in Lincoln Center.

With music and drinks, followed by more music in an evening tagged as ”born of ice and fire”.

With the New York Premiers of Finnish composer Esa-Pekka Salonen’s Wing on Wing, written for and featuring soprano sisters Anu and Piia Komsi, and Icelandic composer Anna Thorvaldsdottir’s etherial Aeriality (ice) –

and a superb performance by the New York Philharmonic’s Artist-in-Residence for 2016-2017, renowned violinist Leonidas Kavakos, who played Brahms’ Violin Concerto (fire).

After the concert, we were joined by some of the Philharmonic musicians who, following the ”obligatory” Q&A session, simply mingled with the guests for some more music and drinks.

No, Mr. Kavakos was not among them.


May 20th, 2017

The Wall of Fame – part II

Those were the days…! Benjamin Morris, plan for a new Met, 1928
Architect Benjamin Morris, who had also proposed plans for the West 57th Street opera house, continued to work with the Met board’s New Site Committee. In May 1928, Morris presented a plan for the land now occupied by Rockefeller Center. His proposal for an opera house facing a plaza, surrounded by commercial towers, was the origin of what would later become the Center.  Benjamin Morris, plan for Metropolitan Square, 1928

Metropolitan Opera House

May 14th, 2017

An intergalactic brunch

Under Marc Chagall’s murals and the iconic ”sputnik” chandeliers. Donated by the Republic of Austria as a gesture of thanks for the American initiative to mobilize the Marshall Plan, an aid to Western Europe to help rebuild its economy after the end of World World II, the ”sputniks” were designed by Hans Harald Rath for the historic glassware company Lobmeyr and were installed in 1966. 11 of them are in the lobby and 21 light up the auditorium. 

Metropolitan Opera House
Lincoln Center

May 14th, 2017


The Lincoln Center

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wp20160903_213912 wp20160903_2147261The Met’s Summer HD Festival of free outdoor opera screenings on Lincoln Center Plaza was still on. “The Merry Widow” was a “full house” screening that Saturday evening.

Later, seeking more information about the screenings, I read that people reserve the best seats by putting clothes, shopping bags or even papers with their names on early in the morning of the event, sometimes days in advance! They come, they grab and they go – only to appear again just before the screening to claim possession of their chosen seat. Meanwhile, people who arrive a – reasonable – couple of hours before the start have to seat wherever they can find a ”non-reserved” chair.

Complaints to the organizers have thus far been met with indifference and a generic response like ”seats are offered on the first-come first-served basis”. But shouldn’t there be a rule to define ”first-come” and narrow it down to – at least – a few hours ahead, on the same day of an event? Or, if the free screenings continue in the future, there’ll be more and more such ”reservations” each year.

September 3rd, 2016