted this piece for the first time in Trento in 1997.

Friday, June 08, 2007

PRIZE WINNER of Bartok Opera Conducting Competition

it has been an exciting week for me in Romania where I just conducted Bela Bartok's opera "Bluebeard's Castle" as a finalist in the Bartok Opera Conducting Competition. Out of 36 conductors, I was awarded 2nd prize! You may find more info and photos at:
On sunday, June 10, I will be conducting the 2nd act of Verdi's "La Traviata" in the gala concert.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

FINALIST in 2007 Bartok Opera Competition

This past week, I have conducted La Traviata, Samson et Dalila, I Pagliacci, and Tosca in the Bartok Opera Conducting Competition in Romania, and once again (as in 2005), I have reached the final round! I will be conducting a rehearsal and complete performance of Bartok's Bluebeard's Castle on Friday June 8 at 12:00 (11:00 Prague time zone).

My performance of Tosca was supposed to be shown LIVE on the opera's web-site, but due to technical difficulties, it was not viewable. This problem should be corrected now, and I hope you will be able to watch. Please see the previous blog for more info.

Monday, June 04, 2007

LIVE web-cast: Conducting JUNE 6

I am currently participating in the 2nd edition of the Bartok Opera Conducting Competition where two years ago I was one the top finalists. You can watch me conducting via a LIVE web-broadcast by visiting the competition website:

I will be performing Puccini's TOSCA on Wednesday June 6 at 6pm. Romanian time zone (Thus 17:00 in Prague, and 10am. in New Orleans).