April 25, 2020

Like so many things right now, this article is very different from the one I imagined I would be writing.

There are a few things in life that you know will be life-changing.  For all of us who have careers, retirement is a big one: it changes so much, it redefines you,...

April 19, 2020

Debuting on Friday, April 17, the VIRTUAL Chicago Lyric Opera Orchestra presented "Ride of the Valkyries"

Learn more about how we put this massive work together on Lyric Opera of Chicago's blog: Lyric Lately

The past month has been one of both loss and discovery for me. Since the beginning of last summer, in preparation for The Ring, I’ve been buying different oboe tube cane, stockpiling it, and experimenting with different oboe canes, gouges, and shaper tips, not to menti...

My husband (CSO horn player Dave Griffin) and I have lived in the same house in Oak Park for the past 24 years. During that time we’ve watched couples move onto our block, have families, and become empty nesters. Our particular block is a slice of suburban heaven with...

April 1, 2020

Check out this sweetheart, the newest and furriest member of the family for Katie Brauer (violin) and Mark Brandfonbrener (cello).

From Katie:
This is Maisie, our Golden Retriever puppy. By happy coincidence, she turned 8 weeks, old enough to come home with us, on March...

March 19, 2020

Regular musicians vote to receive less than full pay so the savings can pay extras and stage band musicians

As COVID-19 began sweeping across the United States, the Lyric Opera of Chicago management made the heartbreaking but necessary decision to cancel Wagner’s epic R...

December 27, 2019

The veil fabric from one of Sondra Radvanovsky’s Three Queens gowns, the pistol used to murder the Commendatore in Don Giovanni , the manacles used to restrain convict Joseph De Rocher in Dead Man Walking, a reed from Principal Clarinetist Charlene Zimmerman’s clarinet...

December 25, 2019

Banda members warming up in costume as gypsies and Spanish musicians

Have you ever wondered about those people playing musical instruments onstage at the opera? Or hear music coming from someplace other than the pit? Is it live or recorded? Are they really playing onsta...

December 23, 2019

Our group volunteer repack session at the Greater Chicago Food Depository this year included members of Lyric Opera’s administrative staff in addition to Lyric Opera Orchestra members, Chorus members, and Stage Managers. With hair and beard nets in place (because we're...

December 21, 2019

Kathleen Brauer (violin), Sister Helen Prejean (author of the book Dead Man Walking), and Mark Brandfonbrener (cello)

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