Magazine article Opera Canada

Spain: Barcelona

Magazine article Opera Canada

Spain: Barcelona

Article excerpt

Canadian conductor Yves Abel and Peruvian tenor Juan Diego Florez are a tandem in La fille du Regiment, having marched this light-hearted Donizetti across stages from Vienna to Bilbao. Sold out for months, no surprises were anticipated for the final performance Mar. 25 at the Gran Teatre del Liceu. Except that alarm bells went off a few hours beforehand: Florez was suddenly struck with stomach poisoning. Would the audience miss out on those amazing nine high Cs of "Ah! Mes amis"?

Against all odds, the tenor sang the entire opera with controlled aplomb, was interrupted by applause several times and showered with flowers at the end. For his part, Abel contributed considerably to the success, regulating the orchestra volume, slowing the tempo when necessary and communicating a range of emotions from the hilarious to the poignant, all with the underlying genius of Donizetti throughout. The house orchestra shone on this occasion.

As Tonio, Florez exhibited his near-perfect technique and guaranteed high notes in Act I and tenderly expressed his love in "Pour me rapprocher de Marie" after intermission. …

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