December 22, 2013

My Merry Obligatory Christmas Post of Bad Holiday Puns

Humperdinck's Tinsel (Gretel unavailable for photo)
Christmas is approaching, and Virginia Opera (my employer) is on mid-season break for a few weeks. Office staff are nestled all snug in their beds while visions of "Ariadne" (next show up) dance in their heads. (That can happen when you pig out on Christmas cookies just before bedtime.)

So I have no operas to write about until January. Hmmm... this is challenging. What to do, what to do? I know! Time for an amusing holiday-themed blog post! Let's see, what angle can I take? An overview of Christmas operas? Nah - did that a couple of years ago. How about a list of presents Santa might bring to opera folk? Uh... negative. That was last year.

Tell you what: let's go with some truly dreadful puns, whattaya say? Let's compile a list of the:

Top 10 Operas You Never Knew Were Christmas Operas

1. Verdi's Yule-isa Miller

2. Verdi's Il Tro-ho-ho-vatore

3. Saint-SaĆ«ns' Santa and Delilah

4. Humperdinck's Tinsel and Gretel

5. Charpentier's Yule-ise (Why, yes; this one does pretty much duplicate No. 1. What's your point??)

6. Debussy's Pelleas and Meli-Santa

7. Strauss's Elf-lektra

8. Puccini's La Fanc-yule-a del West (Admit it: yule puns never get old.)

9. Strauss Jr's Die Sleigh-dermaus

10. Meyerbeer's Les Hue-egg-nogs (It's French - the final "g" is silent...)

What's that you say? "Pretty lame"? Oh, like you could do any better, smarty-pants. You will NEVER know the effort I invested (all in vain) trying to find opera titles that would accomodate words like "noel", "mistletoe", "reindeer", and "north pole". I tried. I really did. Because I love you people.

So go ahead - sneer and groan at my little list. But you know what? It's going to work on your sub-conscious mind and I'll bet each of you will wake up at 3:00 AM, suddenly 1) convulsed in an uncontrollable fit of giggles; and 2) filled with the holiday spirit. That's what I bet.

Merry Christmas, yo!


  1. Tchaikovsky's "Eugen Oneggnog"
    Puccini's "La Bo-ho-ho-heme"
    Verdi's "Fa-la-la-lstaff" (thought you'd surely come up with that one, Glenn).
    Wagner's "Die Meisterkringle"

    1. You know, they call me "Dr. Opera". In recognition of your contributions above, I hereby dub thee "Nurse Opera". Try not to get over-excited!!!

    2. Well, "Nurse" is certainly preferable to "Horse" or "Soap"...

  2. Speaking of Wagner, what about "Das Rheindeer"?

    1. Okay, I'm now filled with bitter, bitter regret that I didn't think of this one. I'm crushed with festive Yultide self-loathing. :)

  3. It's a bit of a stretch, but how about Boito's Mistletoe-fele?

    1. As if mine weren't stretches... Yes, Ilana, if this post is ever published in book form by Random House, yours will be included and you will be listed as co-author. And if there's a film version, I'm thinking Jennifer Aniston to play you. Deal? :)