The Met Live: Elektra

The Met Live: Elektra

April, Fathom events – On Saturday, April 30, 2016, I had the privilege and pleasure of viewing a screening of a live performance of Richard Strauss’s inexorable one-act opera Elektra,*  the concluding operatic work in a year-long 10th anniversary celebration of “MET: LIVE in HD,” which had featured ten of the world’s greatest operas on giant cinema screens  throughout the US.

The production premiered at the  Aix-en-Provance Festival in France in 2013 and is considered to be a landmark contemporary staging of Strauss’s masterpiece.  It was produced by the renowned Patrice Chereau who tragically died shortly after the opening at the age of 68.  (A DVD is available of that production.)

The superb cast is headed by the smoldering intensity of soprano Nina Stemme in the title role whose Elektra is unremittingly consumed with a passion for vengeance upon her mother Klytamnestra, widow of Agamennon, performed masterfully by mezzo-soprano Waltraud Meier, and her lover, the cowardly Aegisth, convincingly portrayed by Burchard Ulrich, who have brutally murdered Elektra’s father Agamemnon.  Bass-baritone Eric Owens gives a strong rendering of her sympathetic brother Orest and Adrianne Pieczonka rounds out this incomparable cast as her weakling sister Chrysothemis who plays a perfect counterpoint with her banal domestic aspirations to her possessed sister Elektra who has dedicated her life to revenging her father’s murder, She realizes her goal in the end, but at the expense of her sanity.

Staged in an ominously sparse gray space with costumes to match, Chereau’s smoldering rendering of Strauss’s masterpiece is a production for the ages and opera at it’s best!

* * * Significantly, Sigmund Freud used Sophocles’ Elektra in his analysis of a daughter’s attachment to her father, and Oedipus Rex as the basis for his theory of a son’s attraction to his mother.  The so-called “Oedipus” and “Elektra” complexes continue to be very much a part of Freudian psychoanalysis.


by Lidia Paulinska and Hugh McMahon

The roadmap of AIMS with Steve Reynolds from Imagine Communications

The roadmap of AIMS with Steve Reynolds from Imagine Communications

April, NAB – Two years ago when we started to talk about IP and a question was – Can we do it? A year ago we were asking – Should we do it? This year a question is – How we do it? Steve Reynolds from Imagine Communications was describing the inception of AIMS, Alliance for IP Media Solutions, during our 1:1 interview. Reynolds added that in 2015 a lot of customers came to Imagine Communication with the concerns that they want to do IP but they were worried that is going to be a fragmentation in that segment of the industry. That was clearly need for AIMS.

NAB 2016 was a first year for AIMS, an industry consortium led by broadcast engineers, technologists, visionaries, vendors and business executives dedicated to an open-standards approach that moves broadcast and media companies to a virtualized, IP-based environment.

Reynolds explained that AIMS does not develop specs and standards. AIMS is trade of mind, it is marketing organization – he stated. The goal was to group the companies that primarily are working on broadcast technologies to get together and agree on the common set on the standards we want to use. The standards that are already developed. AIMS focus is on educating, evangelizing and spreading the adoption the technologies, but not to develop specs and standards. We here to help the adoption – he added. When the company joins AIMS it signs the adopter agreement, which says that they will promote this use of technologies, the AIMS roadmap, as you prefer to IP production.

More information about AIMS can be found here: