Tragedia lirica in two acts (1830)
Music by Vincenzo Bellini
Libretto by Felice Romani
Royal Opera House, Covent Garden
Thursday, 11. April 2009
Giulietta: Anna Netrebko
Romeo: Elina Garanca
Tebaldo: Dario Schmunck
Capelio: Eric Owens
Lorenzo: Giovanni Battista Parodi
Musical Director: Mark Elder
Chorus and Orchestra of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden
Yesterday I attended the last performance of the sold-out run of I Capuleti e I Montecchi at the ROH with Elina Garanca as Romeo and Anna Netrebko as Giulietta.
When the best Romeo meet on the stage the best Giulietta, the result can not be other than a smashing unforgetteable performance. Both Anna and Elina were absolutely stunning, with beautiful, wide and powerful voices, able to come across a dense mass of orchestral music and chorus with incredible ease. When they were together on the stage, their voices were matching perfectly each other. But it was not just the voices, it was also a perfect chemistry between them on the stage.
Let me share with all of you something that Rhodri, a regular blog reader who attended several performances of this run, told me. Every time Anna or Elina have been singing during this run, the whole of the chorus have been standing in the wings listening and when Anna and Elina were singing together there wasn't any space to be found backstage at all!! They have loved every minute of Anna and Elina singing. This, I think, is the greatest compliment a chorus can give to other singers.
Maestro Mark Elder conducted the Orchestra ad Chorus of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. The production by Pier Luigi Pizzi was simple but effective, with a series of columns as main architectural element and playing with the lights in an effective manner. The fight scenes between the Capuleti and the Montecchi were also very good.
Stephen Jay-Taylor has written in rec.music.opera
Read the full review at rec.music.opera
Last night of the run, and quite wonderful to experience again, not least because both Garança and Netrebko were both in sovereign voice and made an absolute six-course meal of Act I, scene ii. Golden Age singing, in fact, irrespective of when that Golden Age would notionally be placed. Singing of this quality would always have qualified, and amidst so much ridiculous hot air lately about deafening, graceless tenors that shook the world - or rather Manhattan - which is in some spurious nonsensical way designed solely to disbar those who either weren't there, or even born, from having an opinion on the subject, it's heartening to realise that there's a golden age going on right now, right in front of us.
Duo de choc, ConcertoNet.com by Claudio Poloni [french]