Who is Sylvia?
On Friday night, I went to "Songspiel," a show assembled from Kurt Weill songs, starring the soprano Sylvia McNair as a homeless woman on the eve of Hurricane Katrina. This kind of unlikely set-up is typical of American Opera Theater, the small group that assembled the show (it had its premiere in Baltimore in November), and since I recently touted the "do less with more" approach, it would be downright ungracious of me not to salute AOT's work. "Songspiel" is filled with interesting ideas, some of which work better than others; it was certainly gutsy of McNair, a Grammy winner and former Met star, to take on a challenging project with a small company; and while I had some reservations, I wasn't by any means sorry I saw it. My full review will run on Monday or Tuesday; before that, there are two more performances, on Saturday night at 8 and Sunday afternoon at 2.
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