It’s that time of the year again! With Christmas just a few days away, we often recounting stories we heard as children and plays, ballets, and other shows we may have witnessed. For me, Christmas has always been filled with reading stories by the fireplace in the living room, going to concerts of Christmas carols and festive music, and going to the theater to see a show. However, somehow the shows performed at Christmastime seem to always be the same. While I’m one for tradition and nostalgia, I can’t help but think about all the wonderful theatrical works that would add a wonderful variety to the season.
It is with great pleasure and honor that I get to introduce you to a dear friend of mine, Andrew Shaw. Andrew is an active music historian and vocalist in Philadelphia. He participates in several performing groups, such as Singing City Choir and Chestnut Street Singers while remaining involved in research and writing for a few performance groups in the Philadelphia area.
The roots of opera stretch back hundreds of years. Each major cultural hub has at one point claimed that their version of the art form is the truest and greatest version, but in our modern world, these cultural versions have all melded together into one incredible genre. Writers of Italian, French, German, English, Czech, Russian, and American operas share the spotlights together, granted their work is engaging enough to audiences across the world.
The ballet, with all its beauty and grace on the stage, has some of classical music’s most glorious and mesmerizing scores.