Cher Public

I want your Essex

Devereux 1During its first-ever Roberto Devereux Thursday evening one felt transported back to the Volpe years: four of the Met’s biggest stars shining in an opulent (if occasionally perverse) but reassuringly non-challenging production paid for by Sybil B. Harrington. Unfortunately, Sondra Radvanovsky, Elina Garanca, Matthew Polenzani and Mariusz Kwiecien were consistently undermined by the shockingly aimless conducting of Maurizio Benini, and so the gala premiere turned out to be less than the sum of its impressive parts.  Read more »

A fire upon the deep

Returning after 99 years for the Met’s annual New Year’s Eve gala, Bizet’s youthful exercise in Orientalia Les Pêcheurs de Perles proved a real crowd-pleaser in Penny Woolcock’s modest updated production with Diana Damrau, Matthew Polenzani and Mariusz Kwiecien on fire as the central trio whose romantic yearnings challenge their sworn vows of friendship and religious commitment.   Read more »

Teenager in love

L’elisir d’amore, Donizetti’s evergreen comedy about young love, returned to the Met last night with a strong cast, a high energy level from all the performers, and last but not least, a very full house. I think when all is said and done this L’elisir will prove to be one of the Met’s best revivals this season, and it’s a shame it won’t get an HD transmission.  Read more »