Magazine article Opera Canada

Werther (by Florida Grand Opera)

Magazine article Opera Canada

Werther (by Florida Grand Opera)

Article excerpt

MIAMI

FLORIDA GRAND OPERA WELCOMED MASSENET back into its repertoire after 14 years with a vibrantly sung Werther. Although his voice tightened under pressure, Fernando de la Mora sang the title role compellingly; it was a rare pleasure to hear a tenor offer so much sweetness, subtlety and style. His acting, though, had a limiting stiffness. Jeanne Piland's warm mezzo, firm in all registers, conveyed Charlotte's inner turmoil as tellingly as her every gesture. John Hancock brought tonal solidity, refined musicality and perhaps a little too much handsomeness and charm to the role of Albert, while Anna Vikre was a bright songbird as Sophie.

Stewart Robertson let the mostly polished orchestra drown out some of Piland's subtlest efforts, but he certainly tapped the expressive richness of the score. Bliss Hebert's direction was largely by the book, and Allen Charles Klein's imposing, precious sets dwarfed the characters in the first two acts, but helped focus on the intimate drama in the last. …

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