Chorégies d'Orange has a pretty cool TV schedule this year: Chung's Traviata with Ciofi and Grigolo (France 2, 7/15), and Prêtre's Pagliacci and Cavalleria Rusticana with Roberto Alagna (France 3, 8/5) will once more demonstrate the superiority of European television over its transoceanic counterpart (we do broadcast more baseball, though, and that's always a good thing, even when the Yankees suck).
"[...] as any true opera aficionado will tell you, there's no better way to indulge the habit than by scoring a seat at one of the great outdoor music festivals. Sure, no one can deny the drama of attending an opera at, say, La Scala, even when a famous tenor like Roberto Alagna doesn't storm off the stage in the middle of a performance (as he did in 2006), or trembling in anticipation as soprano Renee Fleming infuses La Traviata with her singular velvet touch at the Paris Opera. But there's a world of sublime sounds out there, and it pays to plan ahead."
Snubbed this year (among many other worthies) was Glimmerglass and Pesaro's Rossini Opera Festival [edit: omg, how could I have forgotten the Fort Worth Opera Festival??] Also snubbed were my Carroll Gardens cousins who do the entire Gilbert & Sullivan repertoire in their backyard in August, on a stage made from a discarded wooden halfpipe some sk8r kids left rotting on their curb. They use my grandma's old mumu kaftan dresses for a curtain, and the ushers are the neighborhood dogs with flashlights taped to their paws. OC is serious. So, which are your favorites?