Music: Heldentenor Darcy

With only a week more of opera to go, Manhattan's Metropolitan last week turned up its biggest surprise of the season. He was a brand-new and authentic example of a very rare operatic commodity: a Wagnerian Heldentenor (heroic tenor). His name: Emery Darcy.

Like all true Heldentenore (the Met's only first-rate example in years has been Lauritz Melchior), Darcy combines the lusty, ringing power of a baritone with a tenor's high range. When Darcy stepped into Melchior's place to sing Parsifal, he got a critical ovation.

Darcy is a home-grown product—from Chicago by way...

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