Streaming and discussion begin at 7:30 PM.
Her dark, throbbing mezzo-soprano, voluptuous hourglass figure, brunette glamour and magnetic stage presence tick off just about every box in the Carmen checklist. Her middle voice is a fascinating smoky color and her low notes have a tangy bite. Since her first performances of this role at the Met in 2011 and 2012, she has apparently revised her approach to top notes, which used to spread and turn flat. Now the high register rings out, true and vibrant. . . .
Even given the vacuum of dramatic energy around her, Ms. Rachvelishvili worked a little too hard. Unlike the “rebellious bird” she sings about in her first act “Habanera” aria, this Carmen isn’t one to ignore her admirers; instead, she’s right in their faces, shouting, “Look at me!” Her acting, too, could use a little restraint. Showing a little cleavage or crossing one’s legs can be seductive, but Ms. Rachvelishvili’s nonstop breast groping and leg spreading came across like blatant advertising for a clearance sale. — Observer
Photo: Ken Howard/Metropolitan Opera