What are the Characteristics of Classical Music?
What is Opera Music? News and Updates!
The Characteristics of Opera and Classical Music News and Updates is my personal blog about opera and classical music. It…
- lets you know when new web pages appear on the Yusypovych website, that give you information on the characteristics of opera and classical music
- shares my ideas and thoughts on the composers, singers and musicians following each of my performances at a house of opera, in a concert hall, or on an open air stage
- lets you know what members of the audience (people like you!) think and how they feel after my opera and concert performances.
P.S. Click here, if you want to read: What is The Opera?
April 14, 2014
Young Mozart at 6 Years Old
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart – a young music prodigy had a very ambitious father, who gave him music lessons, discovered his talent and promoted him in the palaces of Europe. The biography of Mozart as a young child is a story of travel, musical performance and composition.
In Vienna, Austria the Mozarts stayed at Schloss Schönbrunn and performed for the Empress Maria Theresa.
In Paris and Versailles, France, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart stayed at the Chateau de Versailles and performed for Queen Consort Marie Leszczinska.
Young Mozart spent over a year in London, England.
Continue reading to discover more interesting facts about Mozart, as a young child.
View an opera video-clip of a young opera singer performing one of the most difficult arias from the Mozart repertoire.
March 15, 2014
Shevchenko's Kavkaz, music by Lyudevych
Back in my student days, when I first came across the monumental work Kavkaz (The Caucases) by S.Lyudkevych (Liudkevych), composed in 1905, I was overtaken by disbelief that such a work was almost completely unknown in the world of music and I cherished the dream and staunch hope that, one day, I would have the opportunity to perform it.
And so it came to be!
Continue reading Classical MusicNotes by Myron Yusypovych.
January 13, 2014
Opera and Ballet Premieres in 1892
In 1892, 3 other opera composers premiered their operas as well – one in German, one in Russian and one in French.
In 1892, Leoncavallo claimed that the opera Pagliacci was based on a true life event from his personal past. However, there is a great deal of controversy surrounding Leoncavallo’s claim. Interestingly, some historians claim that Madama Butterfly by Giacomo Puccini (1858 – 1924) is also based on a true story that took place in Japan in 1892.
In 1892, young opera singers, who would go on to become famous opera singers were developing their careers:
- Modest Mencinsky would go on to become the lead tenor at the Royal Swedish Opera in Stockholm, Sweden
- Gemma Bellincioni would sing the premiere of Cavalleria Rusticana
- Mattia Battistini would travel in a special train coach car and tour Eastern Europe like no one before him
- Adamo Didur would become the director of the Lviv Opera House
- Solomiya Krushelnytska would have her name grace an opera house.
In 1892, young Ukrainian composers were beginning their difficult and arduous career paths. 1892 was the year that the Tsarist regime of Alexander III in Moscow issued a decree forbidding the translation of all Russian language works into Ukrainian. In time, each of the composers would endure prosecution:
- Yaroslav Yaroslavenko would be denied the right to have his opera, orchestral and choir works published by authorities in Moscow
- Mykola Leontovych would be assassinated by a Soviet State security agent while visiting his father's village home
- Kyrylo Stetsenko would die mysteriously from typhus complications shortly after the establishment of the Soviet State in Ukraine.
Continue reading about these opera and classical music events that took place in 1892.
Listen to opera music online - the Intermezzo from the opera Pagliacci by Ruggero Leoncavallo.
December 11, 2013
Myron Yusypovych – Stefan Szkafarowski
Stefan Szkafarowsky who has sung as a soloist with the Metropolitan Opera (New York, USA) will perfrom at the S.Kruszelnicka National House of Opera and Ballet in Lviv (Ukraine)…
The performance is planned for December 21. «The famous bass opera soloist of Ukrainian descent Stefan Szkafarowsky, will perform the role of Zaccaria in the opera Nabucco by Guiseppe Verdi. Our first rehearsal is planned for December 18», – said Ms. Trush….
November 27, 2013
Famous Bellini Opera - Norma
Vincenzo Bellini (1801 – 1835) is a [famous Italian composer](http://www.yusypovych.com/eng/bellini-opera/#famous-Italian-composer. Bellini is best known for his opera Norma. Between 1825 and 1835, he [composed 10 operas. Click for a list](http://www.yusypovych.com/eng/bellini-opera/#list.
Bellini is considered one of the founders of the Italian bel canto style of music and opera. Bel canto is often associated with the colorature soprano voice, which is a very high-pitched female sound.
Vincenzo Bellini lived a short life by today’s standards. Another famous opera composer, who also had a short life is Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. Click to read about other interesting similarities between Bellini and Mozart.
The opera world is filled with intrigue. In April, 2012, a fictional hoax about a discovered Bellini opera manuscript was spread. And then, in September, 2013, a Bellini opera manuscript fragment was indeed discovered in Spain.
Continue reading about the performance of a bel canto opera by Bellini from the perspective of opera conductor Myron Yusypovych. But, first, you might want to make yourself a Bellini cocktail.
November 14, 2013
Ostap Darchuk in the Opera Faust
I have very concrete memories from my childhood and youth that are related to the opera Faust by Charles Gounod. The opera Faust was very popular in the former USSR and was performed almost in all the opera houses of the empire.
I can vividly recall several interesting reminiscences by former theatre elders about the 1950s and 1960s. Apparently, during that period, there was a separate category of audience members at the Lviv Opera, who would arrive at the theatre, on the evenings when the opera Faust by C.Gounod was playing, at the end of Act 2…
Continue reading MusicNotes about the Faust opera in the history of the Lviv Opera House by Myron Yusypovych.
October 24, 2013
The Opera Paris
The Opera Paris, France and the Opera Lviv, Ukraine compared:
Listen to opera music online - the Grand Triumphal March Gloria all'Egitto from the opera Aida by Giuseppe Verdi.
September 26, 2013
Black Opera Gloves in The Merry Widow
Black opera gloves are gloves that extend from the fingers and up over the arm. They cover the elbow and at least part of the upper arm.
Contemporary opera gloves come in a variety of colours, materials and styles. At this time, black opera gloves are very popular. A curious way of measuring the length of a glove is the “button”.
If you attend a performance of the operetta The Merry Widow by Franz Lehár, chances are you will see the female soloists and choir members wearing opera gloves during the ballroom scenes.
Listen to opera music online from Ruslan and Lyudmila by Michail Glinka.
June 21, 2013
A Night With No Dawn – 1941
Today, on June 21, a memorial evening was presented in remembrance of the victims of the June 1941 NKVD executions in the prisons of Western Ukraine. The musical and dramatic event entitled A Night With No Dawn took place at the Lontsky Memorial Museum…
The event took place in the prison yard and consisted of a photography installation entitled Portraits of Halychyn; poetry by Vasyl Symonenko and Vasyl Stus; fragments from the novel Tango of Death by Yurij Vynnychuk, as well as, excerpts from the research publication 1941: The Western Ukrainian Tragedy by Inna Fedushchak and Oleh Romaniv and works for string orchestra by Ukrainian and foreign composers.
The event was conceived by… Myron Yusypovych, who was also the event's artistic director. He engaged actors from the drama-studio Art Space and their stage-director Ulyana Moroz, as well as the Lviv Virtuosos chamber orchestra musicians.
Gal-info, Serhij Bobra
May 24, 2013
Guest Conducting, Lublin, Poland
On May 24, 2013, Myron Yusypovych (Myron Jusipowicz – as he is known in Poland) conducted the 2012-2013 season finale concert with the Orkiestra Symfoniczna Filharmonii im.H.Wieniawskiego in Lubłin, Poland.
The evening included two young violinists, Anna Malesca and Patrycja Pojenta, who performed as soloists in Tzigane by Maurice Ravel and Carmen Fantasy by Pablo de Saraste. Additionally, Roman Lasocki entertained the audience with his thoughts on music and his performance of the Violin Concerto №7 by Graźyna Bacewicz, a contemporary Polish composer.
A highlight of the evening was Piotr Tchaikovsky’s final symphony – Symphony №6 in B minor (Pathétique).
Continue reading: Classical MusicNotes on Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky and his Ukrainian roots.
April 29, 2013
The Passions of Christ in Lviv
A Lenten concert of classical music, The Passions of Christ, was presented for the citizens and visitors of Lviv. The Lviv Virtuosos Chamber Orchestra under the direction of Myron Yusypovych performed in the square in front of The Holy Eucharist Church.
«…as people listened to the music, everyone had the opportunity to reflect on their family and friends…», said Andriy Shevtsiv, head of the Lviv City Administration, Internal Policy Department.
«Day», Pavlo Palamarchuk
Photo: Lesya Mezhva
April 18, 2013
The Magic Flute – A Premiere
«The Magic Flute is a fairy tale. Nevertheless it is a deeply philosophical work. The main idea in the production is to portray human destiny». We are informed by the production's conductor Myron Yusypovych of the S.Krushelnytska Lviv Opera and Ballet Theatre – «It is not suprising that this work was admired by Beethoven, Schopenhauer…»
ZIK-TV, Alina Broda, Andriy Mykytiuk (April 15, 2013)
The Magic Flute… is comprised of two acts and was premiered in Vienna in 1791… the Lviv premiere took place a year after the Vienna one in 1792…. As explained by Nadiya Trush, the Lviv Opera's media liason, «… our performers perform the singing parts in German and the speaking parts in Ukrainian… For this production, they took speical German lessons…»
«Day», Tetyana Kozyryeva (April 16, 2013)
Expressive and yet emotionally restrained, full of pageantry and colour was the premiere of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's opera The Magic Flute at the Lviv Opera… In this opera, the focus is on love. But not as a personal drama or tradegy. Instead, the main character must undergo a series of tests. To be led along a virtuous path to a state of enlightenement, he must mislead his true love as to his feelings. The final test the lovers conquer together.
«Ratusha», Natalya Dudko (April 18, 2013)
April 16, 2013
The Unforgettable Kvitka
…last week, I had the good fortune to hear her magical voice at the Lviv Philharmonia during an evening of Ukrainian song – The Unforgettable Kvitka. The atmosphere, the energy, the singing, the music by the Lviv Virtuosos Chamber Orchestra enthralled and, - a standing ovation… Oksana Mukha claims this energy comes from the audience…
«…we were giving everything we had! The first song My love!... was filled with emotions and a powerful energy. This is exactly as it should be on stage. I saw how the audience reacted to all the songs – they liked them and that is what is most important. For me, I think it is wonderful that finally Kasey Cisyk's songs were performed with an orchestra. Myron Yusypovych, the Lviv Virtuosos – we all gave our ultimate best. I'm really happy!
Lvivs'ka Poshta, Iryna Tsytsak
April 9, 2013
The Magic Flute – A Premiere
On April 13, 14 and 18 there will be a premiere showing of The Magic Flute, a 2 act opra by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart in the S.Krushelnytska National Opera and Ballet Theatre of Lviv…
Nadiya Trush, press agent for the theatre explained… «In the end, at the height of the drama, the forces of darkness withdraw. The sun rises. The people greet Light, Wisdom and Love which will rule the world for ever and ever.»
Lvivski novyny (09.04.2013)
The production director is Zbigniew Chrzanowski, a merited artist of Poland, production stage design is by Tadej Ryndzak, a national artist of Ukraine and production musical direction is by Myron Yusypovych, a merited artist of Ukraine.
March 5, 2013
The Most Famous Opera – Carmen
…everytime I immerse myself into the nuances of a famous opera or symphony and its musical score, after a certain period of time, I catch myself feeling an acute need to perform precisely THIS particular piece. It is at that moment, that I find my life controlled by that specific score. For a limited period of time, it becomes my greatest passion. There is an overwhelming desire to transmit this temporary, but extremely strong, love for this particular music, to the audience – to enthrall and prevail upon them this all-consuming feeling. If successful, I, once again, get a feeling of immense spiritual satisfaction.
Continue reading about the most famous opera and MusicNotes by Myron Yusypovych.
Click to discover Carmen the opera.
February 4, 2013
When professional conversations turn to the topic of a Bellini opera, in most cases the focus is on the performance skills of the opera singers. This is not a mere coincidence. It takes great skill to convey the finest nuances and emotional states of the opera characters expressly through “beautiful singing”. For this is the strength and detemining factor in the success of a Bellini opera.
Continue reading MusicNotes on performing a Vincenzo Bellini Opera by Myron Yusypovych.
Click to discover famous Italian operas.
January 8, 2013
Escamillo and Carmen in the Opera
Who are the characters in Carmen, the Opera?
What are the main conflicts and themes in Carmen the opera?
Where in the world is Carmen the opera?
Why do some People claim that Carmen the opera was not successful?
How did Carmen the opera become so-o-o-o famous?
Click to explore this and more about Carmen, the opera by Georges Bizet.
Listen to opera music online of the Bohemian Dance from Act 4 of Carmen, the opera by Georges Bizet.
December 11, 2012
Aida – Famous Verdi Work
Click to find answers to crossword clues about a Verdi work.
Listen to opera music online of the Grand Opening Chorus – Toast (Coro d’introduzione) from Act I from the opera work Ernani by Giuseppe Verdi.
December 3, 2012
Myron Yusypovych in Odessa
And Maestro Myron Yusypovych! How magnificent he was that night!
He transitioned from the pessimistic, depressive, awesome and powerful Shostakovich to the optimistic, radiant and joyful Lutoslawski. And in each piece, the conductor was remarkably true and accurate to the original. But most importantly, he gave his all with honesty and an open soul.
Bravo, bravo Maestro! You captivated us all – no exceptions! Your eyes told us that you discerned this. And that’s great!
Finally, a surprise from Maestro Yusypovych. In all this passion, I completely forgot about the surprise which the maestro had promised us, journalists, during our meeting a day before the concert. But forget I did! As a result, this small and joyous piece became the very best end for this exquisite evening.
The Maestro with his unending love of Ukrainian music (and now, even I think that it is impossible not to fall in love with this music) gave us a truly beautiful melody. Indeed, it is called simply A Melody and is the work of our illustrious master composer, Myroslav Skoryk. In the end, it was impossible to separate the orchestra on the stage from the audience in the auditorium – everyone erupted in a joyous, endless round of applause. That evening, under the magical sounds of the orchestra undying feelings were awakened in all of us.
November 6, 2012
Opera pumps are shoes worn with formal wear – white tie and tails. This is the traditional wear of opera conductors.
Click, to discover 6 interesting fun facts about opera pumps. Who wears opera pumps? Who doesn’t wear opera pumps? Who should wear opera pumps?
Click to view an opera video clip of the Lviv Opera House Orchestra performing Symphony №8, part 3 by Dmitri Shostakovich. Take a close look to see if opera conductor Myron Yusypovych is wearing opera pumps,!
October 5, 2012
Oleh Krysa is Visiting Lviv
Krysa's Jubilee Celebrations: He will perform with his brother, his wife and three orchestras.
Oleh Krysa and the orchestra «Lviv Virtuosos» are putting the finishing touches, in preparation for their Sunday evening performance. At that time, Alfred Schnittke's Concerto Grosso, which was originally dedicated to O.Krysa, will be performed in Lviv for the first time.
Krysa: Just touch the string.
Yusypovych: More above the string.
Yusypovych: Legatissiom with the tip of the bow. Above the string.
You can view the entire video news-report by clicking here (in Ukrainian).
Oksana Senyshyn, Oleksiy Shelkovyj
October 4, 2012
Oleh Krysa in Lviv
Oleh Krysa, the world renowned virtuoso-violinist, who will be celebrating his 70th birthday and 50 years of artistic endeavours will be an honoured guest at the 18th Festival.
… the Jubilee Concert with Oleh Krysa will take place on Sunday, October 7. The violinist will perform together with him brother, Bohdan Krysa and the Chamber Orchestra «Lviv Virtuosos»… The concert will be conducted by Myron Yusypovych… It will be the Lviv premiere of the Concerto Grosso №3 for Two Violins, Harpsichord and Strings by Alfred Schnittke, a piece originally dedicated to Oleh Krysa by the composer….
September 17, 2012
Opera House Theatre Ceiling Lights in Lviv
Some of the greatest and most famous opera house theatres in the world are much more than places that simply house opera. A house of opera is often a showcase of incredibly beautiful art.
The Opera House Theatre in Lviv, Ukraine is unique in its art. Did you know that the main auditorium ceiling is a showcase for 12 different artists – sculptors and painters?
Click to listen online to opera music from Richard Wagner’s Lohengrin as you discover the beauty of the Lviv Opera House Theatre auditorium.
Continue reading to find out the names of the 12 artists, who created the beautiful art at the Opera House Theatre in Lviv.
December 15, 2011
Opera House Seating Chart
Have you ever looked at an opera house seating chart and wondered where the best seat is?
Perhaps, you are a regular opera enthusiast. And, you are planning to attend an opera performance in an house of opera you have never been to. What are the points you need to consider?
Perhaps, you are a newbie to the world of opera. Would you like some insight on where to start trying out the various seating options?
Click to listen online to opera music from Georges Bizet’s Carmen as you discover how to choose the best seat in the house from an opera house seating chart.
Continue reading about choosing seats from an opera house seating chart.
December 6, 2011
Ukrainian Music in Lviv
… «Ukrainians possess a huge quantity of classical music. Unfortunately, this music is rarely performed and, as a result, is not well known. Around the world, many countries establish airtime quotas; for example, Canada, Australia, France… Experience in these and other countries has shown that such quotas encourage young performers, composers and authors to create, produce and grow, which subsequently enables the development of high-quality products,» - said Myron Yusypovych.
Putevoditel po Lvovu (www.guid.lviv.ua)
November 26, 2011
Lviv Honoured the Victims of the Holodomor
… Flags were lowered to half-mast on all government buldings today. At 4:00pm, a city wide moment of silence was observed. Various diginitaries… placed arrangements of rye and wheat stalks and baskets of flowers at the Holodomor Commemorative Plaque … lit candles in memory of the innocent victims.
… At an evening «Concert-Requiem in Memory of the Victims of the Holodomor» in the Lviv Opera, the orchestra of the S.Krushelnytska Lviv National Opera and Ballet Theatre, under the guidance of Myron Yusypovych, performed works by Yakiv Stepovyy, Yevhen Stankovych, Samuel Barber, Tomaso Albinoni, Ottorino Respighi, Oksana Herasymenko.
… The Commemorative Day for the Victims of the Holodomor is an annual national day of mourning in Ukraine which falls on the fourth Saturday of November. Officially, 24 countries of the international community have recognized the Holodomor as a genocide of the Ukrainian people.
November 25, 2011
Day of Mourning – Holodomor
Flags will be lowered to half-mast on all government buildings tomorrow. A black ribbon, a sign of mourning, will be tied to all flags on residential buildings…
Symbolic candles will be lit in memory of the innocent victims in the square in front of the T.Shevchenko monument at 4:00pm.
On this day, there will be a Special Commemorative Concert-Requiem to the memory of the victims of the Holodomor in the Lviv Opera …
«As we remember the victims of the Holodomor, we remind ourselves of this monstrous occurrrence in our history and ponder the inadmissability of it ever happening again the future. I am a musician – a conductor. Consequently, on this day I will be standing on the conductor's podium and will be conducting a Concert-Requiem. From time immemorial, music inspired, pacified and united. I invite everyone to join us at the Opera House as we remember the victims of the Holodomor» – said conductor Myron Yusypovych.
November 9, 2011
Mozart in Lviv
…Researchers claim that the music of Mozart positively impacts on all living organisms. And so, according to the concert organisors, precisely at this time of the year, attending a Mozart concert is a safe and pleasant way to fight off seasonal depression…
The program includes Symphony №39, as well as fragments from Mozart's operas The Marriage of Figaro, Don Juan, and The Magic Flute. Myron Yusypovych conducts…
November 5, 2011
Young Opera Singer Yevhen Orlov
In opera, the bass voice is usually reserved for majestic, aged and pompous characters. As a result, bass roles are not usually associated with young opera singers.
Click to view an opera video clip of a young opera singer, Yevhen Orlov, performing the bass aria of King Rene from the opera Iolanta by Piotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky.
The role of King Rene is a difficult role to sing for a young opera singer. In it, the young singer must portay a character that is much older than he is himself.
In preparing for the role of King Rene and particularly the scene in the opera video clip, the young singer needs to portray the emotional struggles of a father’s love for his daughter. These are emotions that are not common for young people and will probably require a great deal of preparatory work.
Continue reading about the young opera singer Yevhen Orlov.
October 30, 2011
On the occasion of the 180th Anniversary of the Belgian monarchy, Karen Vermeiren charmed the audience with her vocal mastery….
The Honorary Consul of the Kingdom of Belgium in the City of Lviv, Mr. Yaroslav Hartsula, addressed the audience with official greetings…
The evening was By Royal Command – Celebrating Belgium. The opera singer was accompanied by the Lviv Opera Orchetra. Myron Yusypovych conducted…
Under Karen Vermeiren's soprano, the audience immersed itself first, into the humorous motif's of Mozart's The Marriage of Figaro and Don Juan and then, into the lyrico-tragic arias, where the singer transformed herself into the various heroines. In her voice, we sensed Cio-Cio San from the opera Madama Butterfly by Puccini, Elisabeth from Wagner's Tannhäuser and Rusalka from Dvorzak's opera. With bated breath, the audience experienced the incredible musical tension present in the performance by the orchestra of a ballet suite fragment from the opera Faust by Gounod and The Stolen Happiness by Mejtus. At the end of the eveing, Karen Vermeiren delighted and surprised the Lviv audience, when she performed On a moonlight night in Ukrainian.
October 28, 2011
180 Years of the Belgian Monarchy
Myron Yusypovych: During orchestra rehearsals some of the better musicians of the orchestra, those who have seen and heard a lot, came up to me absolutely delighted. «Listen, to how she sings», they said. Truly, her voice is like a fine instrument. Her voice is clear. She isn't simply belting out a great sound and holding her fermatas. She plays with it. She has control over it.
Voice-over: This soloist has Ukrainian roots. Her grandmother was from the village of Oleksandrivka in the Zaporizhia region of Ukraine. During WWII she emigrated to Germany, and subsequently to Belgium. Nevertheless, for Karen, this is her first trip to her ancestral homeland.
Click to view the video-report (in Ukrainian)!
/Marichka Kryzhanivska, Oleh Kukhar/
October 15, 2011
Opera is Music
What is a simple definition of opera? A dictionary definition of opera? Opera defined from an Italian perspective? Opera defined from a contemporary opera organization’s point of view? An opera conductor’s perspective on the definition of opera?
Click to listen to the famous Toreador Song and March from the opera Carmen by Georges Bizet as you discover the many definitions of opera.
Continue reading: Definition of Opera.
October 5, 2011
Lviv Opera House
The Lviv House of Opera is a unique cultural, historical, architectural and social institution.
Situated in the Western regions of Ukraine, the Lviv Opera House celebrated its 110th Anniversary in 2010.
Continue reading to discover the interesting features of the Solomija Kruszelnicka House of Opera and Ballet in Lviv, Ukraine.
September 28, 2011
Festivals in Lviv
The IV International Chamber Music Festival, at the Lviv Philharmonia is over….
and, already on September 30, The 17th International Festival of Contemporary Music will begin….
«The Festival Contrasts aims to present contemporary Ukrainian music in the greater world context. This Festival enables the listener to experience the many facets of our time through the medium of music.» – explains Myron Yusypovych, conductor and Festival Contrastsparticipant.
September 21, 2011
Classical Music in Dnipropetrovsk
…The Philharmonic Orchestra will perform a concert of Memorable and Graceful Waltz Music. The bewitching soprano, Natalya Dytiuk, as well as the talented conductor, Myron Yusypovych, are sure to satisfy classical music fans with the thrilling and immortal masterpieces of J.Strauss, M.Glinka, P.Tchaikovsky and others.
Kultura – Dnipropetrovsk
July 28, 2011
The Leoncavallo Opera
Ruggero Leoncavallo was slapped with a lawsuit for plagiarizing the plot for the opera Pagliacci. In his defense, Leoncavallo claimed that the opera plot was based on a childhood experience.
But, evidence seems to suggest that Leoncavallo lied. There are a lot of similarities between the works of:
and the plot of the opera Pagliacci by Leoncavallo.
View an opera video clip and continue reading about the controversy surrounding Leoncavallo and the clown plot for Pagliacci.
July 18, 2011
In 1986, I interned at the Kirov Theatre in Leningrad as a young conductor. At that time, I had the opportunity to visit the Central Music Archives of the USSR Composers’ Union in Moscow. I remember, that at that time there were at least 8 operas by Uzbek and Tadzik composers about the heroic antics of communal farm peasants working the cotton fields.
During the USSR period, a great number of Soviet operas, symphonies, oratorio and cantatas were written. But, after the disintegration of the Soviet Union, only a relative few of these musical compositions have continued to be performed.
Why have they been shelved?....
Continue reading and listen to an excerpt from an opera written during the Soviet period.
July 6, 2011
According to Puccini’s plan, the musical orchestral episode – intermezzo, which introduces Scene 2, Act 2 of the opera Madama Butterfly, doesn’t have an ending.
This brilliant episode in Puccini’s score, has bothered and intrigued me for many years. It even inspired me to write several lines of poetry that became part of my Reflections on the Opera.
In time, an opportunity came up and I was motivated, once again, to reasses how to include this musical fragment in a concert.
Continue reading and listen to the Intermezzo from Puccini’s Opera Madama Butterfly.
June 22, 2011
Young Male Opera Singer
In Lviv, Ukraine a number of young opera singers can improve their performance skills as they work under the guiding hand of Myron Yusypovych.
As a participant in a young artist program, Serhiy Sevastyanov, a young male opera singer, had the chance:
- to receive specialized individual vocal coaching
- to sing a prepared aria in recital
- to perform the opera aria in concert with an professional orchestra.
Click to view an opera video clip of the two performances. A young male opera singer sings Varlaam's «Drinking Song» from the opera Boris Godunov by Modest Mussorgsky.
Continue reading: Young Male Opera Singer – Serhiy Sevastyanov
June 18, 2011
Lviv Remembers the Victims of 1941
…exactly 70 years ago, between May and July 1941, two totalitarian ideologies, communism and fascism, battled for supremacy. The citizens of Lviv had the misfortune to experience the full brutality of each regime. The local population, people of many different nationalities, became the victims of this ideological battle. And so, it is the responsibility of every one of us, who is alive today, to honour their memory and to remind ourselves about potential current threats – emphasized M.Yusypovych.
He explained why he specifically chose Symphony №14 by Dmitri Shostokovich. In this piece, the composer was able to to express the feelings of an individual, who had personally experienced the horrors of the totalitarian regimes of the 20th century through a synthesis of words and music….
Ninel Kysilevska UKRINFORM
June 10, 2011
back l-r: Amartuvshin, S.Battumur, M.Kublashvili, M.Yusypovych, A.Derouard, E.Deleu. front l-r: A.Lavrov, S.Molchanov, M.Chotabaev
On June 10, 2011, at the Lviv Philharmonia, we experienced a concert of young opera singers that, without exaggeration, can be called an event of high artistic merit.
Five young opera singers, winners of various international vocal competitions, performed a solid program from the classical opera repertoire.
Every member of this brilliant group of five presented a clear and full opera voice. Each had a unique vocal timbre. But, it wasn't just their voices. In addition to demonstating an extremely high level of vocal mastery, clarity and expression, they portrayed extraordinary elegance and stage presence. When you consider that these young performers are in their early 20s, it becomes even more incredible.
I fully appreciated all five: Medet Chotabaev (tenor), Amartuvshin Enkhbat (bass-baritone), Maria Kublashvili (coloratura soprano), Alexei Lavrov (baritone), Anne Derouard (dramatic soprano). However, the singer from Mongolia deserves special mention.
The performance by 24 year old Amartuvshin of Rigoletto's aria «Cortigiani, vil razza dannata» from G.Verdi's opera was a revelation and a bombshell. And, I mean this as an experienced conductor. For me, it was that rare occurrence when all nuances of the opera character's portrayal were met. The young bass-baritone fulfilled all of the norms and requirements of classical opera, while maintaining a true Verdi style of vocal performance.
I predict that no matter how much Amartuvshin may love the great expanses of his homeland, he will not remain in Ulaanbaatar for long. There is a great world waiting to discover him.
My hope is that, in the not too distant future, when he travels from Mongolia to some Staatsoper or Teatro Dell'Opera, he makes a small detour and, once again, visits Lviv.
May 30, 2011
6 Opera Tenors in Poland
In the opera world, opera tenors hold an esteemed position. Many would agree that the opera tenor (or, at least those tenors, who truly sparkle) are «the icing on the cake» in any opera performance.
Since The Three Tenors in Concert project propelled the opera tenor to international fame, the popularity of opera tenors has skyrocketed around the world. Suddenly, people who had never previously listened to opera music, decided they like it and wanted to attend a performance.
I have had the opportunity to entertain an audience wanting to listen and see the tenor perform in concert. The success of such shows was practically guaranteed. In my experience, this phenomenon is the same everywhere – Canada, Poland, Germany and Ukraine.
Continue reading: MusicNotes on Opera Tenors
May 21, 2011
Young Opera Singers with Conductor Myron Yusypovych
It’s become the newest craze: 10 yr old, 12 yr old, 14 yr old opera singers. YouTube is bursting with videos made of young opera singers at various vocal competitions performing arias and songs from well-known operas.
But, how old were famous opera singers when they made their operatic debuts?
Shirley Verrett (May 31, 1931 – November 5, 2010), a black opera singer, was 27 years old
Luciano Pavarotti (October 12, 1935 – September 6, 2007), an Italian opera tenor, was 26 years old
Joan Sutherland (November 7, 1926 – October 10, 2010), the Australian dramatic coloratura soprano, was 25 years old
Modest Menzinsky (April 29, 1875 – December 11, 1935), a famous European tenor, was 26 years old
Ira Malaniuk (January 29, 1919 – February 29, 2009), an Austrian and Ukrainian mezzo-soprano, was 26 years old.
Continue reading about how old, young opera singers really are?
May 6, 2011
Baroque Period Music Concert
Visit the Johann Georg Pinzel Museum and view the art of the baroque period.
Go to St. George's Cathedral or the Church of the Blessed Sacrament (Dominican Church and Monastery) and get a sense of baroque architecture…
Come to the Lviv Philharmonia for a baroque period music concert….
«During the baroque period, the audience sat on stools or benches. Chairs, as we know them today, were not invented until the late baroque period. Of course, audiences today, as compared to our ancestors of yesterday, can sit comfortably on the new seats at the Lviv Philharmonia and enjoy our concert of baroque period composers and music», said conductor Myron Yusypovych.
April 21, 2011
Classical Music Composers
While reviewing some of my video clips from past concerts, I stumbled onto a performance recording of the Overture to Ruslan and Ludmila and the orchestral suite Waltz Fantasy by Mikhail Glinka.
Once again, as numerous times in the past, the thought came to me: How unaffected is Glinka’s genius and yet how clear and profound. He is able to portray so much using a modest and traditional orchestra!
While contemplating such thoughts, I recalled one well known quote by the composer of Ruslan and Ludmila in reference to Joseph Haydn’s music “And I didn’t chop off this hand, which has taken upon itself to write music after such great creations!”
Continue reading Notes on Classical Music Composers and view a music videoclip.
April 13, 2011
Classical Sacred Music
During the Season of Lent, the well known liturgical hymn «A Mother's Sorrow» (Stradalna maty) is sung in our churches.
The mournful Mother stood by the cross,
Weeping, mourning through her tears:
«O my dear Son, for what sin, what wrongdoing
Do you suffer such agony
On the cross?»
«Interestingly, the musical composition Stabat Mater, by G.Pergolesi is not as well known to the public-at-large in Ukraine. This, in spite of the fact that during the 18th century, this piece was a «bestseller» and was regularly performed in the western world. It is worth noting that both the well-known Ukrainian hymn (Stradalna maty) and the sacred work (Stabat Mater) are taken from a literary piece popular during the Middle Ages. Who wrote the original Latin words is under dispute» – explained Myron Yusypovych.
April 11, 2011
The profession of conductor, as compared to that of instrumentalist or singer, is a relatively new phenomenon. About 200 years ago, no one would have dreamed of standing in front of the musicians holding a baton over their heads.
To my mind, we can compare the education and training of young conductors, as well as the profession of the conductor as a whole, to an iceberg. Knowing how to «wave the arms», the specific technique of conducting, is only the surface part. Real conducting is hidden beneath the surface.
The profession of conductor entails the highest skills of performance both in technique and spirit, as well as, the most opportunity for complete and total quackery.
Continue reading: Classical MusicNotes on Young Conductor Training
April 4, 2011
Famous Italian Operas
Many of us, when we hear the word “opera”, instantly think of famous Italian operas.
Where did opera originate? In Italy.
Who wrote the first opera? An Italian.
Who invented opera? The Italians.
Who started opera? The Italians.
What do the names Amilcare, Giuseppe, Gioachino, Gaetano, Giacomo, Pietro, Ruggero, Vincenzo have in common?
Continue reading about the fascinating world of famous Italian operas
March 29, 2011
Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky would have been 170 years old on May 7, 2010.
Curiously, this purely Russian form of addressing someone by their name, patronymic and surname is applied to this particular composer mostly in the West. Alexander Borodin, Sergei Rachmaninoff or Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov are known by their names and surnames. And yet, there is an insistence on using Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky. Obviously, this tendency comes from a desire to emphasize the Russian tradition of addressing someone.
And so, I, once again, throught about the Ukrainian roots of this musical genius and composer.
Although, I am interested in the specific details of the composer's ethnicity, I am more interested in understanding the phenomenon of P.Tchaikovsky and his relationship with the Russian music tradition. After all, Tchaikovsky's music is different from the music of other Russian composers. So, what, if any, is the relationship?
Continue reading: Classical MusicNotes on Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
March 21, 2011
Female Opera Singers Ira Malaniuk, Lisa della Casa
Mezzo soprano Ira Malaniuk (1919 – 2009) was:
- awarded the prestigious Kammersängerin award twice
- performed as resident soloist in Zurich, Bayreuth, Munich and Vienna
- toured North America, South America and Australia.
Malaniuk performed with the Swiss soprano Lisa della Casa:
- in the world premiere performance of Die Schwarze Spinne (The Black Spider) Zurich Opera House (Stadttheater) – composer Willy Burkhard, librettist Robert Faesi in 1949
- at the season premiere, opera theatre in Zurich in Erwin und Elmire – composer Othmar Schoeck in 1949-1950
- at the innaugural orchestra concert, Salzburger Festspiele under the musical direction of Bruno Walter in 1956.
According to her personal autobiographical calculations, during her opera career Ira Malaniuk performed:
- 270 times as a soloist at the Volksoper Wien
- 212 times as a soloist at the Vienna State Opera (Wiener Staatsoper).
Click to listen to the voice and to read about Ira Malaniuk – a great among female opera singers.
March 17, 2011
Who and where can best perform the opera Norma by Vincenzo Bellini?
Even taking into account contemporary processes of cultural inclusion, integration and globalisation, performing the works of Italian composers remains a priority for Italian opera houses and performers, who focus on the traditions of bel canto by Bellini, Donizetti and Rossini…
Granted, perfoming Bellini operas is not the exclusive right of Milan. Neither are any of the other national composers the sole prerogative of their national state. Sydney, Toronto, Moscow and, of course, Kyiv have an obligation to their audiences to provide a variety. But, is it really necessary to grant the highest Ukrainian state award in the field of culture, the National Taras Shevchenko Award for a production of Bellini's opera Norma?
March 13, 2011
Young Opera Singers
15 young opera artists (13 singers and 2 conductors) will perform a unique concert program at the Lviv Opera House on Friday, March 18, 2011 at 6:00pm. The evening's artistic direction is in the hands of the experienced conductor, Myron Yusypovych.
«Famous opera houses around the world, such as the Metropolitan Opera and the Canadian Opera Company in Toronto, have special programs that nurture, stimulate and engage young performers. Ukraine has some incredible voices. If we want opera in Ukraine to develop and grow, it is imperative that we create a variety of opportunities for audiences to get to know and love our talented young people» – said Myron Yusypovych.
13 young opera singers will participate in the concert: sopranos Tetiana Olenych, Lyubov Kachala and Veronika Kolomishcheva; mezzosopranos Marfa Shumkova, Yana Voytyuk and Lyubov Dika; tenor Vasyl Sadovskyy; baritones Yuriy Shevchuk, Ruslan Ferants, Peter Radejko, Andriy Benyuk and Vitaliy Zahorbenskyy, bass Ihor Nazarov. Additionally, Andriy Savka, an experienced tenor has agreed to help out.
The first part of the concert will be conducted by young conductors Oleksandr Slobodyan and Roland Marchuk. In the second half, Maestro Myron Yusypovych will be on the conductor's podium.
«For the Lviv audience, this is a unique opportunity to hear and experience 14 different opera singers over the course of 2 hours. Everything will be staged according to the traditions of the house of opera – full orchestra, lights, costumes» – explained Myron Yusypovych and invited everyone to the concert.
March 13, 2011
Enchanted Evening in Lancut
On Saturday, at 6:00pm, there was a concert in the Lancut Cultural Centre. Lviv Opera and Lviv Philharmonia soloists and musicians performed An Enchanted Evening from Lviv.
This evening, well-known artists of the Lviv Opera and Lviv Philharmonia performed before the Lancut audience: the orchestra under the direction of Myron Jusypowicz and opera singers – Natalia Dytiuk, Piotr Radejko and Vasyl Sadovski.
The evening included works by famous composers Johann Strauss, Giovanni Battista Pergolesi, Franz Lehar. The audience had the opportunity to listen to the arias «A Lively Spirit» (Als flotter Geist) and «Lips Stay Silent» (Lippen schweigen). Also included were songs from the popular Lviv repertoire were included. The audience reacted enthusiatically to Hej Sokoly (O, Falcons!), a favourite and widely appreciated song on both sides of the Polish-Ukrainian border. The commentary, that accompanied the pieces, added considerably to the audience's music appreciation.
«It was an absolutely wonderful evening. I feel uplifted and I'm sure this feeling will stay with me for a long time,» – commented a member of that evening's audience.
Lancut partook in a cultural experience today. During the 2 hour concert, the audience had the opportunity to immerse itself in the world of opera and operetta, to listen to the sound of this extraordinary music. For the audience that filled the hall, An Enchanted Evening from Lviv became an opportunity, albeit for a short time, to disengage from daily cares and blissfully float along with the instrumental melodies.
Wiadomości 24.pl Gabriela Blajer
Click to view a videoclip and report from Polish TV of the concert in Lancut, Poland.
Myron Jusypowicz Performs Opera and Classical Music in Poland
March 11, 2011
Job of the Opera Prompter
For the past 50 years, it has become traditional in our opera theatre that the job of the prompter is a jump-off point for future conductors. It is good for a conductor to spend time in the promoter's box. This is excellent experience. Personally, I spent 4 years there while a student at the Conservatory…
The job of the prompter in an opera theatre involves not just sitting and prompting. If we compare the opera singer to a dramatic actor, then in an opera the singer finds himself in stressful situations much more frequently. A dramatic actor has more freedom since he or she is not bound by the music. An actor can pause, stop, stretch out or speed up the text. In an opera, on the other hand, everything depends on the score. The prompter guides the entry and the words for the opera singer, allowing the singer the freedom to concentrate on portraying the character….
The timbre of the prompt has to be between a whisper and a regular voice. Interestingly, on some old recordings of Italian productions at LaScala, the work of the prompter is very audible. Indeed, as a conductor standing on the conductor's podium, I can hear who is working in the prompter's shell.…
When I worked in the prompter's box, I felt like a flight dispatcher. For, when an an extreme situation occurs on stage, a good prompter can save the entire performance…
Valeriya Radziyevska, Krajina (The Nation)
Opera Characteristics. What is The Opera?
March 10, 2011
Yusypovych Sells Out
…Myron Yusypovych brought in a sold-out crowd for the Tenors BEL'CANTO concert…
Vasyl Ponayda, Roman Trokymuk, Taras Hloba and Roman Antonyuk performed…
Under the direction of conductor Yusypovych, the orchestra performed the J.Strauss Tritsch-Tratsch Polka absolutely brilliantly and the audience was exhuberant.
«It is thrilling to be able to conduct such concerts and to showcase Lviv talent. And most importantly, the Lviv audience appreciates it», – said Myron Yusypovych.
U Lvovi (ulvovi.com)
February 28, 2011
У Львові гармонія сфер
The Ukrainian conductor, Myron Yusypovych, has produced an art project, Spheres of Harmony, on the stage of the Lviv National Solomiya Kruszelnicka Opera and Ballet Theatre. The artistic vision of this opera and symphony conductor is to present classical music to people who believe that, because they are not sufficiently musically educated, they don't understand opera or symphonies and, as a result, don't make it a point to frequent the theatre. The production is a unique world premiere of musical-art theatre – the visual in sound. A grand spectacle is created through the combination of three artistic spheres: music, art and light.….
Larysa Marchuk, Viche – A Journal of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine
Lviv Cultural Events' Audit (December 2010 – January 2011)
Join Us at the lviv Opera House for Spheres of Harmony
A Christmas Gift of Harmony For the People of Lviv
February 27, 2011
Serenade Music of Spring will be presented on February 27 in Lviv. This concert will take place at the Lviv Oblast Philharmonia. The Chamber Orchestra Lviv Virtuosos will perform. Myron Yusypovych will conduct. The concert program includes pieces by Franz Xaver Wolfgang Mozart, Antonin Leopold Dvorak and Valentin Silvestrov. The Serenade Music of Spring concert will begin at 6:00pm.
February 21, 2011
On the occasion of «International Mother Language Day», Myron Yusypovych participated in a National Poetry Forum «Ukrainian Mother Language», which took place in Lviv, Ukraine on February 21, 2011. About 70 community activists from different cities of Ukraine travelled to Lviv for the event.
For 6 hours, participants could listen to poetry and literary works, singing and music by authors, poets and musicians from all of Ukraine in the Great Hall at Lviv City Hall.Myron Yusypovych read his poems that have been published in two anthologies: Why Bother Picking up a Violin? and It's Not Just Love…
The organizors posted the presentations on YouTube. Myron Yusypovych can be seen at the 3:31 mark.
Click to view a videoclip of Myron Yusypovych reading his poems YouTube.
February 9, 2011
Lviv Cultural Events
An absolutely brilliant idea where one project combines music, scenic design and lights. Our respects to Myron Yusypovych, idea creator! Of all the «spheres», the most harmonically joined were music and Yevhen Lysyk's scenic designs)… On the whole, a rare project that is extremely interesting and worth persuing, hopefully making it into a yearly tradition. This would allow for a more complete performance, as well as a wonderful opportunity to see the unique canvases of a wonderful theatre artist, to listen to beautiful music and to enjoy the play of lights. In short, to become immersed in the «harmony of the spheres».
Centre for Cultural Management
/Natalka Kosmolinska, Bozhena Horodnytska, Taras Fedorchak, Kateryna Slipchenko, Lida Melnyk/
Join Us at the Lviv Opera House for Spheres of Harmony
Spheres of Harmony – Music and Art
The World Needs a Museum to House Yevhen Lysyk's Masterpieces
February 4, 2011
A fireworks concert on an open air stage is very popular with audiences during the summer months of July and August.
The most popular classical music pieces for a fireworks display are:
Music for the Royal Fireworks by Georg Frideric Handel
The Stars and Stripes Forever by John Philip Sousa
The 1812 Overture by Piotr Tchaikovsky
Ride of the Valkyries by Richard Wagner
Polovetsian Dances by Alexander Borodin
The first recorded performance of fireworks and music was in the 18th century. It was an expensive undertaking.
Today, purchasing fireworks is easy. And so, local festivals and celebrations often include fireworks at the end or finale of free outdoor concerts.
Click to view a music videoclip of a fireworks concert finale at an open air music event.
January 4, 2011
Opera in Ukraine
Opera and classical music are part of the popular culture in Ukraine.
The opera Zaporozhian Cossack Beyond the Danube by the Ukrainian opera composer Semen Hulak-Artemovsky (1813 – 1873) is considered to be the first opera with a Ukrainian language libretto.
One of the most famous and popular parts of the opera, enjoyed by audiences in Ukraine, is the duet between the wife-husband duo of Odarka – mezzosoprano and Karas – bass.
Click to view a music videoclip of an open-air concert performance of this opera duet in Ukraine.
December 24, 2010
Gifts for Lviv House of Opera
…Borys Viktorovych (Kolesnikov) visited Lviv with a new gift. This time, a set of eleven wind, brass and percussion instruments manufactured by some of the leading musical instrument producers of the world was presented to the S.Kryshelnytska Lviv National House of Opera and Ballet.
The value of the instruments is over 800 thousand hryvnias (approx. $100 000 USD). The gift includes a bass-clarinet, a trumpet, a French horn, copper tympani (an instrument similar to four Kozak tulumbas), orchestral bells, marimba, a gong etc. The theatre musicians are indeed pleased. It seems that many of these essential instruments were not available in the orchestra and needed to be loaned for performances.
And so, the official moment of handing over the instruments arrives. In the audience, we see most, if not all, of the opera's personnel, journalists and seated in the main box – the head of the Lviv Regional Administration – Mykhailo Tsymbaliuk and Lviv City Mayor – Andrii Sadovyy. On stage, we have the Lviv Opera House orchestra under the direction of Myron Yusypovych and the event's two «stars» - Borys Kolesnikov and Tadej Eder. The instruments are displayed in the forefront…
View a short music video of the event, including the full force of the gong and a fanfare performance conducted by Myron Yusypovych.
December 16, 2010
Spheres of Harmony in Lviv
Spheres of Harmony is a unique production, a world premiere, of musical art theatre – the visual in sound.
In antiquity, Aristotle claimed that the movement of the heavenly spheres, in addition to being harmonically ordered and logical, produced a harmonic tone and the «music of the spheres» created a virtual harmony of sound.
The tree of life represents another standard of harmony from time immemorial. In Ukrainian culture, our great-great-great-grandmothers recreated the tree of life on embroidered cloths. Here, we see the mathematical harmony of the prehistorica tree of life's 11 spheres.
Spheres of Harmony is a musical production from the repertoire of some of the world's great classical composers: Wagner, Khachaturian, Lyatoshynsky, Berlioz, Prokofiev, Shostakovich, Barber, Respighi.
Spheres of Harmony is a visual production of unique Lviv art, seen through the eyes of scenic designer Yevhen Lysyk and his students, Tadej Ryndzak and Mykhajlo Ryndzak.
Spheres of Harmony is a philosophical production that compels us to reexamine our own personal life path through the prism of the tree of life: the coming, bacchanalia, true love, the pendulum of life, vanity's march, darkness, invasion and catastrophy, repentance and prayer, farewell, a dream land, the way.
On December 24 and 25, 2010, one third of the earth's population will be celebrating the coming of the Saviour. As the calm of the Christmas night settles upon us, those who come to the Lviv Opera House will have a unique opportunity to join with the global Christian family.
For everything begins with «The Coming» of the Christ Child, or the saviour-warrior as portrayed by Lohengrin, or each of us and ends with «The Way» that leads to eternal life.
«Music, art and light are born of the same spiritual seed and together forge our Spheres of Harmony» - says Myron Yusypovych, project creator.
Listen to «The Coming» - the Introduction to the opera Lohengrin by Richard Wagner, conducted by Myron Yusypovych.
A Christmas Gift of Harmony For the People of Lviv
Spheres of Harmony – Music and Art
The World Needs a Museum to House Yevhen Lysyk's Masterpieces
December 7, 2010
A Christmas Gift of Harmony in Lviv
The circumstances of history can be strange.
According to Christian tradition, Jesus Christ, the Saviour, was born during the longest night of the year, at the time of the winter solstice.
Most Christians around the world will celebrate Christmas on December 24 and 25. On the other hand, about 10% of Christians, including many Ukrainians, will welcome the newly-born Christ-child into their homes on January 6 and 7.
For the citizens of Lviv, who consider themselves Europeans and citizens of the world, this disharmony is rather discomforting. After all, although Lvivites love and take pride in their uniqueness and individuality, they don't want to be simply bystanders to world events.
And so, on the nights, when one third of the world's population (2 billion Christians) will be marking the birth of Christ, Myron Yusypovych has planned a unique gift for the citizens of Lviv.
On December 24 and 25, 2010, as the peace of Christmas descends upon the Earth, the citizens of Lviv will have the opportunity to join in spiritual harmony with the Christian family around the world, through a unique experience of music, art and light.
Why? Because it's Christmas time – a time of rebirth, gifts, surprises and joy.
Come join us!
December 1, 2010
Clown in Opera Pagliacci
The opera Pagliacci is an excellent opera to see, if you are a beginner to the world of opera. As an opera it is short, has a swiftly moving plot within a plot and a typical operatic death scene.
Pagliacci was written by Italian composer Ruggero Leoncavallo. It is sometimes referred to as the famous Italian opera about clowns.
The opera Pagliacci has several clowns:
- the male clowns Canio, Tonio, Silvio and
- the female clown Nedda.
Click to find out more about the opera Pagliacci
Tonio, the Fool – Clown in the Opera Pagliacci
Nedda in Pagliacci Must Look the Part
November 26, 2010
What is The Opera?
Opera is one of the most loved and enduring forms of art.
An opera is a dramatic work that combines music, literature, visual art, dance. In today’s opera productions, what the opera audience sees and hears is often enhanced by technology (lights, sound effects, films).
The following 15 characteristics and features expand on the definition of opera and help us understand this art called – opera.
- Music is the main component of an opera
- Drama in an opera comes through the music
- Operas are composed by opera composers
- A composer score is used by the opera’s music conductor
- Opera libretti are the script
- An orchestra provides the instrumental music
- Opera singers sing in an opera
- A choir performs in an opera
- Ballet dancers perform in an opera
- Supernumeraries are often part of an opera performance
- Operas are usually performed in a house of opera
- Opera is a theatrical production
- An opera performance must have an audience
- Surtitles provide a translation of the opera libretto
- An opera conductor is responsible during an opera performance
Continue reading for more details on What is the opera?
November 8, 2010
Famous Opera Singer Maria Stefyuk
It used to be that famous opera singers would never consider singing on an open-air stage. Luciano Pavarotti, Placido Domingo and Jose Carreras (better known as The Three Tenors) changed all that with their open air concert on the eve of the 1990 Soccer (FIFA) World Cup’s first match.
Since that time, many outdoor concerts of opera and classical music have taken place all over the world and audiences have loved them.
In Western Ukraine, classical music open air concerts have been recently revived due to the efforts of Myron Yusypovych.
Click to view a music videoclip of Mariya Stefyuk, a famous opera singer, performing at an open air concert.
Click to find out more about Maria Stefyuk and Goskontsert, the agency that had total and complete control over artists’ lives in the Soviet Union.
November 5, 2010
Myron Yusypovych – EURO 2012
Conductor Myron Yusypovych has been included in the advertising videoclip Switch on Ukraine. The music videoclip will be broadcast on major European TV channels (Euronews, Eurosport, BBC) as part of Ukraine's promotional campaign for EURO-2012. The official presentation of the videoclip took place in Kyiv on November 4, 2010.
The videoclip was created by Ukrainian director Yulian Ulybin and German cameraman Torsten Lippstock. During their stay in Lviv, they filmed footage at the S.Krushelnytska National Opera and Ballet Teatre.
The videoclip is 90 second long. Myron Yusypovych can be see at the 70th second mark.
Click to view the videoclip on YouTube
November 1, 2010
Baroque Music and Alpha Waves
On Thursday, November 4… you can listen to The Best of the Baroque …
«…each and every one of us needs to stimulate our brains to produce alpha brainwaves (i.e. 8 – 14 hertz, or cycles per second). In this state, our ability to relax, renew and rejuvenate is heightened. Interestingly, one of the best ways to stimulate our brains to produce alpha waves is by listening to Baroque music», explains conductor and music director Myron Yusypovych, who encourages everyone to come out, listen to music and stimulate the production of alpha brainwaves in order to renew and rejuvenate ourselves.
October 15, 2010
Award of Merit
Myron Yusypovych was recognized with an Award of Merit by the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine.
A diploma and commemorative medal were presented by the Ukrainian Minister of Culture and Tourism, Mykhaylo Kulynyak on October 15, 2010. The ceremony took place at the S.Krushelnytska National Theatre of Opera and Ballet in Lviv, Ukraine during celebrations dedicated to the 110th Anniversary of the Opera House.
The Award of Merit was awarded for «high levels of professional skill, many years of dedicated work and significant personal contributions to the development of a national culture».
The Award of Merit is registered under #20839 and signed by the Prime Minister of Ukraine.
October 13, 2010
Tonio in the opera Pagliacci
Tonio is one of the clowns in the opera Pagliacci.
- The villagers make fun of him.
- Canio, his boss, slaps him.
- Nedda, the boss’s wife, ignores him.
Frustrated, Tonio is set on revenge.
Click to view an opera video clip of Nedda and Tonio arguing.
Click to read opera conductor Myron Yusypovych’s thoughts on the character of Tonio from the opera Pagliacci.
Continue reading: Nedda in Pagliacci Must Look the Part
September 22, 2010
Lysyk Scenography Museum Needed
A round table discussion, «Yevhen Lysyk: A Contemporary Review of the Artist's Legacy», took place on September 21 to mark the occasion of, what would have been, the Maestro's 80th birthday.
… the famous opera and symphony conductor, Myron Yusypovych, took part in the discussion – «… the name and legacy of Yevhen Lysyk is part of Lviv's heritage. It is unique. He laid the foundation for an atypical form of drama, where visual drama and musical drama synergize. Subconsciously, he discovered a new form of theatre – the visual in sound or sound visualization. Indeed, this can be a separate genre: combining music, lights and imagery … I would like to suggest that we take several concrete steps toward creating such a vision and sound theatre, a theatre dedicated to the legacy of Yevhen Lysyk…» said Myron Yusypovych, adding that the General Director of the Lviv Opera has already planned to commemorate the 80th anniversary of Yevhen Lysyk with a concert combining music performed by the orchestra and the Maestro's scenography.
Another realistic was proposed by the well known Lviv art researcher, Nataliya Kosmolinska, who suggested that a DVD with production designs by Lysyk and recordings of orchestral music under the direction of Myron Yusypovych be released…
September 6, 2010
Open Air Concerts in Lviv, Ukraine
Why attend an open air music concert that features classical and opera music?
Click here for six good reasons to be a part of summer outdoor music concerts.
Open Air Concerts in Lviv Have Become a Popular Tradition
Gala Open Air Symphony Concert in Ivano-Frankivsk
June 19, 2010
Lviv Opera Soloists in Lancut
The last major event of this year’s Lancut City Days (June 11 – 13) was an open air concert by the soloists and orchestra of the Solomiya Krushelnytska National Opera and Ballet Theatre from Lviv in the program „Charming Operettas“ under the musical direction of Myron Yusypovych ( Meron Jusypowicz )…
An interesting and unexpected moment in the program was, when one of the tenors invited the audience to join him in singing the song „O mój rozmarynie“…
This charming and magical concert was a large scale event and the biggest attraction during Lancut City Days. By drawing a huge crowd, the concert reaffirmed how much we crave this kind of art and the significance of such events for the development of a sense of cultural community while developing artistic and cultural tastes.
All that remains, is to recommend that such events take place more often and that great artists be hosted in Lancut.
Anna Błachowicz-Wolny, Korespondent 24
Interesting facts: „O mój rozmarynie“ (also known as „Rozmaryn“) is a popular Polish song from the World War I period.
Joseph Haydn Symphony №96 in Olsztyn, Poland
Myron Jusypowicz Performs Opera and Classical Music in Poland
May 28, 2010
Not Just Love Poems
The newly released CD is the result of the creative collaboration between Myron Yusypovych and K&K Philharmoniker, an orchestra created in 2002 by the Austrian company DaCapo Musikmarketing. (Mr. Yusypovych worked with them until 2007.) The orchestra members were chosen by audition from among the best musicians in Ukraine. For many years, four audio disks recorded by this orchestra have been selling in Germany, Austria, Switzerland. Up to now, no one had the rights to release the disks in Ukraine. Myron Yusypovych and his wife Oksana, obtained these rights…
As to his desire, in addition to wielding the conductor's baton, to put pen to paper, Mr. Yusypovych said: There were two things that have stimulated me to write poetry – my youngest daughter's drawings and music.
Opera Conductor Releases His Second Anthology of Poems
A Symphony of Poetry by Myron Yusypovych
«Why Bother Picking up a Violin?»
May 25, 2010
Conductor Releases Anthology of Poems
Yesterday evening, there was a double presentation of an opera CD and anthology of poems by Myron Yusypovych at the Lviv “Dzyga” Art and Cultural Center in Lviv. Yurij Kucheryavyj moderated the evening…
The music conductor feels that for an artist (and a composer in particular) the impetus for creating any work of intrinsic artistic value is pathos. “They all agonized – Tchaikovsky, Schubert, Chopin, Glinka, Wagner – each in his own way, due to something deeply personal. As a result, we have enlightened music, a catharsis of love. For my poetry, music is a strong stimulus”, admitted Myron Yusypovych, whose new anthology of poems includes poetic intermezzo based on operatic themes he has conducted.
A Symphony of Poetry by Myron Yusypovych
“Why Bother Picking up a Violin?”
Best Books Contest at the 16th Book Forum
May 20, 2010
Recording of Classical Overtures
The new recording produced personally by the conductor Myron Yusypovych includes classical music by Richard Wagner, Giuseppe Verdi, Giacomo Puccini, Georges Bizet, Ruggero Leoncavallo, Pyotr Tchaikovsky, Mikhail Glinka, Julij Mejtus and Mykola Lysenko. Ivan Ohar did the remastering …
For the most part, Myron Yusypovych is a prominent celebrity in Lviv artistic circles. He sells out his concerts, leads an active creative life and responds to various cultural events – from museum expositions to new theatre productions. In every new event, he absolutely rejects all evidence of bad taste, unprofessional outcomes, lack of consistency and polish. In short, every time he expresses his amazement of how, in our reality, there can coexist complete apathy, junk, low quality and real creative inspiration and original creations of others, evaluates them not according to narrow-minded attributes, but accountable standards of excellence.
May 15, 2010
Famous Tenor Modest Menzinsky
Modest Menzinsky (1875 – 1935) was a famous male opera singer, who performed all over Europe. His tenor voice was ideally suited for the full range of operas by Wagner and Menzinsky sang all of them. During his time on stage as a singer, Modest Menzinsky performed every major male opera role in the great opera theatres across Europe. Press critics and the public of the 1920s and 1930s considered Modest Menzinsky to be a great opera singer.
Click to continue reading about Modest Menzinsky, a famous male opera singer
April 20, 2010
Ira Malaniuk Gala Concert 2010
A Gala-Concert is planned to commemorate the memory of the world famous opera singer, Ira Malaniuk, who was born in our city….
Conductor for the event is Myron Yusypovych.
Ira Malaniuk was born in Stanislaviv (now called Ivano-Frankivsk) on January 29, 1919 and passed away in Zirl, Austria on February 25, 2009… As a singer, she had an exceptional artistic gift – a voice of wide range, unusual timbre, strength and flexibility, which she handled using the highest techniques of performance. She completed her opera career at the age of 50. During her lifetime, she was recognized as a brilliant Wagnerian. Additionally, she achieved unprecedented popularity as a chamber singer. Malaniuk performed in concerts in many cities of Western Europe and on the North American continent (USA, Canada). In 1965, the Austrian government awarded her the Austrian Cross of Honour for Science and Art, First Class („Österreichischer Ehrenkreuz für Wissenschaft und Kunst Ersten Klasse“).
In Memory of a Famous Singer
Female Opera Singer, Ira Malaniuk, Honoured with a Gala Concert
March 10, 2010
Concert in Olsztyn, Poland
You are invited to the Olsztyn Philharmonia to attend a concert celebrating Artur Milian’s 35 years of artistic endeavors. Myron Jusypowicz from Lviv conducts.
December 3, 2009
Final Scene in Cavalleria Rusticana
For many opera buffs, Pietro Mascagni is not as well known as the titans of opera, such as, Wagner, Verdi, Puccini or the genius Mozart, Rossini…
And yet, the world opera treasury is richer for the presence of this exquisite pearl called Cavalleria Rusticana.
Did you know that Opera Houses around the world often add and delete creating their own unique versions of operas?
By clicking on the link below, you can read a synopsis of Cavalleria Rusticana, view the images and watch a video of the musical interlude “Intermezzo” as performed in repertoire at the Lviv Opera House in Lviv, Ukraine.
The storyline keeps everything very operatic (in the best meaning of the word): love, sincerity, grief, jealousy, deceit, volatility, stubbornness and vulgarity …
October 17, 2009
A Symphony of Poetry By Myron Yusypovych
Myron Yusypovych, a famous Lviv musician and conductor of the S. Krushelnytska National Opera and Ballet Theatre presented his first anthology of poems – «Why Bother Picking up a Violin?»…
… Myron Yusypovych introduced us to the secrets of the art of conducting, spoke about his orchestra tours throughout Europe…
The author explained the title of his anthology «Why Bother Picking up a Violin»: «Everyone of us should be masters of our profession… If you don't have what it takes to be a musician, you shouldn't pick up a violin.»
June 19, 2009
The Tsar's Bride is an anti-totalitarian, not an anti-Russian production, claims opera conductor, Myron Yusypovych
«I've lived with the idea of creating this production for a long time… To my mind, there is much in common with the totalitarian regimes of the 20th c. and those of the era of Oprichnina during Ivan the Terrible's time… Present-day totalitarianism (1917, 1937) draws its roots from that time. Oprichnina, as a phenomenon, gave birth to the Cheka, MVD… Although the characters of Ivan VI, Malyuta Skuratov are historical, this opera lends itself well to being produced as a reflection on the 20th c. … such abuse of power was evident during the time of Lenin, Dzerzhynsky, Stalin, Beria…
Malyuta Skuratov, who killed a bishop with his own hands gouging out his eyes and quartering him, who manipulated Ivan the Terrible, who attacked a boyar (noble) whom he had betrayed, took his wife, raped her and then hung her upside down on the door frame, is no different from those who committed atrocities in the 20th c. when people lived in constant fear of being forcibly removed from their homes in the middle of the night. At least, I don't see any differences. On the contrary, the wheel of history repeats itself.
I have been asked whether or not I see this opera as being anti-Russian. No, I don't. For me, it is anti-totalitarian…
My idea was to portray at least three periods on stage: first – 1917, the second act in a Moscow suburb in 1937…. and only the last act would be staged in the original period. For me, it is not the outward visual trappings that are important, but the content…
Totalitarism is capable of rebirth. I see this as a possiblity not only here, but also everywhere….» -- said, the production conductor of the Lviv Opera's The Tsar's Bride, Myron Yusypovych…