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Green Sneakers

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Read my review published today on the Web site of the Washington Post:

Charles T. Downey, Opera review: Ricky Ian Gordon’s ‘Green Sneakers’
Washington Post, April 4, 2011

available at Amazon
R. I. Gordon, Green Sneakers, J. Blumberg, Miami String Quartet
When John Adams’s “Nixon in China” finally came to the Metropolitan Opera earlier this year, Max Frankel, a reporter who won a Pulitzer Prize for his coverage of the historic presidential visit, asked, “So what does the resonance of reality do for art? And what does art owe to reality?”

These questions hung in the air over a meagerly attended performance of Ricky Ian Gordon’s one-act autobiographical opera “Green Sneakers” on Friday night, presented by UrbanArias. The venue, Arlington’s Artisphere, is having its own financial struggles: According to a recent report, its admission and ticket income is being estimated at an amount 75 percent lower than its planners expected.

“Green Sneakers” is really a staged song cycle, the composer’s poetic monologue about the death of his partner, Jeffrey Grossi, from AIDS in the 1990s. A lone singer takes the role of Gordon, ruminating on memories inspired by the eponymous footwear, a troublesome reminder of Grossi’s final months. [Continue reading]
Ricky Ian Gordon, Green Sneakers
Artisphere (Rosslyn, Va.)


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