Opera Expert Fred Plotkin Returns to Casa Italiana
Fred Plotkin is one of the world’s foremost opera experts best known not only for his depth of knowledge, but also for the joy with which he shares it. It is with open arms that he returns to Casa Italiana Zerilli-Marimò at New York University for another season of his hugely popular series, Adventures in Italian Opera.
Plotkin discovered the concept of the “Renaissance man” as a small child growing up one block from David Geffen Hall, and has since devoted his life to pursuing that ideal. His knowledge and expertise extend to opera, film, literature, classical music, food, and wine. In fact, The New York Times once described him as "a New Yorker with the soul of an Italian."
Since 1972, Plotkin has worked in opera doing everything but singing, including management, production, design, coaching, and broadcasting. He has lectured, taught, consulted and held managerial and artistic roles at some of the top opera companies, including La Scala, the Metropolitan Opera, the Royal Opera House, and the Lyric Opera of Chicago.
Extremely passionate about all that he does, Plotkin is also a distinguished writer. His book, Opera 101: A Complete Guide to Learning and Loving Opera, is the best-selling standard text in America on the art form. He has also written six renowned books on Italian cuisine, including Italy for the Gourmet Traveler. His articles appear regularly in The New York Times, Time, The Guardian, The Telegraph, Opera News, Bon Appétit, and other leading publications.
Through Adventures in Italian Opera, Plotkin will host a sequence of captivating interviews and discussions with an impressive range of guests at Casa Italiana once a month from October – May. All events begin at 6:30pm and are free and open to the general public. The events will also be streamed live on the website.
Last year, Plotkin welcomed Ambrogio Maestri, an Italian baritone best-known for his portrayal of the title character in Giuseppe Verdi's Falstaff. He also invited American tenor Matthew Polenzani, who has distinguished himself as a leading man in many important romantic roles, mostly in Italian, in the lyric and bel canto repertory.
On October 13, he will open this year with opera singer, Marianna Pizzolato, who regularly performs Baroque and eighteenth-century repertoire and has a number of recordings to her credit. From faculty at the Juilliard School to valued conductors, visit Casa Italiana for a complete list of this year's guests.