Talk:Light Opera Works

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Old comment[edit]

This article needs some work, it seems like it has a slight POV and reads too much like a list. Half of the article is a listing of awards and corporations the theatre is related to. - Enzo Aquarius 23:00, 10 March 2006 (UTC)

Who wrote this?[edit]

I was a long time subscriber to this company. The article is a mess. Sweethearts, for example, is not a European operetta but an American one by Victor Herbert. "Straddling the border" between operetta and musical is a clumsy, unacademic description. Leonard Bernstein's Candide score reads, "A satirical operetta". It's not a musical at least in the form LOW did it. The company's contibutions to serious operetta production has largely been left out. -- T Fuller

By all means, improve it, giving reliable references WP:RS for your improvements, to help begin the process of properly referencing this article. -- Ssilvers 12:38, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

Link to the LOW "Retrospective" site[edit]

Please do not use this link, Tim. I am aware of several falsehoods in it, and the entire site has a serious axe to grind, being written by a person who was dismissed from the company. -- Ssilvers 12:38, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

I have looked at the low.info pages. It may have an axe to grind, but it still is covering (seemingly in detail i.e. the Pinafore entry already up) years of the company given no coverage on the "official" website. I have followed LOW closely since it's inception and it seems to me the creators of the low.info site are doing everyone a service by bringing to light the early history of the company. I'm not sure I agree the exclusion of this site is in the best interests of anyone wishing to seek further information.
I'm also curious what the "falsehoods" are?? There certainly doesn't seem to be anything inflamatory regarding other operatives in the company. TimFuller 05:27, 2 June 2007 (UTC)TFuller

Hello, Tim. I have just spent more hours working on Kraus' article. See the talk page there for suggestions. I'm not going to send you my website address, given that my userpage (and about a dozen Wikipedia articles) has already been vandalized by Kraus or a friend of his. If you believe that the info from Who's Who answers some of the outstanding open issues on his bio, I would be happy to review it. I am quite sure, as are other editors, that the "retrospective" site may not be used under WP:RS. Given how much time I have already spent helping Mr. Kraus, you'll excuse me if I don't feel like embarking on a research exercise just now to point out the statements in the "retrospective" website that I find objectionable. It is certainly unfortunate that LOW has removed important historical information from their website, but it is not required to be complete. We have remedied the omission, in the LOW article, by at least stating the correct names of the founders. If you can organize the reliable sources for notable information that is missing from the LOW article, I would be happy to help you format the info for the article. For instance, if you can find a number of reviews of their recent shows from reliable sources that say that the quality of the company has taken a nosedive since 1999, we certainly can make that case in this article. Let's focus on improving the encyclopedia with reliable sources and focus on the most notable issues for general readers, OK? Best regards. -- Ssilvers 16:45, 2 June 2007 (UTC)

Obviously you and other editors understand Wikipedia's policies better than I do; I would say however, that "official" websites don't always tell the whole story and by the process of omission are just as false as independant websites on the subject matter. I won't belabor the point further and I thank you for all your assistance.TimFuller 17:48, 2 June 2007 (UTC)TFuller

Founders[edit]

The article lists 4 founders. I cannot find any reference to Ms. Rubin ever being named a founder of the company. Early programs list a Mary Beth Glyn as development director. It is correct to list three founders; Kraus, McDonough and Dubinsky. After Dubinsky's departure sometime in the 80's most newspaper and magazine articles listed Kraus and McDonough as co-founders and omitted Dubinsky:

see Crain's Chicago Business June 20, 1988, p. 27 Light opera company brings Europe to Evanston, by Julie Whitmore TimFuller 18:03, 2 June 2007 (UTC)TFuller

See this article [1]. -- Ssilvers 03:46, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

Jonathan Abarbanel is a Chicago critic and more than likely received this information from the current LOW administration which seems to be bent on rewriting it's history. I can assure you, you will find no mention of Ms. Rubin as a founder in any print article prior to the year 2000. TimFuller 05:01, 3 June 2007 (UTC)TFuller

Well, I made the change as you suggest, but can you find some more sources giving historical descriptions of the company? This article definitely needs some better references. Best regards, -- Ssilvers 05:18, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

Here are some newspaper articles decribing the company history which are useful:

Music Notes: the opera company that gets no respect by Bryan Miller The Reader May 26, 1989 Section 1 p. 6 (The Reader is a free Chicago weekly still in publication)

Kraus makes light work of opera by Virginia Gerst Pioneer Press August 19, 1982 p. D2

Light Opera Works lights ten candles by Suzanne Weiss Pioneer Press June 14, 1990 p. D2

Lighten up, critics by John von Rhein Chicago Tribune 1990 (sorry no date, 10th Anniversary Article)

Second City Opera: Contending for First Place by Carla-Maria Verdino Süllwold Opera Monthly Feb. 1992 Vol. 4 No. 10 p. 21-30

I put the cites in the article. Now, go ahead and quote from them or you can put in the text statements that are specifically supported by these articles. Best regards, -- Ssilvers 14:17, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

References and Citations[edit]

In the Sullwold article in Opera Monthly, the production of Der Bettelstudent is mentioned on p. 26 as well as Kraus' 1986 Elizabethan Mikado.

Knickerbocker Holiday production reviewed in Gay Chicago Jan. 14-24, 1993 P. 35-36; thanks Kraus for assembling a top notch cast.

One Touch of Venus reviewed in the Chicago Sun-Times Aug. 19, 1997 p. 32 byu Andrew Patner

Wonderful Town reviewed in Chicago Sun Times by Liz Lynch Dec. 30, 1996 p. 27

First full production of the company, HMS Pinafore reviewed in the Chicago Sun Times by Valerie Scher "Light Opera Works' Pinafore- a spirited, romantic delight Sept. 11, 1981 p. 63

Kraus' Gothic Ruddigore based on concepts combining Tim Burton and Edward Gorey reviewed in Windy City Times by Larry Bommer August 22, 1996

Babes in Toyland revival announced in the Chicago Sun Times "Toyland: A Special Place for Young and Old Dec. 27. 1993 p. 23

Kraus' new translation and revival of The Chocolate Soldier reviewed in the Chicago Tribune "The Chocolate Soldier makes sweet bit of history" by Howard Reich Aug. 30, 1987 Section 5 p. 6

Czardas Princess reviewed by Ted Shen in The Reader July 6, 1990 Section 1 p. 32

The Red Mill revival reviewed by Patrick Sinozich in Gay Chicago, Jan. 23-Feb2, 1992 p. 36

Kraus' translation and revival of A Waltz Dream reviewed by Kathleen Tobin in The Beverly Review July 15, 1992

The Suzanne Weiss 10th Anniversay article (previously mentioned) lists Kraus as founder-artistic director. Dated june 14, 1990, the article mentions 26 productions over the first 10 years from "The Merry Widow" to "A Little Night Music" to "The Desert Song" to "The Gondoliers" without one repeat. It also mentions Tony Award winner Frank Galati quoted as calling LOW's Lady in the Dark production "Visionary".

La Perichole previewed by Suzanne Weiss in the Pioneer Press, Aug. 25, 1988 p. D1.

Utopia Limited production previewed in the Chicago Tribune "Gilbert & Sullivan fans find 'Utopia' by Ron Grossman Dec. 28 1984 Section 7 p. 3.

The Grand Duchess pf Gerolstein previewed in article by Suzanne Weiss in Pioneer Press Aug. 28, 1986 "Keeping it Light"

Golden Apple Revival reviewed in The Reader by Albert Williams "Homer on the Range" Aug. 25, 1995 Section 1 p. 36

One Night in Venice reviewed in the Chicago Tribune by Dennis Polkow May 22, 1994 section 5 p. 7

I hope this helps to improve the accuracy of the information about the early years of the company. TimFuller 05:28, 5 June 2007 (UTC)TFuller

Hello, Tim. Thanks for the references! Take a look (by hitting the Edit button) at the way I added the reference for Knickerbocker Holiday. Note that I also added the year of the production in the text. Can you go ahead and add the other references into the article that way? If the reference also covers something in the Kraus article, the reference can go in both articles. Best regards, -- Ssilvers 13:16, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

I began adding these references today, but the page is also being edited by someone else and my work is disappearing... TimFuller 18:17, 5 June 2007 (UTC)TFuller

Sorry I stepped on your toes there - I didn't realize you were still in the middle of editing. I was able to restore the missing references. Now that we have the dates for some of these things, it looks like they're in a sort of random order. Can you please take a look at it and see if there's a more logical order for the paragraph? Also, there are still a bunch of shows listed that have no date reference. I'll stay out of the article for awhile so I don't create an edit overlap. Best regards, -- Ssilvers 18:26, 5 June 2007 (UTC)
Also, do you have a reference (other than just repeating what the company told the source), for the assertion that any of these works were actual Chicago premieres? Best regards, -- Ssilvers 02:42, 6 June 2007 (UTC)

Probably not; I believe the American stage premiere of Duchess of Chicago was autheticated since the piece never had a NY Broadway run. I'm not sure what research the company did on the Chicago premieres. I do know, there were no professional light opera companies in Chicago prior to this one. TimFuller 04:14, 7 June 2007 (UTC)TFuller