Re: ‘Butterfly’ falls short of the original

To the Editor,

I am writing to you in response to the review of Madame Butterfly in the April 7th issue. I found the reviewer to be extremely unprofessional and uneducated about the medium she was reviewing. First of all, the Judy Bailey theater was not designed to house a full pit orchestra and not only is it not the fault of the department, but it is irrelevant to complain about the harpist being set off stage. The harpist is an extremely professional musician, and I assure you, Ms. White was over-exaggerating the “distracting behavior” of the harpist if not fabricating it all together. Secondly, if she had researched the opera at all she would have realized that there were not five to six minutes of “dead air.” If she had been paying attention to the story she would have realized that the off stage singing was not “as painful and boring as watching paint dry,” but actually quite moving when put in context with the story.

I am appalled that the paper would let someone who seemingly had very little knowledge about the performance she was viewing to write such a review saying, “toward the end watching it became a constant act of forgiveness.” Finally, I can’t believe a reviewer would insert a section commenting on whom she would have cast in the roles. This is absolutely ridiculous. If she is so knowledgeable about opera then maybe she should come over and teach! Only she shows her true lack of knowledge when she mentions picking Brian Myer (a baritone) as Pinkerton (a tenor part) and Latoya Lain, (a mezzo-soprano) as Butterfly (a soprano’s role). In the future, please have your writers do a little research and obtain some background knowledge about what they review before they attack what they do not understand. My congratulations to the cast of Madame Butterfly on what truly was a great production.

– Sara Geiger
Master’s Student in Music

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