Saturday, April 05, 2008

Surprise in HD

Mimì....................Angela Gheorghiu
Rodolfo.................Ramón Vargas
Musetta.................Ainhoa Arteta
Marcello................Ludovic Tézier
Schaunard...............Quinn Kelsey
Colline.................Oren Gradus
Benoit..................Paul Plishka
Alcindoro...............Paul Plishka

Conductor...............Nicola Luisotti
Production..............Franco Zeffirelli

We knew who would sing and conduct La Boheme in the simulcast from the Metropolitan Opera: Angela Gheorghiu, Ramón Vargas and Nicola Luisotti. We knew the production was by Franco Zeffirelli. What we waited in suspense to find out was who would host. And we were not disappointed. Renée Fleming showed once again her undoubted talent as an interviewer. She is exactly goofy enough to interview the children's chorus and their conductor. She pretended to be amazed when buildings flew up into the air during the set change. (The set for Act II rolled on with people already standing on it, people who had been standing there all through Act I.)

She compared notes with Angela on how to cough when singing Mimi or Violetta without starting into a coughing jag. Angela appears to merely pretend to begin to cough, make the movement of coughing without actually coughing. She called it "acting." (I am laughing now. This is my first view of the witchy Angela.)

Renée remembered to let Ramon plug his charity work. Only the conductor seemed confused and unable to think of anything to say. No matter! Renée filled in. She is what makes the HD opera experience unique.

[See Kinderkuchen History 1890-1910]

1 comment:

Paul said...

In Denver they're showing the Met cinecasts at five or six venues, plus theaters in Colorado Springs (one hour south) and Fort Collins (90 minutes north). The place I attend has proven so popular they took up two separate theaters for "La Boheme." There were close to 400 people in attendance. I'm anxious to find out which Saturday broadcasts will be on next year's schedule.