Joshua Rosenblum in Opera News:
The Met’s new production of Janáceks “Jenufa” (seen Jan. 13), the third in its history, was a chance to see a memorably felicitous pairing of artist and role in Karita Mattla’s emotionally layered, vocally splendid turn in the title role. Jenufa is never the engine of this opera, but as portrayed by Mattila, she was certainly its anchor. What was truly revelatory about her performance was nor simply her characteristically radiant sound, with its controlled, even tone from top to bottom, and her ability to sustain tension while producing a freely flowing line; more than this, she successfully underwent a credible transformation from an impulsive girl to an almost holy but still very human woman, saddened by experience but redeemed by the power of love and forgiveness. Her Act II monologue and prayer were easily the musical and emotional highlight of the evening – especially the precise moment in her miserable hallucination when she (and we) somehow knew her baby was being drowned.
Happy 50th birthday to tenor Juan Diego Flórez.
On this day in 1976 conductor Sarah Caldwell made history and her Metropolitan Opera debut.
Happy 87th birthday baritone Renato Bruson.
Birthday anniversaries include baritone Carlo Tagliabue (1898), tenor Charles Kullman (1903), designer Oliver Messel (1904).