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Notte e giorno criticar

“Imagine if someone left Vermeer’s masterpiece ‘Girl With a Pearl Earring’ out in the rain. That’s what it felt like Wednesday when the Met wrecked Don Giovanni: an act of criminal negligence.” [New York Post]

77 comments

  • David says:

    I think that trans-Atlantic relations are going to descend even faster than the Don into Hell if this report in London’s Evening Standard is to be believed:

    http://www.standard.co.uk/news/londoners-diary/the-marriage-of-figaro-still-has-bitterness-of-a-divorce-8371915.html

    • manou says:

      …and also

      http://tinyurl.com/d8g9lyp

      “The king of the curmudgeons: How comedian, theatre director and artist Sir Jonathan Miller’s new biography reveals he’s the most hilariously grumpy and acid-tongued man in Britain”

  • ducadiposa says:

    Having read this review, and Woolfe’s in the NYT and having seen this in HD last season…I have to concur. I think it was the first time I’d walked out of an opera performance (albeit it was in a movie theatre). It was simply the most unengaging production of an opera I’ve had to sit through. All this is old news, but what really brought it to the fore was today’s Clemenza (also seen in HD). What a contrast! I was completely riveted from start to finish -- and all of this in a production which in most camps would be written off as hopelessly old-fashioned. I think this points up at least one thing -- that “good” productions come in all shapes and sizes. Certainly, I’m thrilled by the latest re-imagining [and I'm not including the Grandage Giovanni here] of whatever great masterpiece is on show…but, there’s no substitute for well-directed personregie (sp?) which was in ample evidence today. The singers all engaged with each other in meaningful ways, and the singing was fantastic. Filianoti seemed to have a few problems with nerves in his first aria (and strangely enough in the final bit he has to sing while pardoning everyone), but otherwise, I really enjoyed his singing and acting. His torment when trying to decide whether to condemn Sesto was quite something -- being a native Italian probably helped with all that recit. Likewise Frittoli. Sure, one could quibble with a flubbed high note here; a little trouble with coloratura there…but she was so dramatic, and sang with such commitment that they hardly need mentioning. The rest were simply superb -- Garanca, Crowe and Lindsey. I think that the Met was smart to spruce up this “classic” Ponnelle production. Even though he obviously wasn’t around to actually stage it, there’s something about the simple, grand sets and smart placement of the principals on it that makes this production seem almost timeless.

    • I could not agree more. If anyone of you is a fan of Mozart and missed it, go to the encore, it is worth seeing it.

      Frittoli sang the role and acted so well, that, for her I would say this was one of those times when the flubbing here and there did not matter. Her Vittelia was a fully realized character, a woman with passion and a real journey.

      Filianotti was very good. I have issues with the way he sings, but once again, it didn’t matter because he made a meal out of Tito. His passion, his torment, everything was there.

      Garanca as Sesto, wow; marriage of artist and role. For thgose who say that she is too cold, go see this and tell me what you think afterwards.

      Lidsey’s Annio was very masculine and boyinsh and her 2 arias were strongly sung. Once again, strong acting and committment. She certainly will be a great Sesto.

      At first I was a little miffed that Servilia had not gone to Oropesa. Crowe was superb in the part and she looked positively ravishing in her costume.

      The one thing that I will disagree until the day i die is the miserable cuts they took in the confrontation between Sesto and Tito. I’ll give them this, they gave us more than most and I was happy to see that most of the recits before the Se all’impero were there; but come on! The entire opera builds up to this confrontation and having cuts in it feels like cutting the big climatic battle scene in a movie.

      I kept thinking, how would the audiences liked if instead of the big battle sequence at the end of Return of the Jedi we see Luke depart and 30 seconds latter shoot the death star and it explode? That is how the confrontation felt to me, superbly sung and acted as it was.

      This is all a minor complaint. I can not say it enough. This is a must see for any Mozart lover. The whole thing was superb.

      • Batty Masetto says:

        An unsung hero in this production has to be Peter McClintock, who is listed as the stage director. No doubt Ponnelle left extensive production notes, but you can’t bring a show to life this way without a hands-on director to channel all the talent in the same direction -- and that was certainly done.

        We enjoyed it immensely too.

  • louannd says:

    The encore of Clemenza is December 19th!