Rossini’s ‘Barber of Seville’ with comedic twist comes to Opera San Jose

By Khalida Sarwari When ‘The Barber of Seville’ premiered at Rome’s Teatro Argentina in 1816, it was met with the kind of response no composer wants to see, at least none on the caliber of Gioachino Rossini. His biographer, Richard Osborne, recounts audiences hissing and jeering throughout the opera that late February evening. Fortunately, theater-goers eventually wised up and made both the opera and its composer a worldwide success. In commemoration of the comic opera’s Read More …

San Jose is alive with ‘The Sound of Music’

By Khalida Sarwari It will be San Jose’s Center for the Performing Arts, not so much the hills, that will be alive with the sound of music this month when a new production of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s beloved musical comes to town. Broadway San Jose’s production opens Nov. 8. Directed by three-time Tony Award-winner Jack O’Brien, whose credits include “Hairspray,” “The Full Monty” and “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels,” the national touring production isn’t likely to be “your mother’s Read More …

Nothing ‘dhol’ about Discovery Museum’s Diwali Festival

By Khalida Sarwari The faces at the Children’s Discovery Museum’s Diwali Festival change year after year, but one is turning into a mainstay: that of 14-year-old Zoraver Dhillon. He was the one beating a dhol, the Indian double-headed drum, to start the ceremonies last year, and you can bet he’ll be back to do it again this year. It’s a simple act, but for Zoraver, the instrument has come to symbolize the vehicle through which Read More …

‘Phantom of the Opera’ comes to Center for the Performing Arts on Sept. 15

By Khalida Sarwari In London, it turned 30 years old this year and in New York, it’s just a few years shy of turning 30. Some would argue a small facelift was in order for “Phantom of the Opera,” a perennial favorite of theater aficionados the world over since its 1986 stage premiere in London’s West End theatre. And with Laurence Connor at the helm, that’s what it received. While fans of the original production Read More …