Cher Public

Overture! Light the lights!


This is it, cher public, the big night… and you’ve found the place to be. The traditional (that word again!) yakfest during the Met’s opening night festivities will take place here at from 6:00 pm until the curtain falls. Members of the public attending the event proper or the various HD relays are invited to text their reactions here as well.

To listen to Tosca:

More resources:

Enjoy, and try to be civil!

  • Noel Dahling

    Could someone help me out: in the above video of ‘vissi d’arte’ on the words ‘altar’ and ‘cosi’. Olivero uses an effect before the second sylables, such as’al-TAR’ and ‘co-SI’. Is this called “glotting”? If not what is that called?

  • uwsinnyc

    Why does your eligibility to boo change depending in whether you had a free ticket or not? I simply do not understand.

    If you get a free ticket, does that mean you cannot go “Brava” or clap either?

    HOWEVER, I do completely agree with 538 above-- there is a difference between booing singers and booing a production. Singers can be having an off night- but no such excuse for the director.

    This TOSCA is to me a perfect example of the saying “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”

  • uwsinnyc

    also, do you think that they will bring this production back, or is the end of it and we go back to the Zeferelli?

  • justanothertenor

    #542: uwsinnyc

    But you see, a lot of us thought it WAS broken. Zeff’s Tosca was overblown, gawdy, and tacky. The directing had grown general and dull. Apparently, this new production keeps the latter two adjectives, and goes the other way entirely with the former adjectives.
    Oh well.

  • michie

    I liked the Zeff production, but was ready to see it go if what replaced it was worth the change & money. I didn’t find the Bondy Tosca worth much of anything. OK, the Times Square webcam gave a poor picture and I’ll give it a better visual chance on Oct. 10 in a theater. But, aurally it was not a blockbuster….others have mentioned specifics so I’ll refrain from repetition. Conceptually it was simply an apparent ego-driven piece of crappola. It could have been worse; from what I understand. Bondy, so I’m told, intended to have Scarpia die of a heart attack while attempting to rape Tosca. Thank god for James Levine, who is said to have been the only one with the power & will to nix that very stupid “concept.” But it may explain scifisci’s comment on the knife being so small & hardly noticable…..given that it was a forced afterthought!

    Does anyone out there remember Robert Merrill’s TV show interviewing all those sopranos about Tosca? Wasn’t it Leonie Rysanek who said she couldn’t abide the idea that Tosca’s murder of Scarpia was premeditated and coldly calculating, that she refused to play it that way? Apparently, Mattila didn’t have the same clout.

  • michie

    #544 justanothertenor

    By the way, hard to blame poor old Zeff for “the directing [of his old production] had grown general and dull.” That is the fault of the MET. It happens a lot. I thought the MET sabotaged their revival a few years back of La Gioconda by exactly that sort of horribly dull, silly, and lackluster, nonspecific direction. So unnecessary.

  • iltenoredigrazia

    For what it’s worth, I never liked the Zeffirelli Tosca. Most definitely did not like the third act. I was more than glad to have a new production. I won’t see it until the spring and can’t judge it now, but I’m not in favor of changing things just for the sake of changing them.

    I have seen stylized, minimalist, reinterpreted productions in the past that made lots of sense. An example is a Flying Dutchman I saw in Paris a few years ago with Voigt. I still can’t get it out of my mind.

    As for I Due Foscari, it was the Rome Opera that presented it at the Met in the summer of 1968. (Malaspina, Zanasi & Cioni in the cast. I saw it.) They also presented Rossini’s Otello with Zeani and Bonisolli as one of the three tenors in that work. (I also saw that one.)

  • Avantialouie

    I was prepared last night to celebrate the birth of a baby. I did not care if it was a “traditional” baby, a “Regietheatre” baby, or an “avant garde” baby--all new life is a miracle. Alas, there WAS no baby, not even an aborted one: just bath water.

  • justanothertenor

    #547: That Dutchman is so beautiful. All those women, sitting qround that giant sail, patching it up. I have seen the production 3 times, I just can;t get enough. Same with Zambello’s production of Billy Budd, Cannot get enough of the amazing production.

    Visually arresting.
    That is a modern production of a classic that works beautifully.

    #546: I know Zeff did not direct the revivals. I will blame the Met for that. In Europe, I know many houses contract the original stage director to come back for a revival. I have worked with several of them on third or fourth revivals.
    Also, The thing about these new productions (at least in Europe) is that they do get swapped out fairly regularly (because the concept ages very fast), so they don’t get quite as stale from an acting stand point -- they don;t have fifteen revivals done by assistants of assistants of assistants. One of the last great revival production of the Met acting-wise was a long time ago, when the Met actually got Tim Albery to come and re-direct his Midsummer. Chilcott, Zifchack, Gunn, Groves were all amazing.