Sunday, August 19, 2012

James Levine: America's Maestro

This is a clip of James Levine: America's Maestro; James Levine and New York's Metropolitan Opera go together like hand in glove, a relationship that dates to 1971.

Award-winning filmmaker Susan Froemke follows the Met Music Director during coaching sessions, rehearsals and performances at the world’s leading opera house over the course of the 2009-10 and 2010-11 seasons. James Levine: America’s Maestro features intimate scenes between the maestro and his longtime collaborator Plácido Domingo – from rehearsals in the 1970s to 2010 as they mount Verdi’s Simon Boccanegra. Witness Levine leading intense rehearsals with the MET Orchestra as they prepare for their first performance of Beethoven’s 5th Symphony at Carnegie Hall, and poignant coaching sessions with aspiring young singers from the Lindemann Young Artist Development Program (LYADP), including segments from this year’s The Bartered Bride, LYADP’s first collaboration with The Juilliard School. Interviews include Domingo, principal musicians from the MET Orchestra, LYADP artists, former Met General Manager Bruce Crawford (1985-1989), Met Artistic Administrator Jonathan Friend, and the maestro himself.
Since May 2011, James Levine, 69, has been on leave as music director of the Metropolitan Opera, necessitated by health problems, chiefly related to his his back and more recently a “severe injury to the spinal cord”; he is due to return before the fall of 2013. Like many other music fans, I wish him a full and speedy recovery and look forward to his place at the podium; his return, no doubt, will be greatly appreciated.