Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Incorrigible

J's threat to stay away from the Iphigenie prima has proved baseless. This just in via text: "They lowered fam circ prices so I came. Awesome production. Priddy tree."

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Awesome production? Wow - I thought it was one of the ugliest. The choreography, probably done in an effort to recreate how Greeks might have moved to the chanting of Euripides dramas, was a cross between group sign language and d the kind of bad liturgical dance one sees on evangelical cable shows or by looking up "praise songs" on You Tube.

Re. costumes - Klytemnestra deserved to die for wearing that horrid green. And don't get me started on how dim the whole thing was - although the overwhelming darkness did make for a few choice illuminated momements which still stand out in my mind.

Fear not - Susan Graham, particularly in the 2nd act, was in top form. She had some pinching and a nasal quality to her high notes in the first act, and the break between her lower and upper register was obvious in an uncomfortable way. However, in the second act, she sounded as good as I have ever heard her. What a pleasure.

Domingo sang a hybrid high-baritone/tenor transposition of Orest and came off admirably, although he does have a tendency to ham up his dramatic gestures. The real star of the show was Paul Groves, whose strong tenor was clarion, sensitive, melodic, and a joy to hear.

The final moments with Iphegine clutching her mother's scarf and writhing in mourning, until she can finally accept and embrace her mother's murderer came across as a bad acting exercise by an amateur director. Wadsworth can do much better than this effort - what a let down.

I do agree that the Christmas tree in the plaza is gorgeous.

Joe

Straussmonster said...

Orestes is actually not transposed in the Vienna version of the opera, although it is marked as being for a tenor (thanks to what forces Gluck hd to work with); that version has some notable alterations because of scansion, and I have no idea what text they were actually using--there's a critical edition of both versions, etc. etc. etc.

Jonathan said...

Joe, I would agree the choreography was a bit whack, esp in act one. I was otherwise a fan.

Maury D'annato said...

Matthew Westphal goes into some detail about what version it is at Playbill Arts, by the way.