Magazine article Opera Canada

Glyndebourne

Magazine article Opera Canada

Glyndebourne

Article excerpt

Following hard on the heels of Glynde-bournes successful Tristan unci Isolde conies a new Die Meistersinger von Niirnbergy equally eagerly awaited, in part because it also marked the debut of Gerald Finley in the taxing role of Hans Sachs. His performance is hugely impressive, combining sensitivity to text and characteristic beauty of tone in an individual portrayal of the role. Presenting a pensive, even introverted cobbler-poet perhaps in the grip of a mid-life crisis--lies a good decade younger than the traditional pur vcyors of the role--Finley is phlegmatic as much as benevolent and wise. HisWahn" Monologue traces a convincing arc from depressive torpor to rolled-sleeve resolution/The anguish of his renunciation of Eva--as painful for her as for him--is graphically realized, with a passionate final embrace that certainly surprises her intended,Walther von Stolzin. Anna Gabiers Eva is winningly projected, though Marco Jentzschs Walther, undernourished of tone, lumpily phrased and poorly acted, is disappointing. The casting is generally strong, with special praise deserving for Alastair Miles as Pogner and Michaela Selinger as Magdalene.

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The Glyndebourne Chorus, making up in vocal vigor for what it lacks in numbers, still has to be shoehorned on to the modest-sized Clvndebourne stage. The celebratory final scene on the festival meadow is relocated to an ambivalently indoors/outdoors setting where a fairground rotunda--its carnival time--and pillars take up valuable space. …

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