On Tuesday evening we walked all the way down to the Porta Romana in Florence to hear La Traviata in the Giardino di Boboli. They have built a stage and a set of large metal bleachers in the park.
The performance took a long time and didn't start until 9:20 in the evening. There was no stage curtain, so we could watch the scenery being changed throughout the three long intermissions. It was 12:30 and very cold before we were finished.
I enjoyed the Violetta, sung by Luz del Alba. She did not cough. Now that Renée and Angela have hashed the coughing thing out, one can't help wondering who coughs and who doesn't. The coughing roles are Mimi and Violetta. Our Violetta moved dramatically through her scenes very well. She died with grace.
The star of the evening was maestro Bruno Rigacci. We sat where we could see him work, and I thought he controlled the performance very skillfully. By our professional standards the orchestra was a bit rag tag and out of tune, but the maestro knew his Verdi and how to coordinate the often fragmented orchestral bits with the singers. An usher led the maestro to the pit and back in the dark. The chorus was also excellent -- both as singers and as actors.
More about the tenor, Luca Canoncici, later.
[See Kinderkuchen History 1850-70]