Magazine article Opera Canada

Opera Lafayette

Magazine article Opera Canada

Opera Lafayette

Article excerpt

Washington DC-based Opera Lafayette landed at New York's Rose Theater in May with another production that, like Dido, seemed notably out of sync with a group's established tradition. The variance wasn't musical: Ryan Brown led his expert period band with his typical alacrity and rhythmic swing, the chorus followed suit, and the four principal soloists--three Lafayette veterans and one newcomer--all did fine, stylish work, fluent both musically and linguistically. Nor was the program itself to blame: under the blanket title Opera and the French Revolution, it collected excerpts from three operas, written just before, in the bloody midst of, and near the end of the volatile final decade of the 18th century--a century that Lafayette has claimed as its favorite stomping ground. No, it was the staging that jarred. There wasn't a trace of period-proper costumery or courtly theatrical mannen in Mirenka Cechova's production, which surely would prove an improper fit for the opera house at Versailles, where two of its predecessors made happy homes in 2012 and 2014. Vivaldi's Catone in Utica, Lafayette's late-autumn offering, had been modernized, too, but without the often whimsical, too often distracting gimmickry passing (in Cechova's hopes, at least, I imagine) for profundity. Why were the chorus toting suitcases and dumping dirt? Why was that fine tenor, Antonio Figueroa, emptying his own luggage as Phaon in Martini's Sapho, forced to lather up some shaving cream, shave, and then change shirts while singing his already-quite-difficult-enough aria? …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.