Martina Serafin (Marschallin) and Sophie Koch (Octavian) in Der Rosenkavalier


Sarah Connolly sings “E vivo ancora…Scherza infida” from Ariodante by Handel

Hi! So I really want to get into opera more, but trying to is kind of overwhelming because it's like wow what do I listen to which version should I choose what is happening I don't know what I'm doing. So basically I was wondering if you have any advice for getting into it, suggestions, anything really. Thank you :)


Okay so first of all I’m sorry for taking so long to reply I’m terrible I know

Second, I know exactly what it feels like, bless <3 And I can honestly say: just throw yourself into it. When I was discovering opera (or rather, re-discovering but anyway), I literally just listened to everything that I came across and when a piece of a performer caught my attention I dug up everything about that, and so on. It’s FUN. The amazing fyeahoperasingers blog was a lot of help with that. (Or, if you will excuse a bit of shameless self-promotion, my blog might be good for that as well.)

Also, quite obvious, but when you are doing the searching, a shitload of things are up on Spotify and YT, ranging from “I didn’t even know this recording existed” to “HD rip of the opera that was broadcasted two days ago on Mezzo so you know, those are really good places to dick around on for opera.

But okay, to the actual recommendations:

  • Mozart. All the Mozart. I don’t think you can ever go wrong with Mozart. Baby Mozart, teenager Mozart, "I’m gonna compose the best opera commissioned by a monarch ever" Mozart. René Jacobs’ recordings of Le nozze di Figaro and Die Zauberflöte are great, and the ROH productions of those two operas are also good places to begin with (you can watch the latter here). Don Giovanni, always and forever (Giulini’s recording and Guth’s production are also well worth seeking out. Or this).
  • A few classics (as in pretty much what standard rep is made up of): Il barbiere di Siviglia (not having the awesome Met one to link, here have Ponnelle’s equally great movie), La traviata, Fidelio, Carmen (the ROH prod, always and forever), Rigoletto, Onegin, La Cenerentola, Werther, Der Rosenkavalier. Also La boheme (no recommendations for this one as I’m neither terribly familiar with the opera nor planning on being so) and Tosca (again, ROH prod), if you’re into that kind of thing.
  • A few artist with really great recordings (this will probably be rather eclectic): Cecilia Bartoli, Joyce DiDonato, Peter Mattei, Daniel Behle, Lawrence Brownlee, Anne Sofie von Otter, Max Emanuel Cencic, Karina Gauvin, Jonas Kaufmann, Sandrine Piau, Susan Graham, Alexandrina Pendatchanska, Vesselina Kasarova, Anna Bonitatibus, Simon Keenlyside, Marie-Nicole Lemieux, Bejun Mehta, Sarah Connolly - might be a bit heavy on baroque but all these people have either very great performances of standard rep stuff (your usual package of Mozart/Handel/bel canto arias etc) or really great recordings of lesser-known works (the prime example would be Joyce DiDonato’s Drama Queens which has played a huge part in me getting into opera again sO).

Please everyone feel free to reblog it with own suggestions bc I’ve been sitting over this ask for two days and I still don’t feel like I could really help so. Opera fandom, assemble.

Someone asked me for my recommendations a loong time ago and they are here - since then I’ve gotten into Wagner and verismo and 20th century opera and zarzuela too. Might be useful for choosing aria CDs across voice types and there’s also a bit about finding CDs to download even though I mainly torrent now

(I would also recommend Alice Coote although she can be an acquired taste. and Juan Diego Florez, you can’t really avoid him if you’re getting into bel canto)


Cruelty is never enough with traitors! - from Carmen Giannattasio’s Facebook page



Jonas Kaufmann is still trash goodnight y’all



February 2nd, 1925 - July 17th, 2014 

Orpheus Complex: Jurowski Conducts Britten’s “Gay Requiem” in Moscow


“Vladimir Jurowski has once again demonstrated not only that he is a great conductor, but also that he refuses to conform. This sets him apart from other well-known Russian conductors and is so important now in our cold spring of 2014, in a country obsessed with searching out its enemies and in the grip of paranoid homophobia.”


Posting from beyond the grave




Asile héréditaire from Rossini’s Guillaume Tell, sung by Bryan Hymel.