EDT, September 30, 2013 A lot has happened, operatically, in Baltimore during the past few years. The city lost its proud Baltimore Opera Company after more than five decades, then gained a sort of second cousin in the form of Lyric Opera Baltimore. Opera Vivente folded its tent after more than a dozen years. Baltimore Opera Theatre came and went in what seemed like a flash. Amid these and other changes, Baltimore Concert Opera , founded by former Baltimore Opera singers, has managed to hang on and maintain a steady course. The organization, which just opened its fifth season, presents unstaged operas in the relatively intimate ballroom of the Garrett-Jacobs Mansion (Engineer’s Club), with only piano accompaniment. An opera given in concert form without an orchestra is far more limiting than one without costumes or sets. But, at its best, this company is able to make the pared-down experience quite satisfying when assembling a cast that can make the music come alive. A good example came Sunday afternoon with a performance of Donizetti’s endearing “L’elisir d’amore.” Lately, Baltimore Concert Opera has been getting a useful benefit from founder Brendan Cooke’s dual duties these days. In addition to serving as artistic director of the Baltimore ensemble, he recently became general director of Opera Delaware. Now, singers engaged for one can also perform for the other. Opera Delaware will present a staged version of “L’elisir” next week; cast and conductor, in effect, got the advantage of having a couple extra run-throughs of the piece in Baltimore. The singers had the score in their heads (no music stands for this performance, as has often been the case). And, having been through some of the staging rehearsals for Wilmington, the cast easily tossed in a lot of acting (and inter-acting) here. The performance was anything but a mere concert. I was especially interested to hear William Davenport again.
A fan tossed his hat into the air, hitting Winehouse’s beehive hairdo and prompting her to take out her ire by elbowing an unsuspecting fan who had not actually thrown the hat. Fall Out Boy (2007) Location: Chicago What happened: During a SPIN Magazine party at a rock club, Fall Out Boy’s acoustic set was punctuated by a fan shouting insults at the band, particularly lead singer Pete Wentz, calling him a “sellout.” Wentz engaged the fan in some onstage banter but proceeded with the show. While he was exiting the venue after the show, the heckler grabbed Wentz’s hoodie, and Wentz punched him in retaliation. Akon (2008) Location: Fishkill, N.Y. What happened: After a 15-year-old concertgoer tossed something onto the stage during Akon’s performance, the rapper summoned the crowd to point out the perpetrator. Security guards then brought the teen onstage, and Akon proceeded to lift him onto his shoulders and fling him back into the crowd. He landed on another crowd member, who reportedly suffered a concussion. The Rolling Stones (1981) Location: Hampton, Va. What happened: A fan bum-rushed the stage as The Rolling Stones performed “Satisfaction” during an encore. With hardly a second thought, Keith Richards knocked down the admirer with his guitar, plugged it back in and continued the performance. Courtney Love (2004) Then again, sometimes artists turn the tables on their fans, as Courtney Love did in 2004: Location: New York City What happened: Courtney Love was arrested after she flung a microphone stand into the crowd during a Greenwich Village concert, hitting a fan.