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Harolyn Blackwell

I have recently put a bunch of work into this article and would appriciate some feedback. I wrote a brand new lead, a photo, greatly expanded the information about her early life and education, expanded information about her career, added a table of roles, added recordings to her discography, created a section on her voice and critical reception, and wrote a section on her work as an educator. I know I need to work on reformating the references. I wasn't sure about the ordering of the subsections towards the end of the article and would appriciate some suggestions there. Nrswanson (talk) 19:02, 28 June 2008 (UTC)

Cfd: National operas

I created Category:National operas primarily because I saw nothing on this subject in the Category:National institutions. I had not thought much about whether it should contain companies or houses. It could contain both under this or some other category name. Whatever you experts want. Hmains (talk) 04:15, 26 June 2008 (UTC)

The problem is that some countries have national opera companies (which may or may not be the most important ones), some countries have national opera houses and some countries may even have national operas (musical works). Maybe what you have in mind is companies? --Kleinzach 06:55, 26 June 2008 (UTC)
Probably companies, but I have a hard time in reading the articles what companies might be national/state opera and what may not and what about countries that have multiple national companies. Needless to say, anyone who wants can assign a purpose to the category and add and subtract article to match. Hmains (talk) 04:59, 27 June 2008 (UTC)
In that case it might be best to remove the category. I think you need to depopulate it (i.e. remove the tags) so the category is empty, wait a couple of days and then speedy delete it. (I'm assuming that no one else wants to adopt it . . . .) --Kleinzach 06:38, 27 June 2008 (UTC)
  • actually, I like the category so I will keep it. It is serving the purpose I intended, which is to include opera in national instructions and it is certainly not harmful to the opera articles or any other opera category. Hmains (talk) 01:03, 30 June 2008 (UTC)
I've put Category:National operas up for deletion as ill-defined. See here. --Kleinzach 01:48, 30 June 2008 (UTC)

Banner: new coding and design with 'Philadelphia-style' comments

Nathan, I and tech guru Alanbly have finished working on a new version of the banner based on the Philadelphia template which which allows for three options (no rating/rating no comments/rating and comments) of small print text at the foot of the page. An example of a rating no comments type (i.e. a nominal assessment) is posted at Talk:Arianna Zukerman, An example of rating and comments type is posted at Talk:Amanda Forsythe. (I'm not putting the banners here to avoid giving this page lots of categories.)

It's implicit in the new design that we are allowing individual written assessments of articles (any future project-based work still has to be decided). Is this acceptable to everybody? Can we install the new banner? --Kleinzach 00:31, 27 June 2008 (UTC)

I think it would look cleaner to put the comments in something along the lines of <div class="NavFrame" style="border-style: none; padding: 0px; ">. That way the Opera project doesn't have this huge stretched out banner compared to the other projects. §hep¡Talk to me! 17:10, 27 June 2008 (UTC)
Yes, I wondered about this. Can you show us an example? --Kleinzach 23:13, 27 June 2008 (UTC) P.S. I'd test this myself, except I don't know where the code goes. --Kleinzach 02:06, 28 June 2008 (UTC)
Let me whip something up. §hep¡Talk to me! 02:08, 28 June 2008 (UTC)
Gah, I can't figure where I went wrong. It's at User talk:Stepshep/sand. It will let me click [show] when there are no comments. But as soon as /Comments page exists the [show] goes away. If no one gets to it, let me sleep on it. §hep¡Talk to me! 03:30, 28 June 2008 (UTC)
Would something like we have at {{WPSCHOOLS}} work (w/ or w/o the boilerplate text?) Adam McCormick (talk) 17:46, 28 June 2008 (UTC)
I think I've got User talk:Stepshep/sand fixed. Just so you know, most of the time if you have to use {{!}} your syntax is wrong. This is almost never necessary. Adam McCormick (talk) 18:03, 28 June 2008 (UTC)
Thanks. I really don't have a clue what I'm doing when it comes to ParserFunctions or anything like that. :D §hep¡Talk to me! 18:16, 28 June 2008 (UTC)

Thanks to both of you! I've moved the new version to User talk:Nrswanson/sandbox so we can see the results on the article talk pages. Unfortunately there is still a problem because the text below the line is hidden in both versions (not just the rating and comments type Talk:Amanda Forsythe). The rating no comments type (Talk:Arianna Zukerman) was fine as it was - now it's a bit misleading. Can we possibly reset this to how it was before (i.e. Philadelphia style)? Regards --Kleinzach 14:04, 29 June 2008 (UTC)

Don't see what you mean? §hep¡Talk to me! 15:45, 29 June 2008 (UTC)
The Rating no comments type should not have hidden text. Do you understand what we mean by 'Philadelphia-style' comments? Have you seen the Philadelphia template? If you click on the link you will see there is small text below the line which says "Article Grading: The article has not been . . .". Right? Now the template itself is obviously a blank no rating type. OK? There are two other types: rating no comments - which should be visible - and the rating and comments which contains the written comments which as you originally pointed out created an obtrusive box - though arguably not much different to ordinary talk page comments. --Kleinzach 23:37, 29 June 2008 (UTC)

I've reverted to the previous Alanbly version on User talk:Nrswanson/sandbox - as it's nearer to what we want - so we can work on that one. --Kleinzach 23:34, 30 June 2008 (UTC)

I'm sorry I didn't get back to you sooner, if you would still like comments in a nav frame os some such I could have a look at making it still display the "no comments" text and the "no rating" text. Otherwise, just glad I could help. Let me know on my talkpage if you'd like me to rework it. Adam McCormick (talk) 02:59, 1 July 2008 (UTC)
I've put the comments and the leader links in a navframe, let me know if this is not what you want or if you'd like it tweaked (like different colors, smaller text, anything). I can't really follow the paragraph above so just let me know if it's not right and I'll fix it Adam McCormick (talk) 03:23, 1 July 2008 (UTC)
Should be working now, sorry for the issue. Adam McCormick (talk) 04:07, 1 July 2008 (UTC)

Excellent, excellent. Unless there are any objections, i suggest we go ahead and install it to see how it is in full operation. --Kleinzach 04:37, 1 July 2008 (UTC)

I've now installed the new banner template. It looks good, though there are evidently some minor technical problems that still need fixing. --Kleinzach 15:56, 2 July 2008 (UTC)
I believe I have these resolved. I've also cleaned up some of the syntax to be a bit more stable Adam McCormick (talk) 16:23, 2 July 2008 (UTC)


Had a quick question for you guys. Would anyone be opposed to adding List-Class to the grading scheme? It's a part of WP 1.0 and since you already use Featured-List the step below would be List. I wanted to check here first before making any changes to the template. Thanks! §hep¡Talk to me! 18:38, 28 June 2008 (UTC)

I've never heard of List! I can't imagine there would be any problems. Do any of the accessors have an opinion? --Kleinzach 14:09, 29 June 2008 (UTC)
Makes sense to me. Go for it.Nrswanson (talk) 15:37, 29 June 2008 (UTC)
I forgot, with the current template all classes are built in. When the switch is made I'll update the new template. §hep¡Talk to me! 15:49, 29 June 2008 (UTC)
We also have the problem of the new C class. Is there any good explanation anyway of how these new classes are supposed to work or is it all still a bit of a muddle? We need to know where these new classes appear in the hierarchy. --Kleinzach 23:18, 29 June 2008 (UTC) P.S.
If an article is a general list without prose, or contains "list" in the title and has little or no prose it can be rated list class. Some projects assess a short list as a stub; it just depends. "C" will fall between Start and B, the final arrangements have not been set in stone as of yet. Hope that helps! §hep¡Talk to me! 19:21, 2 July 2008 (UTC)

Assessment page: new grading scheme template

I added the new grading scheme template to the assessment page that is now being used across wikipedia. It explains C-class rating. We will need to adapt our point system accordingly to match this new structure. Our current scale shows the following:

  • 0-29: Stub
  • 30-59: Start
  • 60-89: B
  • 90+: A

I would like to suggest the following scale:

  • 0-29: Stub
  • 30-49: Start
  • 50-69: C
  • 70-89: B
  • 90+: A

Nrswanson (talk) 07:30, 30 June 2008 (UTC)

I've reverted to the previous version here because it was specifically written with references to opera by Moreschi (and later edited by me). We do need a new version - but also to keep all the specific opera content (opera examples etc.) and not abandon it all. Please check the page before you go throwing out the baby with the bath water! (Regarding the points scale, this may need to be fine tuned. The last one was, i.e. we found during assessment that it needed changing slightly.) --Kleinzach 08:05, 30 June 2008 (UTC)
Sorry about that. I didn't notice the opera specific examples in the last section. I went ahead and added the information on C class from the template to our assessment page. We can tweak it as necessary.Nrswanson (talk) 08:18, 30 June 2008 (UTC)
Thanks. It's poorly written and organized so it's still difficult to see how the new class functions. The implication would be that the definitions of Start and B need adjusting, but there's no great evidence that anyone has thought through this. (The weakness of WP is that it's so easy to introduce something like this and so difficult to get rid of it. Will we have Class D next week?) We also have a new List class - though in this case common sense has prevailed and it doesn't have to be assessed. --Kleinzach 10:22, 30 June 2008 (UTC)
Agreed. Now that its here though we have to adapt. What do you think of my modified point scale?Nrswanson (talk) 10:39, 30 June 2008 (UTC)
See my comment above about fine tuning. I suggest talking to Peter Cohen (and GT when he is around) about this. --Kleinzach 10:48, 30 June 2008 (UTC)
We do need to put in some thought to the boundaries. There was a perception when we graded the Wagner articles that our grading was quite severe. We may want to look at the articles as assessed last year and decide what grade we psychologically feel that things ought to be and set our boundaries in relation to that.--Peter cohen (talk) 10:58, 30 June 2008 (UTC)
Agreed. Perhaps this is also the right time to consider grading certain articles on a "curve" when dealing with subjects where little information is now available (such as singers from a long time ago or operas with lost scores etc.)Nrswanson (talk) 11:02, 30 June 2008 (UTC)

My suggestion would be to start with Class B Opera (title) articles - I think there are 5 of them - to which you have not been contributors. I'd leave anomalies like lost-score operas alone until you have a system to handle the regular items. --Kleinzach 00:23, 1 July 2008 (UTC)

Country house opera

Is this article sufficiently encyclopedic? It's apparently based on a magazine article (though the link to 'Country Life' doesn't work. We have articles on particular English country opera houses like Glyndebourne etc., but do we need an article on the genre in general? Any opinions? --Kleinzach 11:02, 1 July 2008 (UTC)

The subject certainly is. Obviously it could be written in a more (dry) encyclopedic style, with more references and viewpoints, but that's a different issue. The Economist has a whole article on the economics of it. There are loads of articles about the phenomenon itself (not just reviews of the operas performed in country houses) in the British press. This is a particularly good one [1] by Rupert Christiansen. Here's just example of recent articles using the term: [2] It even has its own acronym "CHO". The article would be particularly useful for people unfamiliar with the opera scene in the UK. I'd vote "strong keep" in an AfD. Voceditenore (talk) 11:33, 1 July 2008 (UTC)
Here's another one on the CHO phenomenon from the New Statesman, written by Patrick O'Connor, a consulting editor of the New Grove Dictionary of Opera. Voceditenore (talk) 11:52, 1 July 2008 (UTC)
Well, the magazine material you've linked to would be fine used/linked to the individual articles (about Garsington etc). The problem is with the title 'Country house opera' and particularly the treatment which looks anglocentric to me, not to say whimsical. I don't think we have any similar articles, do we? Roman amphitheatre opera? Piano bar opera? Football stadium opera? Australian beach opera? Perhaps if it were entitled 'Private opera' and concentrated on finance it might be more useful? If we cut out the mood stuff (jolly Brits in the rain etc.) and concentrated on factual information? --Kleinzach 13:53, 1 July 2008 (UTC)
This is different. CHO does not simply refer to the location in which the operas are produced (as in the examples you gave). They also (at least in Britain), have their own customs and 'rituals' and history. And it's going to be rather anglo-centric, because it's a largely British phenomenon. (Many of the CHO's in Italy are run by Brits). I wouldn't retitle it. CHO is an identifiable, widely used term, also used in the US to refer specifically to the UK phenomenon. Besides, 'private opera' implies that ticket sales aren't open to the general public. Yes, the article could be expanded to bring in non-UK examples (to the extent they can be found), and yes it could use a less whimsical tone, some more factual information, better referencing, etc., but that's no reason to delete it. Best, Voceditenore (talk) 15:06, 1 July 2008 (UTC)
I have an open mind on this. I think we're agreed the article is not good at the moment. There are more options than delete/not delete. I still don't like the title and I don't think its adoption by UK media necessarily means it's OK for an NPOV international encyclopedia. CHO is a media-invented concept rather than a natural encyclopedic subject. (National media perspectives are often distorting, exaggerating local importance for commercial reasons.) Any-centric is bad for WP. However if the content can be improved that will be a step in the right direction. Are you going to do one of your excellent rescue jobs on this? --Kleinzach 22:49, 1 July 2008 (UTC)
1) I don't like it is not really a valid objection, is it? 2) I think your characterisation of this article as POV is way off the mark. 3) I fail to see what's whimsical about the article's prose. 4) Any-centric is bad for WP is a dubious generalisation and I can't see how it applies here — an article describing a British phenomenon will necessarily be British-coloured. Wikipedia is a broad church. Michael Bednarek (talk) 01:10, 2 July 2008 (UTC)
Since when is something largely related to one country not suitable for an international encyclopedia? By those standards out should go Morris dance, Oak Apple Day, and... um... List of closed railway stations in the West Midlands. In any case, I would have thought it would be especially useful to non-UK readers who will have heard the term, but are not sure what it is, its history, and the prominent CHOs. A "media-invented concept"? It's been used with that meaning as far back as 1931, where Glyndebourne was referred to (rightly or wrongly) in Theatre World as "the only country-house opera in Europe" . See also the 1938 Time Magazine 1938 article about Glyndebourne titled "Country House Opera". CHO has considerable space as a British arts management model in Derrick Chong, Arts Management, Routledge, 2002 and is also talked about in John Lowerson, Amateur Operatics: A Social and Cultural History, Manchester University Press, 2005. It's even mentioned in the forward to The New Penguin Opera Guide: "Add to this the rise in the UK of 'country-house opera' [...] " And what "localized commercial" reasons would the New York Times have for using the term and writing articles about it, or Opera News, for that matter?
"Are you going to do one of your excellent rescue jobs on this?" Well, I don't know how excellent they are, but I will work on the article from time to time, after I've finished some other stuff currently on the boil. I don't think at the moment that it's in dire need of "rescue", although like many, many opera-related articles, it can use considerable improvement. Best, Voceditenore (talk) 10:09, 2 July 2008 (UTC)
Well, it seems you have already done most of the research for the article. I'm sure the article will benefit greatly when you transfer it over. I obviously hit a raw nerve with this one - but I'm not going to attempt to justify a position I didn't adopt in the first place - or answer leading rhetorical questions ("Since when is something largely related to one country not suitable for an international encyclopedia?"), concerning Morris dances et al. Anyway, good luck with your revision. --Kleinzach 15:27, 2 July 2008 (UTC)

Watching and tagging new articles

I don't know how many of you do this, but I try to check User:AlexNewArtBot/OperaSearchResult everyday. Many times they need cats, stub tags, etc. and sometimes they need to be seriously cleaned up ({{cleanup}}) and/or wikified ({{wikify}}), tagged for {{notability}}, {{Unreferenced}}, etc. Also many of them need to have {{WikiProject Opera}} added to the talk page if the article is under the project's scope to keep it on our radar. In the case of articles about living people, {{Blp}} should be added too. I also check for any signs of blatant copyvio and/or advertising. But.... I can't always do this. I'm often travelling, particularly over the summer. I'll be away later this month for 10 days and likewise for virtually all of August. It would be really helpful if some other project members could undertake to check the bot results every day or so and deal with any necessary tagging etc. which the new articles might need. Many hands make light work and all that.;-) Best Voceditenore (talk) 10:09, 4 July 2008 (UTC)

I'm also going to be away for 10 days this month and GT is away at the moment. Plus I'm involved in the massive bot run for Classical Music (about double the size of Opera). Let's compare dates later and see what we can come up with. Maybe we can work it out . . .--Kleinzach 14:07, 4 July 2008 (UTC)

Changes to the WP:1.0 assessment scheme

As you may have heard, we at the Wikipedia 1.0 Editorial Team recently made some changes to the assessment scale, including the addition of a new level. The new description is available at WP:ASSESS.

  • The new C-Class represents articles that are beyond the basic Start-Class, but which need additional references or cleanup to meet the standards for B-Class.
  • The criteria for B-Class have been tightened up with the addition of a rubric, and are now more in line with the stricter standards already used at some projects.
  • A-Class article reviews will now need more than one person, as described here.

Each WikiProject should already have a new C-Class category at Category:C-Class_articles. If your project elects not to use the new level, you can simply delete your WikiProject's C-Class category and clarify any amendments on your project's assessment/discussion pages. The bot is already finding and listing C-Class articles.

Please leave a message with us if you have any queries regarding the introduction of the revised scheme. This scheme should allow the team to start producing offline selections for your project and the wider community within the next year. Thanks for using the Wikipedia 1.0 scheme! For the 1.0 Editorial Team, §hepBot (Disable) 21:12, 4 July 2008 (UTC)

Cfd: National operas/ eyes please

This cfd will close soon. So far no Opera Project editors have expressed an opinion. As things stand now, it's likely the category will be renamed 'National opera companies'. Are 'national' categories desirable? See here. --Kleinzach 03:16, 7 July 2008 (UTC)

Return to the project page "WikiProject Opera/Archive 65".