David Patrick Stearns is a classical music critic and columnist for the Philadelphia Inquirer.
Any production of Massenet's Werther offers two possibilities: romantic-era absurdity or emotional devastation. The new Metropolitan Opera production starring Jonas Kaufmann, to be simulcast at 12:55 p.m. Saturday at six area movie theaters, has been solidly acclaimed, showing that an opera need not be great to be the highlight of the Met's season - at least to judge from the Feb. 18 opening-night performance.
NEW YORK - Yo! That exclamation is heard so constantly in Rocky (the musical) - more than during an average five minutes spent in South Philly - that the lavish Broadway show seemingly reassures us that being at the high-tone Winter Garden Theatre doesn't mean we'll miss the gritty, blue-collar atmosphere that launched this saga of the underdog boxing champ.